ENC 1102 Readings & Resources

Resources:  I present you with a smattering of composition resources I have found and used throughout the years.  Refer to them as you feel the need.  As the semester progresses, I may refer you to the ones I feel would be most helpful for you.

If you know of other great resources, please let me know–the list may keep on growing.

Keep in mind that some of the resources will seem specific, or tailored to a particular assignment, textbook, or semester; just use the resources according to your own needs.  Also, when using these resources, please be ethical and give credit to authors where it is due.

Conventions for Writing about Literature

  1. Conventions for Writing about Literature (we need to add to this list)
  2. Common Literary Devices (basic vocabulary for discussing most works of literature)
  3. Taking Examinations on Literature

Types of Literature Papers

  1. Common Approaches to Writing about Literature (helpful definitions of types of papers I may ask you to write)
  2. Writing Literary Papers in Response to a Prompt (to help you write papers in response to the assigned literature)
  3. Journal-Writing vs. A Formal Literary Argument Paper (a prezi with bullet points from Literature:  An Introduction to Reading and Writing by Roberts & Zweig
  4. Comparison-Contrast Essays (a PowerPoint)


  1. Fiction: Major Developments & Key Terms (handout from Alling; refers to pages from Roberts & Zweig textbook)
  2. readinglog(graphic organizer from NCTE)


  1. Poetry: Why It Succeeds or Fails
  2. Poetry–Tone,Form


  1. Drama: Major Developments & Key Terms (handout from Alling; refers to pages from Roberts & Zweig textbook)
  2. Notes on Dramatic Comedy (a former student’s lecture notes based on Roberts & Zweig textbook)
  3. Notes on Dramatic Tragedy (lecture notes from Roberts & Zweig textbook)
  4. Greek Tragedy(a PowerPoint from Mike Temple, adapted by Melissa Alling)

MLA Documentation

  1. MLA Formatting & Style Guide (to help you format & document/cite your paper)
  2. MLA Guidelines for Citing Literature

The Writing Process (Planning , Editing, Peer Review, etc.)

  1. Sample Topic Proposal for Literary Criticism Paper (to help you plan a paper)
  2. Sample Topic Proposal/Planning Sheet for Comparison-Contrast of Two Works (to help you plan a paper)
  3. Effective Thesis Statements for Critical Analysis Papers (to help you invent your thesis & craft your thesis statement)
  4. GuidelinesforPaperWorkshops & Revising Literary Argument Essays
  5. Revision Checklist for Literature Papers
  6. Integrating Quotations from a Literary Text into a Literary Analysis Paper

Literary Research

  1. Writing General Research Papers in Literature (to help you choose a topic for a submission to The Explicator)
  2. Researching in Literature (from Purdue OWL)
  3. Annotated Bibliography (explanation & example annotations from Purdue OWL)
  4. Genre of Annotated Bibliography
  5. Sample Annotated Bibliography (from Alling’s grad school days)

Scholarly Journals/Literary Criticism

  1. Critical Approaches to Literature (important definitions composed by one of my classes)
  2. Literary Theory & Schools of Literary Criticism
  3. Reading Criticism (from Purdue OWL; a great place to learn about literary criticism:  scholarly books & journals)

The Canon

  1. The Literary Canon (an article on e-notes)
  2. Sample Essay on Canon (written by former student of mine at CF)


  1. Alling’s Checklist for Essays (fairly comprehensive)
  2. Descriptions of A-F Essays (a basic rubric I often use to grade papers)
  • Fiction read in the past by my ENC 1102 classes (& some related articles of literary criticism)
  1. “The Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant
  2. “Babylon Revisited” by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  3. “Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and ‘Babylon Revisited’ from The Explicator by Brian Sutton
  4. “Everyday Use” by Alice Walker
  5. “A & P” by John Updike
  6. Updike’s ‘A & P'” from The Explicator by Harriet Blodgett
  7. “The Chrysanthemums” by John Steinbeck
  8. “The Parable of the Prodigal Son” from the gospel of Luke
  9. “Mericans” by Sandra Cisneros
  10. “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Poetry read in the past by my ENC 1102 classes (& related resources)
  1. 1st Day of Class:  Dead Poets’ Society (a video)
  2. “Execution” by Edward Hirsch 
  3. “Introduction to Poetry” by Billy Collins
  4. “Ozymandias” by Percy Bysshe Shelley
  5. “My Papa’s Waltz” by Theodore Roethke
  6. “Dying” by Robert Pinsky
  7. “Richard Cory” by Edwin Arlington Robinson
  8. “Days” by Billy Collins
  9. “Some Keep the Sabbath Going to Church” by Emily Dickinson
  10. “The Planned Child” by Sharon Olds
  11. “Here a Pretty Baby Lies” by Robert Herrick
  12. “The Ballad of Curtis Loew” by Lynyrd Skynyrd
  13. “This is Just to Say” by William Carlos Williams
  14. “Another Meaning of Plums in Williams’s ‘This is Just to Say'”  from The Explicator by Janice Michaelson
  15. “Oranges” by Gary Soto
  16. “When You Are Old” by William Butler Yeats
  17. “When You Are Old” by William Ernest Henley
  18. “My Mistress’ Eyes are Nothing like the Sun” by William Shakespeare
  19. “Sonnets from the Portuguese:  Number 43, How Do I Love Thee” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  20. “Wedding Sonnet for the Next Generation” by Judith Viorst
  21. “Disillusionment of Ten O’ Clock” by Wallace Stevens
  22. “Dulce et Decorum Est” by Wilfred Owen
  23. “One Art” by Elizabeth Bishop
  24. “The Bagel” by David Ignatow
  25. “Subway Rush Hour” by Langston Hughes
  • Drama read in the past by my ENC 1102 classes
  1. Oedipus the King by Sophocles (a tragedy from Ancient Greece)
  2. The Bear by Anton Chekhov (a farce that exemplifies comedy)
  3. The Sandbox by Edward Albee (a tragicomedy or biting social drama?)

Course Concepts & Supplements:  These items will provide you with some basic terminology, concepts, and questions for interpreting and discussing literature.  

  1. Over-Arching Questions for ENC 1102
  2. Reading & responding to literature (helpful for class discussion and/or discussion forums)
  3. Writing about literature (forums, essays, & notes/articles)
  4. Literary devices common in each genre (poetry, fiction, & drama)
  5. “How We Read in the Digital Age” (book review ) from The Writer by Chuck Leddy
  6. “The Theater of the Absurd–The East and The West” by Dr. Jan Culik
  7. Critical Approaches to Literature

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