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Michael Stoff, Director 305 East 23rd St, CLA 2.102, (G3600) Austin, TX 78712-1250 • 512-471-1442

Spring 2005

T C 603B • Composition and Reading in World Literature

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
41075 TTh
12:30 PM-2:00 PM
PAR 210
Hillmann (Following Hilfer)

Course Description

This introductory survey of literature from after the days of ancient Greece and Rome to the present treats literary forms, styles, and concepts through close reading and literary critical analysis. We will turn these tools upon drama, lyric and narrative verse, shorter prose fiction, the essay, literary biography, the novel, and autobiography. The course aims to: (1) expose students to the variety and richness of literary kind, forms, and styles; (2) suggest the enjoyment and cultural insights which literary works offers adults in today's world; (3) help students increase their facility and confidence in independent reading of and reacting to literary texts; and (4) help students improve permanently important skills in writing about writing. Course texts originate in Africa, America, Arabia, Australia, China, England, France, India, Iran, Ireland, Israel, and Japan, span nearly two thousand years of literary activity, and illustrate medieval, neoclassical, romantic, realistic, modernist and post-modernist trends.

About the Professor Michael Hillman teaches Farsi and Tajiki dialects of the Persian language, Persian literature, Iranian art, and world poetry. He studied Arabic and Persian at Tehran University and the University of Chicago (Ph.D., 1974) and English Literature at Texas State University-San Marcus (M.A., 1997). He has lived in Iran for upwards of six years, including two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Hillmann's books include: Persian Carpets (1984); A Lonely Woman: Forugh Farrokhzad and Her Poetry (1987); From Durham to Tehran (1991), and Reading Iran, Reading Iranians: Second Edition Revised (2003); and Tajiki Textbook and Reader: Second Edition (2003).

Grading Policy

Ten essays of two pages each on assigned readings and topics count for 40% of the course grade. A final essay examination counts for 30%. Class participation, which counts for 30% of the course grade, includes presentation of oral summaries and commentaries on assigned chapters or sections of course texts. Essay-writing relates to semester-long attention to improvement of writing skills. The grade for writing reflects improvement through the course of the semester more than writing skill brought to the course. Students find out about two of the final examination's five essay questions weeks before the end of the semester and can bring to the examination finished essays (4-5 pages each) answering those two questions.


"Classics of World Literature" (packet of texts, chronologies, and notes) Selections from The Bible Selections from The Koran Shakespeare, Julius Caesar The Rubaíyát of Omar Khayyám T.S. Eliot, The Waste Land and Other Poems Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Salman Rushdie, The Satanic Verses


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