LIT 2480 – Fall 2008-1                                             Professor: Dr. Ivonne Lamazares

                                                                                    Dept.:  Liberal Arts and Sciences

Office: 1413-4

                                                                                    Phone: (305) 237- 8764


                                                                                    Office Hrs.:  TR 1 PM – 2:30 PM

                                                                                    M, F 12:30 PM – 2:30 PM

                                                                                    or by appointment.                                         


                    TEXTBOOK AND MATERIALS:


·         Literature Across Cultures.  Fifth edition.

Gillespie/ Pipolo/ Fonseca;

·         The Thief and the Dogs by Naguib Mahfouz (book provided in

class, courtesy of The Big Read Program sponsored by the

Florida Center for Literary Arts);

·         A college-level dictionary that you can bring to class;

·         A packet of Scantron forms for quizzes;

·         A three-hole duotang folder with pockets, paper, highlighter,

                                    pencil, stapler.  All major papers must be typed.  You can

visit the Computer Courtyard in room 1409 to type papers.


                 REQUIRED ASSIGNMENTS:


·         Four writing assignments based on unit readings;

·         Group Presentation on one author/ reading;

·         5-7 ¶ essay based on the group presentation/ research;

·         Reading comprehension quizzes

·         In-class writing –journals, exercises

·         Homework/ participation in writing and discussion groups





LIT 2480 explores world literature as a form of cultural expression.  In this course we will analyze literary texts by connecting them to cultural issues.  Through oral and written assignments, we will study short fiction, plays, essays and poems as a socio-cultural response by writers to the world in which they live.  We will also become familiar with those literary terms and conventions necessary to discuss and write about literary works.  The course will be conducted partly through lecture/discussion, partly through small group workshops and individual conferences to give you maximum practice in developing your critical thinking, reading, writing, and oral communication skills.







Class attendance is mandatory.  More than three unexcused absences will result in failure of the course.  This includes the first day of class.  Absences due to illness (accompanied with a doctor’s note or health center appointment/ receipt), legal concern (court citation required), or College business (MDC letter required) will be excused.  If you miss more than 3 class periods without a documented excuse – even if you have a passing average in the class—you will not be eligible to receive a passing grade.




                        Writing assignments---------------------------------------------       60%

                        Group Presentation-----------------------------------------------      20%

                        Quizzes, homework, class participation-----------------------     20%





·         Our class is a community of working writers and readers, where everyone is treated with respect and consideration, and where everyone’s contributions are valued.  We believe in one another, and we provide one another specific, constructive feedback that can help us grow as writers, readers, and learners.  In return, we expect you to come prepared to class, ready to learn, participate, and contribute to our class community.


·         Attendance is very important.  If you miss class, it is your responsibility to find out about work missed and make it up promptly.  Please email me at to receive accurate information regarding deadlines and assignments.  T/F reading comprehension quizzes can be made up only in cases of documented, excused absences due to illness or accident.  Make-ups can also be scheduled in advance of the day you will be absent or before the quiz is given back to the whole class.  You will receive an alternate version of the quiz.  Make-ups are given in my office during office hours.


·         It is important to remember that you are a college student, and that as such you are responsible for your own learning.  Do your best and take pride in your work.  Ask questions in class.  Make appointments to conference with me about your writing or about any material you are confused about.  Act positively and promptly to clear up any concerns or difficulties you are having with the course.  I am here to help and to be a resource to you. 


·         Tardiness disrupts our class.  Please arrive on time and plan to stay for the entire class.  Late work will be penalized regardless of printer, email, or other non-emergency, non-medical problem (one grade per class period).  If you must be tardy, please come in quietly and take the first available seat by the door.


·         You have a week to make up missed homework assignments.  Email homework submissions are acceptable in case of illness.


·         Save all work-- classroom writing, essays, journals, drafts, handouts, homework-- for review and for your assessment of your own progress. 


·         Courteous communication (with your classmates and the professor) is expected in this classroom at all times.  Appropriate behavior and demeanor in college (raising your hand to be acknowledged, not interrupting or talking while others are talking, holding your questions until the professor is finished explaining, etc.) will be enforced.  No I-pods, web surfing, text messaging, private conversations, or sleeping are allowed in class.  Please turn off all cell phones when you come to class.


·         A note on plagiarism and academic dishonesty:  The Modern Language Association states, “Using someone else’s ideas or phrasing and representing those ideas or phrasing as our own, either on purpose or through carelessness, is a serious offense known as plagiarism.”  Penalties for plagiarism may be slight (i.e., failing the paper) or more serious (i.e., failing the course or being expelled from the College).  Be conscious of your use of others’ ideas and wording and give them credit. Besides lack of credit to sources, academic dishonesty includes submitting papers obtained on the Internet, papers written for previous or other current courses, or papers written by someone other than you.  I reserve the right to use to ascertain the originality of your work.













LIT 2480 - Literature and Culture



Catalog Description: LIT 2480 explores literature as a form of cultural expression. Students are engaged in the critical process of analysis by connecting

 literary texts to cultural issues. Through oral and written assignments, and practical investigation, students will study literature as a socio-cultural response

 by writers to the world in which they live. 3 Credits


Prerequisites: ENC 1101, ENC 1102.





Course Competencies






Competency 1

The student will demonstrate a knowledge of various literary genres by



a. reading critically to identify specific literary elements.

b. composing analytical and interpretive responses to assigned works.

c. analyzing the relationship between form and content.


Competency 2

The student will analyze and interpret literary works from a variety of perspectives, including



a. historical.

b. philosophical (ethical, spiritual, political).

c. social (values and customs).

d. aesthetic.


Competency 3

The student will produce reasoned, critical responses to the universal concerns in literature by



a. examining themes, conflicts, emotions, ideas and experiences which illustrate the continuity of

    human experience.

b. confronting the complex issues of being an individual – as part of a group or outside the



Competency 4

The student will demonstrate proficiency in oral, non-verbal, and written communication by



a. generating, developing, organizing, and presenting ideas effectively.

b. shaping communication to purpose, audience, and occasion.

c. analyzing similarities and differences between oral and written communication.

d. analyzing the impact of variables such as gender, orientation, and ethnicity.

e. practicing critical listening.

f. observing the conventions of standard edited American English.











Through the academic disciplines and co-curricular activities, General Education provides multiple, varied, and intentional learning experiences to facilitate your acquisition of fundamental knowledge and skills, and the development of attitudes that foster effective citizenship and life-long learning.


Through our reading, writing, and class learning activities, our course directly addresses nine of the ten Miami-Dade College General Education outcomes:



Learning Outcome

Course Content & Activity


Communicate effectively using listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills.

Writing assignments; oral presentations; group discussions; readings; comprehension quizzes.


Solve problems using critical and creative thinking and scientific reasoning.

Discussion of ethical problems and logical reasoning fallacies; case studies; class debates; specific and logical written and oral support for ideas.


Formulate strategies to locate, evaluate, and apply information.

Research for writing assignments and oral presentations.


Demonstrate knowledge of diverse cultures, including global and historical perspectives.

Multicultural and global reading selections; analysis of literature using historical timelines and synopses; direct discussion of cultural diversity and human/ civil rights around the world.


Create strategies that can be used to fulfill personal, civic, and social responsibilities.

Discussion and writing on social issues, including race, ethnicity, class, and gender. 


Demonstrate knowledge of ethical thinking and its application to issues in society.

Readings; class debates; writing on ethical dilemmas and on civil rights and civil disobedience.


Use computer and emerging technologies effectively.

Group presentation using Power Point; instruction on online research tools and documentation/ evaluation of electronic sources.


Demonstrate an appreciation for aesthetics and creative activities.

Reading literature and analyzing it as creative, aesthetic expression; creative writing assignments.


Describe how natural systems function and recognize the impact of humans on the environment.

Readings on nature and the environment; class discussions and writing assignments.



LIT 2480 – Fall 2008-1                     COURSE OUTLINE                       Lamazares



Please note:  The dates and assignments appearing on this course outline are only approximate and subject to change.  If absent, please contact me to receive accurate information regarding homework assignments and deadlines.  Email communication is preferred:  Please note the number 1 in the email address.



Week 1:  August 28                                        Orientation/ Course syllabus


                                                                        HW:    Appendix A, p. 925,

                                                                                    p. 1-10;

                                                                                    Wharton, p. 40-48,

                                                                                    Wolff, p. 56-59,

                                                                                    Wiesel, p. 52-56 


Week 2:  Sept. 2-5                                          Intro. to Literary Terms

                                                                        Brief History of the Short Story

                                                                        Group Presentation designation

                                                                        Unit I:  Roots and Rebellions

                                                                        Discussion of readings

            HW:     Munro, Heker (handouts)


Week 3:  Sept. 8-12                                        Quiz/ Discussion of Coming of Age stories

                                                                        Group Presentation:  Munro

                                                                        HW:     Family/ Hialeah story assignment

Rushdie, p. 73, Hurston, p. 77, Hughes, p. 80


Week 4:  Sept. 15-19                                      Quiz/ Discussion of essays

                                                                        In-class reaction assignment

                                                                        HW:    Olds, p. 90, Heaney p. 87,

                                                                                    Sexton, Rich (handouts)

                                                                                    Mahfouz, chaps. 1-6


Week 5:  Sept. 22- 26                                     Quiz/ Discussion of poetry

                                                                        Quiz/ Mahfouz

                                                                        Film:  The Assault

                                                                        HW:  Reaction essay

                                                                                    Mahfouz, chaps. 7-12            


Week 6:  Sept. 29 – Oct. 3                              Unit II:  The Politics of Revenge

Quiz/ Mahfouz


Dr. El Khouly’s Presentation

                                                                       HW:     Mahfouz, chaps. 7-12


Week 7:  Oct. 6-10                                         Film:  Hamlet, by William Shakespeare

Discussion of Hamlet

Research groups assigned

Case Study of Hamlet

HW:  Research assignment

            Mahfouz, chaps. 13-18


Week 8:  Oct. 13-17                                        Hamlet Reaction paper

                                                                        Historical Background on Mahfouz

                                                                        Group Presentation:  Mahfouz

                                                                        HW:     Research groups meet online


Week 9:  Oct. 20-24                                        Presentations on Group Research

                                                                        HW:    Comparison of Shakespeare’s

Hamlet and Mahfouz’s The Thief

and the Dogs


Week 10:  Oct. 27-31                                      Workshop on Drafts

                                                                        Film on Mahfouz’s work

                                                                        HW:  Paper on Mahfouz & Shakespeare

Woolf, p. 326, Tesich, p. 331, Brooks, p. 332           


Week 11:  Nov. 3-7                                         Paper on Mahfouz/ Shakespeare due

                                                                        Unit III:  Race, Gender & Identity

                                                                        Quiz/ Discussion of essays

                                                                        Group Presentation: Woolf

                                                                        HW:  Chopin, p. 288, Murakami, p. 285


Week 12: Nov. 10-14                                      Quiz/ Discussion of stories

                                                                        Group Presentation:  Chopin

                                                                        HW:  Bambara, p. 598, Sexton, p. 349,

                                                                                    Soyinka, p. 649, Cruz p. 377


Week 13: Nov. 17-21                                      Quiz/ Discussion of story and poems

                                                                         HW:   Rodriguez, Borges, Cortazar



Week 14: Nov. 25                                           Thanksgiving Holiday

Unit IV:  Latin American Literature

                                                                                    In Translation

Quiz/ Discussion of readings
Group Presentation:  Borges                                                                                                  

                                                                        HW:  Marquez, Neruda


Week 15: Dec. 1-5                                          Quiz/ Discussion of Readings

                                                                        Group Presentation: Neruda

                                                                        HW:  Reaction paper


Week 16:  Dec. 8-12                                       Oral presentations on final paper


Week 17:  Dec. 15-19                                     Papers returned/ Final grades