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English 1160 Online: Native American Literature

3 semester credit hours (IAI H3 910D)

The Spokane/Cour D'Alene writer Sherman Alexie has suggested that "all stories are nothing but lies." Is he right? Or, is storytelling a mode of expression that has "truth" even when it's not exactly "true"?

In the end, what do people's stories and literatures reveal through their artistic renderings of everyday life? Can an exploration of literature by and about Native American people help us start to answer these questions?

Let's see if we can find out! This class samples from Native American poetry, oral tradition, and fiction from a wide variety of authors, including Sherman Alexie, Joy Harjo, Simon Ortiz, Wendy Rose, Gerald Vizenor, Louis Owens, Louise Erdrich, and Leslie Silko.

In addition to the fact that Native American Literature (English 1160) is a certified I.A.I. course that transfers to all Illinois universities, it also fufills the College of DuPage general education requirement for either Humanities, Human Relations, or International Education.

There are 4 assignments in the class:

  1. the mid-term essay exam; 
  2. the final essay exam;
  3. an essay that analyzes the course readings;
  4. a total of 10 postings to the message board about the course readings.

The class is largely self-paced, but there are 2 days when you must be able to access email, in order to download the exams I send to you and return them to me once they are complete.  You'll have one day to complete them and e-mail me your answers. The same is true of the final exam, which you'll also have 24 hours to complete. Samples of a question and answer for exams are contained in the syllabus, so that you'll know how long the answers should be and exactly what to expect. Also, a sample paper is contained in the syllabus that you can use for a model.


 English Department

C.O.D. Online