Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, period 7 and by appointment (including Skype meetings)
On-line Syllabus available on Sakai Webpage Course Description Ahmad Alaadeen, a famous jazz saxophonist and educator once said, “jazz does not belong to one race or culture, but is a gift that America has given to the world.” While jazz music has indeed had global influence, it was mostly developed and fully flourished in America. Jazz is not only an American music, but also an attitude, a mode of thought and feeling that infects the American unconscious, which threads through 20th century American literature and culture. Each musician marks the music with their own signature style, stretching and bending the main theme of the piece in unexpected dimensions.
In this course, we will read several authors and poets that incorporate jazz into their style and themes: We will attune ourselves not only to the underlying cultural chord charts, which structure artistic possibilities, but follow each author’s playful improvisation within the bounds of American life. In this way, our goal will not only be to understand, but also to feel the diversity of American history and experience through some of its major aesthetic contributions.
This course can satisfy the UF Gordon Rule requirement for writing. For more information, see:
https://catalog.ufl.edu/ugrad/current/advising/info/gordon.aspx. The student learning outcomes for this course are as detailed in the Undergraduate Catalog at:
http://www.registrar.ufl.edu/catalog/policies/advisinggened.html#requirements Objectives and Outcomes AML 2070 will teach students to
Analyze various texts and sources with a critical mindset
Read, write, and think clearly and concisely
Develop essay-length arguments built around a core thesis
Consider texts within a historical and literary context
Synthesize various ideas and concepts over the semester into a final paper
Required Readings All of the books should be available through the UF campus bookstore, though I highly recommend considering sources like Amazon or other used book retailers to receive the best deals. Please ensure that you obtain complete copies of the texts specified by the ISBN numbers noted below and follow the reading schedule. They are listed in the order we will read them this semester, although some supplementary materials will accompany these required texts which I will distribute to you when necessary.
Jazz Poems—Ed. Kevin Young (978-1400042517)
Coming Through the Slaughter—Michael Ondaatje (978-0679767855)
Ragtime—E.L. Doctorow (978-0812978186)
But Beautiful: A Book About Jazz – Geoff Dyer (978-0312429478)
Invisible Man—Ralph Ellison (978-0679732761)
Jazz—Toni Morrison (978-1400076215) Grading Policies The course is built around two major essays. The first essay, which requires an extended analysis of one novel, is worth 30% of the course grade. The second essay, which either develops a reading of two novels, short stories, or poems in conversation with one another OR an analysis of one novel (or poem) different from the novel explored in the first paper with at least three peer reviewed secondary sources, is worth 30%. Each essay is roughly 1600 to 2400 words. Before each of the essays are due, you are to attend an individual meeting with me to discuss any main issues with the paper or questions surrounding the assignment. Failure to or attend the individual meeting will result in a grade penalty on the completed paper. The Grading Rubric for these essays can be found attached to the end of this syllabus and/or on the Sakai “Resources” page. Journals These two core grades are supplemented by eight journal entries over the semester, one for each book/cluster of texts we read. Entries will be 350 to 500 words apiece, and altogether are worth 20%. Journals are due by noon on the day of the final discussion class about the given text. Journal entries will be submitted on a Sakai blog. Journal entries should explore some specific part of the text (which means quoting at least one passage). If I see that journal entries indicate that you have not read the text, you will receive a zero for that entry.
They cannot be made up, so make sure you remember to submit your entries on time.
Reading Quizzes An additional 10% is made up of five short reading quizzes, which may consist of either fact-based reading checks or short passage interpretations, given at random dates over the semester.
Participation The last 10% comes from participation in class discussion, activities, and attendance.
Students may appeal a final grade by filling out a form available from Carla Blount, English Department Program Assistant; this may result in a higher, lower, or ultimately unchanged grade.
UF has recently instituted a plus/minus grade system. As a result, letter grades now have different grade point equivalencies. For more information, see: http://www.registrar.ufl.edu/catalog/policies/regulationgrades.html
Schedule of Classes and Assignments
Assignment dates are subject to change as the course progresses.. Major assignments and holidays are noted.
COURSE ASSIGNMENTS AND READING SCHEDULE WEEK OF AUG 25– 29
August 26 – Introduction to course; syllabus presentation
August 29 – Episode 1 – Ken Burns’ Jazz
LAST DAY TO WITHDRAW WITH NO FEE LIABILITY WEEK OF Sept 1 – 5
September 2 –Baldwin, “Sonny’s Blues” (PDF available on Sakai)
September 4 – Fitzgerald, Diamonds as Big as the Ritz (Selections, PDF on Sakai); Journal 1 DUE
WEEK OF SEPT 8 – 12
September 9 – Jazz Poems (Selections)
September 11 – Jazz Poems (Selections); Journal 2 DUE WEEK OF SEPT 15 – 19
September 16 – Coming Through the Slaughter (pgs 1-80)
September 18 –Coming Through the Slaughter (pgs 80-160); Journal 3 DUE
September 19—LAST DAY TO WITHDRAW WITH 25% REFUND WEEK OF SEPT 22 – 26
September 23 – Ragtime (pgs 1-100)
September 25 – Ragtime (pgs 100-180) WEEK OF Sept 29 – October 3
September 30 –Ragtime (pgs 180-280)
October 2– Ragtime (pgs 280-336); Journal 4 DUE WEEK OF OCT 6 – 10
October 9 – But Beautiful: A Book about Jazz (pgs 120-240); Journal 5 DUE WEEK OF OCT 13 – 17
October 14 – CLASS CANCELLED – Individual Meetings to discuss Draft of Essay 1
October 16 – Invisible Man (pgs 1-80)
WEEK OF OCT 20-24
October 20—Essay 1 Due on Sakai by 11:55 pm
October 21 – Invisible Man (pgs 80-180)
October 23 – Invisible Man (pgs 180-260) WEEK OF OCT 27 – OCT 31
October 28 – Invisible Man (pgs 260-360)
October 30 – Invisible Man (pgs 360-440) WEEK OF NOV 3 – NOV 7
November 4 –Invisible Man (pgs 440-540)
November 6 –Invisible Man ( pgs 540-609); Journal 6 DUE WEEK OF NOV 10 – 14
November 11—NO CLASS—Veterans Day
November 13 – Jazz (1-80) WEEK OF NOV 17 – 21
November 18 – Jazz (80-180)
November 20 – Jazz (180-256); Journal 7 DUE
November 24-- LAST DAY TO DROP/WITHDRAW WITHOUT FAILING GRADE
WEEK OF NOV 24 – 28
November 25 – Jazz Fiction Anthology (Selections, PDF available on Sakai)
November 27 – THANKSGIVING BREAK (Work on Drafts of Essay 2) WEEK OF DEC 1 – 5
December 2– Class Cancelled – Individual Conferences on Drafts
December 4—Jazz Fiction Anthology (Selections) WEEK OF DEC 8-12
December 9—Last day of class, wrap up, final questions. (Journal 8 DUE) ESSAY 2 DUE , DECEMBER 19 BY 11:55 PM NO LATE ASSIGNMENTS ACCEPTED
Classroom Policies Attendance Students are allowed six absences without grade penalty. However, absences will affect participation grades (see above.). Furthermore, the sixth absence results in an automatic failure of the course. Students must keep track of their absences over the semester. Failure to do so may result in greatly reduced final averages.
Preparation As previously mentioned, papers and drafts are due at the beginning of class on the date assigned. Unapproved late papers will not be accepted. Ensure that you provide enough time for yourself to complete any necessary printing or editing before the class.
All papers must be turned in to Sakai along with a hard copy in class. This is to prevent plagiarism as well as provide an online database for your work. Instructions will be provided in-class at the necessary time. Papers must be in 12-point Times New Roman font and double-spaced with 1 inch margins. Be sure to staple papers before submitting hard copies.
Students will be expected to attend a paper conference with me before each due date. These conferences are intended to aid in the creation of a strong, coherent thesis to drive the paper and to clarify any questions you may have about the assignment. They are NOT optional. Failure to attend the conference time will result in an automatic letter grade deduction from the paper being conferenced.
Plagiarism is a serious violation of the Student Honor Code. The Honor Code prohibits and defines plagiarism as follows:
Plagiarism. A student shall not represent as the student’s own work all or any portion of the work of another. Plagiarism includes (but is not limited to):
a.) Quoting oral or written materials, whether published or unpublished, without proper attribution.
b.) Submitting a document or assignment which in whole or in part is identical or substantially identical to a document or assignment not authored by the student.
All students are required to abide by the Student Honor Code. For more information about academic honesty, including these definitions of plagiarism and unauthorized collaboration, see: http://www.dso.ufl.edu/sccr/honorcodes/honorcode.php
Students with Disabilities The Disability Resource Center in the Dean of Students Office provides students and faculty with information and support regarding accommodations for students with disabilities in the classroom. For more information, see: http://www.dso.ufl.edu/drc/ Harassment
UF provides an educational and working environment for its students, faculty, and staff that is free from sex discrimination and sexual harassment. For more about UF policies regarding harassment, see: http://www.dso.ufl.edu/studentguide/studentconductcode.php#s4041