Engl. 555/755

African Literatures

Spring Semester 2008

MWF 12:00-12:50, Grubbs 312

Instructor: Dr. K. Nichols

Course Syllabus

Course Description

This course will study African literature, Afro-Caribbean literature, and Afro-American literature in relation to the themes of African heritage, the Middle Passage and New World slavery, and the contemporary post-colonial experience. The genres covered include novels, short stories, plays, and poetry.

Required Texts

There will also be several shorter online texts and hand-outs, as indicated on the Reading Schedule.


English 555:

English 755:

NOTE: All major assignments must be completed to pass the course.

Absence Policy

Regular attendance is required. Everyone has four pre-excused absences for those difficult times in life that interfere with class attendance, so you do not need to clear absences with me, but it is a good idea to check with me (or a classmate) to make sure an assignment was not changed while you were gone.

Students who miss more than four classes may be dropped from the roster for "excessive absences."

Late Work Policy

Late papers will be graded down one letter grade for each day they are late.

Missed exams must be made up just as soon as possible. See me immediately when you return to class.

NOTE: You may e-mail papers to me at knichols11@cox.net, but make sure they are sent as an attached .doc file.

Plagiarism Policy

I strongly support the policies of the English Department and the University on plagiarism. Undocumented use of someone else's ideas and/or language will result in an F on the paper or for the course--or worse for the most egregious cases.

See me if you have questions about what is or is not plagiarism. I'm always happy to help students who make good-faith efforts to do things right.

Course Web Pages

You can quickly access our online syllabus by typing in one of the following addresses:

NOTE: You can also access my home page (which links to all my web pages) by going to the PSU home page and then typing "Nichols Home Page" in the "PSU Search" box (top of page).

Instructor's Office Hours

My office is in Grubbs Hall, Room 450. I can be available at the following times to talk with you about our course or related matters. If that time does not fit your schedule, let me know. We can arrange a more convenient time.

The best ways to contact me are to leave a note on my office door or, even better, email me at the following address: knichols11@cox.net.

Nichols Home Page

Reading Schedule

Writing Assignments

Research Resources