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Martin Kevorkian, Chair CAL 226, Mailcode B5000, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4991

Fall 2006

E 314V • Native American Literature and Culture

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
34525 TTh
12:30 PM-2:00 PM
PAR 304

Course Description

We will start this course by reading Thomas King's The Truth About Stories. King emphasizes that stories have power in our lives and that we should be mindful of our responsibilities as readers and hearers of those stories. We will build on this critical framework with readings from Craig Womack, Robert Warrior, and Daniel Heath Justice. These scholars argue that Native Literature is most responsibly read and best understood from a tribal critical perspective. With these theoretical frameworks guiding our work, we will read a variety of Native voices in novels, poetry, and nonfiction. Throughout the semester, we will focus on the cultural and historical contexts for each reading. We will read and "hear" these texts with an eye towards issues of sovereignty, community, responsibility, and storytelling. The main goals of this course are to gain an appreciation for and better understanding of Native American intellectual and literary traditions, and to experience a variety of voices and worldviews within that tradition.

Grading Policy

10% for participation and attendance
35% for five 1-2-page reading responses
10% for essay topic proposals and writing workshops
20% for Midterm 4-5-page essay
25% for Final 4-5-page research essay


King, Thomas. The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative.
Erdrich, Louise. Tracks.
Silko, Leslie Marmon. Storyteller.
Tapahonso, Luci. Blue Horses Rush In.
Tohe, Laura. No Parole Today.
Momaday, N. Scott. House Made of Dawn.
Alexie, Sherman. Reservation Blues.
Further Readings in Course Packet and on E-Res.


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