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January 15, 2007

EN 466: History of the English Language

EN 466: History of the English Language
Spring 1007
WF 1-2:15
Bey Hall 231
Office Hours: WF 11:30-12:30 and by appt.

Course Overview and Objectives
What is “English”? From its origins as an obscure Germanic dialect to its present status as the 21st century lingua franca of technology and culture, it is far more than a means of communication. Every word in the language contains a miniature history of society, migration, and beliefs. This course presents an overview of the historical development of PDE (Present-Day English) from its Indo-European and Germanic roots. In addition to examining changes in English grammar, vocabulary and syntax, we will see how great writers through history have used and changed English, and how the history of style and idiom is, in many ways, a history of English-speaking peoples themselves.

Required Texts
In the bookstore:
Burnley, David. The History of the English Language: A Source Book. 2nd Ed. Longman, 2000 (Paperback).
Leith, Dick. A Social History of English. 2nd Ed. Routledge, 1997 (Paperback).

In the Monmouth University Library or on-line through the library home page:
The Oxford English Dictionary

English Department Attendance Policy
Students are expected to attend all scheduled classes and examinations except in cases of illness or emergency. Beyond two weeks’ worth of absences, a student will be penalized 1/3 of a letter grade for the first additional missed class and 1/3 of a letter grade for every week of missed classes thereafter. Persistent late arrivals, early departures, and interruptions of class time (including bathroom breaks and cell phone use) may also result in a lowered grade. Students who desire a waiver of this policy must ask the L.C.A.C., the Athletic Department, a University Dean, or the Campus Health Center to provide a written excuse directly to me.

Late Work/Makeup Policy
This course relies heavily on in-class exercises. It is inadvisable to be absent unless absolutely necessary. If you must be absent, you are responsible for obtaining notes, handouts, etc. from another student in the class. I will request that the class share names, phone numbers, and/or email addresses for that purpose. Please do not email me to ask "if I missed anything;" find out from another student or visit my office hours. Makeup quizzes and exams will be given only under extreme circumstances of illness or family emergency and must be completed within one week of the original date at a time convenient to the professor. Incompletes will not be given except in cases of serious illness or acute family emergency occurring during the final two weeks of the semester, and then only if the student has demonstrated responsible performance in the course up to that point. Papers and exercises are due at the beginning of class on the stipulated dates in hard copy. Do not email assignments unless I have asked for this delivery method. Leave assignments in my mailbox at your own risk. Late assignments will have 1/3 of a letter grade deducted for each day late.

Academic honesty is at the heart of the educational experience. A student is expected to participate fully in that experience by avoiding all dishonest behavior in relation to academic work. Examples of such behavior include: failing to document borrowed words or ideas from research sources; handing in the work of another as one’s own; or unauthorized use of notes during examinations. The consequences of such behavior range, depending on the circumstances, from failure in the particular assignment to dismissal from the university (see the Monmouth University Student Handbook for details).

Library Materials
Library materials must be respected. They must not be stolen, damaged, or defaced in any way. The resources of the library are to be shared by the Monmouth community in a spirit of collegial learning.

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities
A student with disabilities who needs special accommodations for this class is encouraged to meet with me as soon as possible. In order to receive accommodations, the student must be registered with the appropriate disability service provider on campus as set forth in the student handbook and must follow the university procedure for self-disclosure (see the Monmouth University Guide to Services and Accommodations for Students With Disabilities). A student will not be afforded accommodations for academic work completed prior to the disclosure of the disability or prior to the completion of the documentation process with the appropriate disability services officer.

Course Requirements and Grading
In-class participation/quizzes 15%
Midterm exam 20%
Final exam 20%
Commentary #1 10%
Commentary #2 15%
Commentary #3 20%

HEL Spring 2007
Schedule of Assignments and Readings (subject to change depending on class needs)
Unit I: Old English (OE)
W 1/17 Introduction; The Historical Study of Language
F 1/19 The Prehistory of English (Leith, Intro and Ch. 1)
W 1/24 English morphology and grammar (Leith, Ch. 4)
F 1/26 Grimm’s Law; Phonetics and the IPA; Introduction to OE sounds
W 1/31 Features of OE (Burney pp. 1-8; Burnley, Ch. 3, 5)
F 2/2 OE poetry and Anglo-Saxon culture (Burnley, Ch. 6, 7)
W 2/7 OE poetry, cont.
F 2/9 OE poetry, cont.
W 2/14 OE chronicle (Burnley Ch. 8; Anglo-Saxon Chronicle handout)
Unit II: Middle English (ME)
F 2/16 The Norman Conquest (Burnley, Ch. 11; Leith, Ch. 3)
W 2/21 French Influences (Burnley, Ch. 15, 16)
Commentary #1 due
F 2/23 Middle English Dialects and the Alliterative Revival (Burnley, Ch. 17)
W 2/28 Chaucer and the creation of “English” literature (Burnley, Ch. 18, 20)
F 3/2 Midterm Examination
W 3/14 "English" as a national language (Burnley, Ch. 19, 22, 23)
F 3/16 The Great Vowel Shift (Leith Ch. 5; Burnley, Ch. 24, 25)
Unit III: Early Modern English (EMnE)
W 3/21 Renaissance rhetoric (Last class before "W" deadline)
(Burnley Ch. 25, 27, 28, 29, 30)
F 3/23 Spenser’s “Pure English” vs. inkhorn terms (handouts from Shepheardes Calender )
W 3/28 Shakespeare (Burnley Ch. 31; handouts from "Bad Quarto" of Hamlet)
F 3/30 Renaissance rhetoric, cont.
Commentary #2 due
W 4/4 Translations of the Bible: Transformations in English prose style (Burnley, Ch. 51, 52)
Unit IV: The Development of Present-Day English (PDE)
F 4/6 Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century prose style (Burnley Ch. 33, 34; The Tatler, Sept. 26, 1710)
W 4/11 Diction and Emerging Ideals of Correctness (Burnley Ch. 40, 43, 44)
F 4/13 The Rise of the Dictionary: Johnson, Webster, the OED
(Burnley, Ch. 38, 45, 46)
W 4/18 English as a World Language (Leith Ch. 7)
F 4/20 American English and AAVE
W 4/25 Pidgins, Creoles, and the future of English
Commentary #3 due
F 4/27 Review for Final Examination

Final Examination date Wednesday, May 2, 1-3 p.m.

Posted by Dr. Sue Starke at January 15, 2007 04:52 PM