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WRITING 139, SPRING 1999. MWF 11-11:50
Hrs. by Appt. at Humanities Instructional Bldg. 320

Please be sure you have a valid e-mail address because I’ll be sending information over the Internet to ensure continuity from one meeting to the next. I have placed the syllabus and course packet online here at my website, address www.ajdrake.com. Just examine the left-hand frame, click on the link entitled “Current Course,” and you’ll be at the right location to find handouts, study questions, and electronic text versions of several assigned readings.

Required Texts:

Doyle, Arthur Conan.  Six Great Tales. New York: Dover, 1992.

Freud, Sigmund. Civilization and its Discontents. transl. James Strachey. New York: Norton, 1961.
Gould, Stephen Jay.  The Mismeasure of Man. New York: Norton, 1996.

Marx, Karl. The Communist Manifesto. New York: International Publishers, 1988.

Stevenson, Robert L. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. New York: Dover, 1991.

Wilde, Oscar. The Picture of Dorian Gray. New York: Dover, 1993.

This website contains hyperlinks to other sites containing electronic editions of our reading selections.  Many e-texts are in the public domain and may be downloaded or copied, but some are not.  Please check for this information on the external sites.

Suggested Texts:

Kane, Thomas. The New Oxford Guide to Writing. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1988.

Gibaldi, Joseph, editor. MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. 4th. edition. New York: MLA, 1995.

Reagan, Sally Barr, et al. Writing from A to Z: The Easy-to-Use Reference Handbook. Mountain View: Mayfield, 1994.

Welcome to Writing 139, an advanced expository class. 139 syllabi vary, but in this seminar as I’ve designed it, you will have an opportunity to read some major Victorian-Era (1837-1901) prose selections on cultural theory, science, and colonial doctrine. In the twentieth century, science is perhaps the dominant discourse of Western societies. That dominance started to become evident in the nineteenth century, so the Victorian Era is an important one for anybody interested in science or cultural matters. And those of our authors who concern themselves with the question of empire provide us with a strong grasp of important developments outside Europe in the twentieth century. It is much easier, that is, to see why Gandhi was compelled to act in South Africa and India when you have read Rudyard Kipling, Thomas Carlyle, and James Anthony Froude on Britain’s supposed responsibility to “civilize” Africans, Jamaicans, Haitians, and other people of color.

While there are many good ways to design an upper-division, theme-oriented writing seminar, I have opted to forego assigning contemporary, heavily theoretical works (Foucault, Derrida, etc.) in favor of providing you with broad knowledge of a period in history that serves as the background for current theoretical debates about Western science and society. I’d rather begin with Darwin and Marx and Wilde, that is, than jump right into the maelstrom of the twentieth century. Not that I plan altogether to lead you into the Victorian wilderness and leave you there--the course will end with a few chapters from a central work by Sigmund Freud. When Freud is pitted against nineteenth-century moralizing and optimism, as you will see, sparks begin to fly!

Finally, do not let the word “Victorian” mislead you into thinking that this seminar will consist only in discussing dry texts. In spite of the slanders cast by certain modernists anxious to liberate themselves from the nineteenth century, the Victorian Era was a time of intense activity. The scientific, social, and economic debates of the nineteenth century--as well as the styles in which they were carried on--may at first seem a little foreign to us, but the ethical issues at their core still deserve our attention. There is more than sufficient sarcasm, scientific scrupulosity, pseudo-scientific silliness, and uplifting indignation in our authors to keep us awake. Perhaps I am eccentric, but I am enthusiastic about the material, and I’ll do my best to carry you along with me.

Even though this is an upper-division seminar with a theme, my main goal this quarter is to enhance your interest in writing and to help you develop your writing skills. I look forward to hearing your ideas about the assigned readings, but of course I must evaluate those ideas partly in terms of how they appear on the page. The foundations of good writing are steady reading and a sound knowledge of grammar and other basic skills. As the Irish playwright Oscar Wilde says, “In all unimportant matters, style, not sincerity, is the essential. In all important matters, style, not sincerity, is the essential.” With that overstatement in mind, our focus will be less on a multitude of minor grammatical problems than on the basics of good sentence and paragraph design, smooth integration of source material, and avoidance of a small number of important problems in grammar. In ten weeks, one can only learn so much about writing, so determining which areas deserve attention is vital. In any event, I suggest that you buy or borrow a grammar handbook.

Some Important Matters

Course as Contract: I think of this class as a contract between myself and you. The contract is simple: I shall come to class prepared to help you understand the texts assigned and to work with you afterwards on your writing skills, and you will read the assigned materials attentively, show up for class, and be willing to work on your writing skills. Therefore, you must come to class having read the assigned texts and study questions for the day. You must also complete and turn in journals and other writings in a timely manner.

Attendance Policy: I take attendance regularly. More than four absences will affect your final grade; an even greater number of them will result either in failure or a severely lowered final grade.

Basic Writing Requirement (Paper 1 = 20%, Paper 2 = 25%, Paper 3 = 35%, Journals = 10%, Quizzes = 10% of Final Grade): The basic writing requirement for this seminar is that you will write at least 4,000 words, not counting rough drafts, etc. That works out to writing two 5-page papers and one 6-page paper, typed and double-spaced. I shall soon tell you more about these assignments. Your course packet contains information about them.

Working Drafts: I require that reasonably complete working drafts be turned in at a set due date before I accept any final papers. Late working drafts may affect the final grade for the paper in question. Moreover, I expect these drafts to be reasonably well edited: spell-check them and look them over for obvious errors. I must have a chance to comment on your rough drafts and suggest changes. Otherwise, I will not accept the final paper. You cannot pass this seminar without turning in all three units.

Plagiarism: In the strictest sense, plagiarism (the intentional, unacknowledged use of exact words and/or paraphrased information) is a serious, easily detectable breach of academic ethics. Grave enough instances merit suspension from the university. Most misuse of source material, however, is unintentional and, therefore, not so much a moral as a technical problem. Since misuse of sources is generally the result of inexperience in such matters, I’ll do my best to provide some guidance concerning this problem. Please be aware, though, that even unintentional mishandling of source material may lower your essay grade simply because such mishandling reduces the paper’s effectiveness.

Folders: Turn in each final paper unit in a folder with pockets. Each unit should contain: a) the final draft; b) the rough draft with my comments; c) all peer edited, signed drafts of your own papers. Final drafts must include a Works Cited list, even if only the required texts are cited. Use Modern Language Association (MLA) conventions. (See the MLA Handbook. 4th ed., or my own handbook entitled “Companion to the Grammar Guide.”) All papers should look professional: typed, double-spaced, stapled.

Late Paper Policy: Late essays will be marked down two-thirds of a grade for the first meeting they are late, 1/3 grade for each meeting thereafter. Try to leave time for possible illness or exigency--don’t write your papers at the last minute! (Obviously, at my discretion and in accordance with my sense both of fairness to the rest of the class and fidelity to my own word, extreme illness or grave emergency may merit an exception from this rule.)

Key Term Quiz Requirement (10% of Final Grade): For each author, there may be a brief quiz at the beginning of an appropriate class. The quizzes will ask you to explain key terms (a list of which will already have been provided) that involve a basic understanding of the author’s concerns. All together, these quizzes (marked either “nc” for “no credit”, check plus, check, check minus, later to be assigned a point total) may make up 10% of the final grade.

Journal Requirement (10% of Final Grade): I require that a word-processed journal be turned in on specified dates twice during the quarter. (Turn in a copy, not your original.) The dual purpose of this journal requirement is a) to make sure you are trying to keep up with the reading schedule so you can participate in class and listen effectively and b) to help you work your way towards the development of good arguments for papers. Turning in reasonably complete and conscientiously done journals is an absolute condition for passing this class. Those who skip several authors, deal with study questions perfunctorily, or consistently turn their journals in late are depriving me of a vital chance to make sure they are keeping their end of the contract I described above. I shall respond either by lowering said students’ final grades or by failing them outright.

Peer Editing Requirement: This activity helps writers get a better grip on their own ways of structuring arguments and a better sense of their own stylistic strengths and weaknesses. A detailed, yet uncomplicated, set of instructions may be found on this web site--see the hyperlink Peer Editing

Reading Schedule for Writing 139, Spring 1999


04/05--Course Introduction
04/07--Stephen Jay Gould. “Introduction” to The Mismeasure of Man. 1--10. Reserve Location: BF 431.G68 1996 [2 hour]
04/09--Stephen Gould. “Measuring Bodies,” Ch. 4 of The Mismeasure of Man. 113--45. Quick examination of Lombroso selection from Criminal Man


04/12--Arthur Conan Doyle. “The Final Problem”
04/14--Stevenson, R.L. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
04/16--Stevenson, R.L. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde


04/19--Thomas Carlyle. from Past and Present: Book I, Ch. 3--”Manchester Insurrection” (14--23). Reserve Location: HN 388.C33 1960 [2 hour].
04/21--Thomas Carlyle. From Past and Present: Book III, Ch. 2--”Gospel of Mammonism” (150--55); Book IV, Ch. 4--”Captains of Industry” (276--83).
04/23--John S. Mill. “On Liberty.” from Trilling and Bloom’s Victorian Prose and Poetry. 83--96. Reserve Location: The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 6th edition. Volume 2. PR 1109.N6 1993 v.2 [2 hour].


04/26--John S. Mill. “On Liberty.” from Trilling and Bloom’s Victorian Prose and Poetry. 83--96. Reserve Location: The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 6th edition. Volume 2. PR 1109.N6 1993 v.2 [2 hour].
04/28--Matthew Arnold. “Doing as One Likes.” Culture and Anarchy. Ch. 2, 48--66. Reserve Location: HN 389.A72 1994 [2 hour], or Folder Selection 7 [2 hour].
04/30--Matthew Arnold. “Doing as One Likes.” Culture and Anarchy. Ch. 2, 48--66. Reserve Location: HN 389.A72 1994 [2 hour], or Folder Selection 7 [2 hour].


05/03--Karl Marx. The Communist Manifesto, Section 1. Reserve Location: HX 39.5 A5213 1985 [2 hour]
05/05--Karl Marx. The Communist Manifesto, Section 1. Reserve Location: HX 39.5 A5213 1985 [2 hour]
05/07--Charles Darwin. Selection from Voyage of the Beagle


05/10--Charles Darwin. Selection from The Origin of Species
05/12--Charles Darwin. “On the Moral Sense” from The Descent of Man. Ch.4, 97--125. Reserve Location: The Works of Charles Darwin. QH 365.A1 1986b v.21. [2 hour].
05/14--Charles Darwin. “On the Moral Sense” from The Descent of Man. Ch.4, 97--125. Reserve Location: The Works of Charles Darwin. QH 365.A1 1986b v.21. [2 hour].


05/17--Thomas Carlyle. “Occasional Discourse Concerning the Nigger Question”
05/19--David Livingstone. Selection from Missionary Travels and Researches
05/21--James Froude. Selection from The English in the West Indies


*Please begin reading Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray early this week; we shall begin discussing the novel at the end of the week.

05/24--J.J. Thomas. Selection from Froudacity
05/26--Mohandas Gandhi. Selection from Autobiography
05/28--Oscar Wilde. The Picture of Dorian Gray


05-31--Memorial Day Holiday
06-02--Oscar Wilde. The Picture of Dorian Gray
06-04--Oscar Wilde. The Picture of Dorian Gray


06/07--Sigmund Freud. Civilization and its Discontents, Chs. 1--2. (10--36)
06/09--Sigmund Freud. Civilization and its Discontents, Chs. 1--2. (10--36)
06/11--Sigmund Freud. Civilization and its Discontents, Chs. 1--2. (10--36)


Paper 1: rough draft due Monday 04/19; final draft due Friday 04/30
Paper 2: rough draft due Friday 05/14; final draft due Monday 05/24
Paper 3: rough draft due Monday 06/07; final draft due Friday 06/19
Journal: first part due Friday 04/30--with paper 1; second part due Friday 06-11

*Never give instructors your only copy of anything. Give them word-processed copies, and save the file on your hard drive or floppy/zip disk with an obvious name like “139 paper one final draft.doc.” The newer versions of Microsoft Word allow for such long, descriptive file names.

Reserve List for Writing 139, Spring 1999

Only one selection will be unavailable either at the UCI Bookstore or online, but for those who may have difficulty obtaining the online texts, I have placed copies of books containing required selections on reserve at the Commons Building located across from the Main Library. Books marked with an asterisk are on reserve as general background or because they would allow you to complete an extra-credit project. The borrowing period varies from 2 hours to 3 days. Determine the period that applies to your books--fines are heavy!

Abrams, M.H. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 6th edition. Volume Two. PR 1109.N6 1993 v.2 [2 hour]

Arnold, Matthew. Culture and Anarchy. HN389.A72 Macmillan 1908. [2 hour]

Carlyle, Thomas. Past and Present. HN 388.C33 1960 [2 hour]

Carlyle, Thomas. Latter-Day Pamphlets. HN388 .C3. [2 hour]

Darwin, Charles. The Descent of Man.  i.e. The Works of Charles Darwin. QH 365.A1 1986b v.21. [2 hour]

Darwin, Charles. The Origin of Species. QH365 .O2 1979b. [2 hour]

Darwin, Charles. The Voyage of the Beagle. QH11 .D2 1962. [2 hour]

Doyle, Arthur C. The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes. PR 4622.M4 1960 [2 hour]

Freud, Sigmund. Civilization and its Discontents. BF 173.F682 1962 [2 hour]

Froude, James A. The English in the West Indies. F2131 .F94 1969. [2 hour]

Gandhi, Mohandas K. Autobiography. DS481.G3 A356 1959. [2 hour]

Gandhi, Mohandas K. Satyagraha in South Africa. DT764.E3 G3. [2 hour]

Gould, Stephen Jay. The Mismeasure of Man, revised and expanded edition. BF431 .G68 1996 [2 hour]

*Herrnstein, Richard. The Bell Curve. BF 431.H398 1994 [3 day]

*Houghton, Walter. The Victorian Frame of Mind. DA 533.H85 1959 [3 day]

*Huxley, T. H. Evolution and Ethics. ed. J. Paradis. BJ 1311.H83 P37 1989 [2 hour]

*Livingstone, David. African Journal: 1853-1856. DT731 .L732 1963a, vols. 1-2. [2 hour]

Livingstone, David. Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa. DT731 .L742 1899. [2 hour]

Lombroso, Cesare. Criminal Man. HV 6038.L7 [2 hour]

*Lombroso, Cesare. The Female Criminal. HV 6046.L8 [3 day]

*Marx, Karl. Capital, Volume One. HB 501.M3633 v.1 [2 hour]

Marx, Karl. The Communist Manifesto. HX 39.5 A5213 1985 [2 hour]

Mill, John Stuart. Utilitarianism and Other Essays. BJ 315.M55 1987 [2 hour]

*Nordau, Max. Degeneration. CB 417.N82 1902 [2 hour]

*Spencer, Herbert. First Principles. B1653.F4 1976 [2 hour]

Stevenson, R.L. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. PR5485 .A1 1990 [2 Hour]

*Trevelyan, G.M. British History in the Nineteenth Century and After, 1782-1919. DA 530.T7 1938 [3 day]

Trilling, Lionel and Harold Bloom. Victorian Prose and Poetry. PR 1304.T74 [2 hour]

Wilde, Oscar. The Picture of Dorian Gray. PR 5819.A1 1982 [2 hour]

*Wood, Anthony. Nineteenth Century Britain, 1815-1914. DA 530.W58 [3 day]