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Making Literature Matter An Anthology for Readers and Writers

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  • Edition: 6th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2014-09-26
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
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Supplemental Materials

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Students have always responded powerfully to the memorable stories, poems, plays, and essays gathered in distinctive clusters in Making Literature Matter’s thematic anthology. At the same time, the book’s chapters on reading, writing and research help students harness those responses into persuasive, well-supported arguments about the issues raised by the literature.

As ever, the new edition of Making Literature Matter reflects John Schilb and John Clifford’s careful attention to emerging pedagogical needs and trends. In response to instructor requests, they have expanded their treatment of argumentation and research, and refined their approach to literary genres. Further, they read widely to identify some of the most engaging fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction published recently, and based their new choices for the sixth edition on how well that literature raises and explores issues that matter to students right now.

Author Biography

John Schilb (PhD, State University of New York—Binghamton) is a professor of English at Indiana University, Bloomington, where he holds the Culbertson Chair in Writing. He has coedited Contending with Words: Composition and Rhetoric in a Postmodern Age, and with John Clifford, Writing Theory and Critical Theory. He is author of Between the Lines: Relating Composition Theory and Literary Theory and Rhetorical Refusals: Defying Audiences’ Expectations.

John Clifford (PhD, New York University) is a professor of English at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. Editor of The Experience of Reading: Louis Rosenblatt and Reader-Response Theory, he has published numerous scholarly articles on pedagogy, critical theory, and composition theory, most recently in College English; Relations, Locations, Positions: Composition Theory for Writing Teachers; and in The Norton Book of Composition Studies.

Table of Contents

*New to this edition
1.  What Is Literature? How and Why Does It Matter?  
      James Wright, Lying in a Hammock at William Duffy’s Farm in Pine Island, Minnesota (poem)
How Have People Defined Literature?
What Makes Literature “Literature”?
      Maxine Kumin, Woodchucks (poem)
      *Lydia Davis, The Outing (story)
Why Study Literature in a College Writing Course?
What Can You Do to Make Literature Matter to Others?
Summing Up
2. How to Read Closely
Basic Strategies for Close Reading
Close Readings of a Poem
      Sharon Olds, Summer Solstice, New York City (poem)
Applying the Strategies
      Make Predictions
      Reflect on One’s Personal Background
      Read for Patterns and for Breaks in Patterns
      Read for Puzzles, Ambiguities, and Unclear Moments
      Read for the Author’s Choices
      Generate Questions that Have More than One Possible Answer
      State Tentative Answers
Reading Closely by Annotating
      X. J. Kennedy, Death of a Window Washer (poem)
Further Strategies for Close Reading
      Identify Characters’ Emotions
      Edward Hirsch, Execution (poem)
      Identify Speech Acts
      Daniel Orozco, Orientation (story)
Using Topics of Literary Studies to Get Ideas
      Lynda Hull, Night Waitress (poem)
Summing Up
3. How to Make Arguments about Literature
What Is Argument?
      Jamaica Kincaid, Girl (story)
Strategies for Making Arguments about Literature
      Identify an Issue
      Make a Claim
      Aim to Persuade
      Consider Your Audience
      Gather and Present Evidence
      Explain Your Reasoning
      Identify Your Assumptions
      Make Use of Appeals
A Sample Student Argument about Literature
      *Ann Schumwalt, The Mother’s Mixed Messages in “Girl”
Looking at Literature as Argument
      John Milton, When I Consider How My Light Is Spent (poem)
      Robert Frost, Mending Wall (poem)
      *Jonathan Swift, A Modest Proposal (essay)
      *Neil Gaiman, Babycakes (story)
Summing Up
4.  The Writing Process
      William Wordsworth, The Solitary Reaper (poem)
Strategies for Exploring
Strategies for Planning
      Choose a Text
      Identify Your Audience
      Identify Your Issue, Claim, and Evidence
      Identify Your Assumptions
      Determine Your Organization
Strategies for Composing
      Decide on a Title
      Make Choices about Your Style
      Draft an Introduction
      Limit Plot Summary
      Decide How to Refer to the Author’s Life and Intentions
      Recognize and Avoid Logical Fallacies
First Draft of a Student Paper
      Abby Hazelton, The Passage of Time in “The Solitary Reaper”
Strategies for Revising
      A Checklist for Revising
Revised Draft of a Student Paper
      Abby Hazelton, The Passage of Time in “The Solitary Reaper”
Strategies for Writing a Comparative Paper
      Don Paterson, Two Trees (poem)
      Luisa A. Igloria, Regarding History (poem)
      List Similarities and Differences
      Consider “Weighting” Your Comparison
A Student Comparative Paper
      Jeremy Cooper, Don Paterson’s Criticism of Nature’s Owners
Summing Up
*5. Writing about Literary Genres
Writing about Stories
      Eudora Welty, A Visit of Charity
The Elements of Short Fiction 
      Plot and Structure
      Point of View
Final Draft of a Student Paper
      *Tanya Vincent, The Real Meaning of “Charity” in “A Visit of Charity”
Summing Up: Writing about Short Stories
Writing about Poems 
      Mary Oliver, Singapore
      Yusef Komunyakaa, Blackberries
      Edwin Arlington Robinson, The Mill
A Student’s Personal Responses to the Poems
First Draft of a Student Paper
       Michaela Fiorucci, Boundaries in Robinson, Komunyakaa, and Oliver
The Elements of Poetry
      Speaker and Tone
      Diction and Syntax
      Figures of Speech
      Rhythm and Meter
Revised Draft of a Student Paper
      Michaela Fiorucci, Negotiating Boundaries
Summing Up: Writing about Poems
Writing about Plays
      *August Strindberg, The Stronger
A Student’s Personal Response to the Play
The Elements of Drama 
      Plot and Structure
      Stage Directions and Setting
Final Draft of a Student Paper
      *Trish Carlisle, Which Is the Stronger Actress in August Strindberg’s Play?
Summing Up: Writing about Plays
Writing about Essays
      June Jordan, Many Rivers to Cross
A Student’s Personal Response to the Essay
The Elements of Essays
Final Draft of a Student Paper
      Isla Bravo, Resisting Women’s Roles
Summing Up: Writing about Essays
Portfolio: Comparing Poems and Pictures
Analyzing Visual Art
Writing an Essay That Compares Literature and Art
A Sample Paper Comparing a Poem and a Picture
      Karl Magnusson, Lack of Motion and Speech in Rolando Perez’s “Office at Night”
      Edward Hopper, Office at Night (picture) / Rolando Perez, Office at Night (prose poem)
      *Edward Hopper, Conference at Night (picture) / Victoria Chang, Edward Hopper’s Conference at Night (poem)
      Gustav Klimt, The Kiss (picture) / Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Short Story on a Painting of Gustav Klimt (poem)
      Edvard Munch, The Scream (picture) / May Miller, The Scream (poem)
      Larry Rivers, Washington Crossing the Delaware (picture) / Frank O’Hara, On Seeing Larry Rivers’ “Washington Crossing the Delaware” at the Museum of Modern Art (poem)
      *Frida Kahlo, Frida and Diego Rivera (picture) / David Dominguez, Wedding Portrait (poem)
Rembrandt van Rjin, Self-Portrait at the Age of 63 (painting) / Linda Pastan, Ethics (poem)
      Pieter Brueghel the Elder, Landscape with the Fall of Icarus (painting) / W. H. Auden,   Musée des Beaux Arts (poem) 

6. Writing Researched Arguments 
Identify an Issue and a Tentative Claim  
Search for Sources in the Library and Online
Evaluate the Sources  
Strategies for Working with Sources
Strategies for Integrating Sources  
Strategies for Documenting Sources (MLA Format)  
      MLA In-Text Citation  
      MLA Works Cited
Five Annotated Student Research Papers
A Paper that Uses a Literary Work to Examine Social Issues
      Sarah Michaels, “The Yellow Wallpaper” as a Guide to Social Factors in Postpartum Depression
A Paper that Deals with Existing Interpretations of a Literary Work
      Katie Johnson, The Meaning of the Husband’s Fainting in “The Yellow Wallpaper”
A Paper that Analyzes a Literary Work through the Framework of a Particular Theorist
      Jacob Grobowicz, Using Foucault to Understand Disciplinary Power in Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”
A Paper that Places a Literary Work in Historical and Cultural Context
      Brittany Thomas, The Relative Absence of the Human Touch in “The Yellow Wallpaper”
      *A Paper that Places a Literary Work in a Multimedia Context
      *Kyra Blaylock, Different Kinds of Horrifying Images in “The Yellow Wallpaper” and “A Salem Witch” 
      *Making a Multimedia Presentation about a Literary Work
Summing Up
Contexts for Research: Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”
      Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper
      Cultural Contexts
            Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Why I Wrote “The Yellow Wallpaper”
            S. Weir Mitchell, From The Evolution of the Rest Treatment
            John Harvey Kellogg, From The Ladies’ Guide in Health and Disease
7. Families
Reconciling with Fathers: Poems
Lucille Clifton, forgiving my father 
Robert Hayden, Those Winter Sundays
Theodore Roethke, My Papa's Waltz 
Li-Young Lee, My Father, in Heaven, Is Reading Out Loud  
Exorcising the Dead: Critical Commentaries on a Poem
Sylvia Plath, Daddy 
Critical Commentaries:
      Mary Lynn Broe, From Protean Poetic: The Poetry of Sylvia Plath
      Lynda K. Bundtzen, From Plath's Incarnations
      Steven Gould Axelrod, From Sylvia Plath: The Wound and the Cure of Words
      Tim Kendall, From Sylvia Plath:  A Critical Study
Grandparents and Legacies: Poems
Nikki Giovanni, Legacies 
Linda Hogan, Heritage
Gary Soto, Behind Grandma's House
Alberto Ríos, Mi Abuelo 
Judith Ortiz Cofer, Claims
Poetic Visions of Family: A Collection of Poems by Sharon Olds
Sharon Olds, I Go Back to May 1937
Sharon Olds, My Son the Man
Sharon Olds, First Thanksgiving
*Sharon Olds, Last Look
Gays and Lesbians in Families: Poems 
Essex Hemphill, Commitments
Audre Lorde, Who Said It Was Simple
Minnie Bruce Pratt, Two Small-Sized Girls
*Richard Blanco, Queer Theory: According to My Grandmother
Mothers and Daughters: Stories  
Tillie Olsen, I Stand Here Ironing 
Amy Tan, Two Kinds
Alice Walker, Everyday Use 

*Longing for a Father: Stories
*John Cheever, Reunion
*Dagoberto Gilb, Uncle Rock
Siblings in Conflict: Stories
Tobias Wolff, The Rich Brother
James Baldwin, Sonny’s Blues
Family Dramas: Re-Visions of a Play
Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie 
Christopher Durang, For Whom the Southern Belle Tolls 
A Family’s Dreams: Cultural Contexts for a Play
Lorraine Hansberry, A Raisin in the Sun
Cultural Contexts:
      The Crisis, The Hansberrys of Chicago: They Join Business Acumen with Social Vision
      Lorraine Hansberry, April 23, 1964, Letter to the New York Times
      Alan Ehrenhalt, From The Lost City: Discovering the Forgotten Virtues of Community in the Chicago of the 1950s 
       Sidney Poitier, From The Measure of a Man:  A Spiritual Autobiography 

*Food in  Families: Essays
*Ruth Reichl, The Queen of Mold
*David Sedaris, Tasteless
*Chang Rae Lee, Coming Home Again
*Fateful Decisions about Parenthood: Across Genres
T. Coraghessan Boyle, The Love of My Life (story)
Maxine Hong Kingston, No Name Woman (essay) 

8. Love 
True Love: Poems  
William Shakespeare, Let me not to the marriage of true minds
John Keats, Bright Star
*Elizabeth Barrett Browning, How Do I Love Thee?
e. e. cummings, somewhere i have never travelled 
*Passionate Love: Poems 
Michael S. Harper, Discovery 
Susan Minot, My Husband’s Back
*Melancholy Loves: Poems
Edna St. Vincent Millay, What My Lips Have Kissed, and Where, and Why
*Pablo Neruda, The Song of Despair
*Robin Becker, Morning Poem

Seductive Arguments: Poems
*John Donne, The Flea
Andrew Marvell, To His Coy Mistress
T.S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
*Love as a Haven: Cultural Contexts for a Poem
 Matthew Arnold, Dover Beach 
 Cultural Contexts: 
      *Charles Dickens, from Hard Times
      *Friedrich Engels, from The Condition of the Working Class in England
      *James Eli Adams, Narrating Nature: Darwin
Romantic Dreams:  Stories
James Joyce, Araby
John Updike, A & P 
Leslie Marmon Silko, Yellow Woman 
The Appearance of Love: A Collection of Stories by Kate Chopin
Kate Chopin, The Storm 
Kate Chopin, The Story of an Hour
Kate Chopin, Désirée's Baby
*Talking about Love and Trust: A Re-Vision of a Story
Raymond Carver, What We Talk About When We Talk About Love
New Nathan Englander, What We Talk about When We Talk about Anne Frank
Jealous Love: Critical Commentaries on a Play 
William Shakespeare, Othello 
Critical Commentaries:
      A.C. Bradley, The Noble Othello
      Millicent Bell, Othello’s Jealousy
      Jeffrie G. Murphy, Jealousy, Shame, and the Rival
Places of the Heart:  Essays  
M. Scott Momaday, The Way to Rainy Mountain
Barry Lopez, Emancipation
*Arguments about Love:  Essays
*Laura Kipnis, Against Love
*Meghan O’Rourke, The Marriage Trap
*Immigrant Brides: Across Genres
*Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, The Brides Come to Yuba City (poem)
*Julie Otsuka, Come Japanese! (story)
9. Freedom and Confinement 
Struggling against Stereotypes: Poems
Chrystos, Today Was a Bad Day Like TB
Dwight Okita, In Response to Executive Order 9066
David Hernandez, Pigeons 
Pat Mora, Legal Alien 
Toi Derricotte, Black Boys Play the Classics
Naomi Shihab Nye, Blood 
Remembering the Death Camps: Poems
Martin Niemoller, First They Came for the Jews 
Nelly Sachs,  Chorus of the Rescued 
Marianne Cohn,  I Shall Betray Tomorrow 
Karen Gershon, Race 
Anne Sexton, After Auschwitz 
A Creative Confinement:  A Collection of Poems by Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson, Wild Nights--Wild Nights!
*Emily Dickinson, Tell all the Truth but tell it slant--
*Emily Dickinson, Much Madness is divinest Sense
*Emily Dickinson,  I’m Nobody! Who are you?
Freedom Caged:  Re-Visions of a Poem
*Rainer Maria Rilke, Der Panther
*Robert Bly, The Panther
*J. B. Leishman, The Panther
*Stephen Mitchell, The Panther
Where Tradition Is a Trap: Stories
Shirley Jackson, The Lottery 
Ursula K. LeGuin, The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas
*Caitlin Horrocks, The Sleep
A Troubled Freedom: Stories
*Ernest Hemingway, Soldier’s Home
*Louise Erdrich, The Red Convertible 
Unendurable Confinement: Critical Commentaries on a Story
*Willa Cather, Paul’s Case
Critical Commentaries
      *Sarah Kane, Narcissistic Personality Disorder in Willa Cather’s “Paul’s Case”
      *Loretta Wasserman, From Willa Cather: A Study of the Short Fiction
      *John P. Anders, From Willa Cather’s Sexual Aesthetics and the Male Homosexual Literary Tradition
      *Sharon O’Brien, From Willa Cather: The Emerging Voice
A Door to Freedom: Cultural Contexts for a Play
Henrik Ibsen, A Doll’s House
Cultural Contexts
      *August Strindberg, On A Doll’s House
      *Emma Goldman, Review of A Doll’s House
      *Joan Templeton, The Doll House Backlash:  Criticism, Feminism, and Ibsen
      *Susanna Rustin, Why A Doll’s House Is More Relevant than Ever
Confining Surveillance: Essays
*Michel Foucault, Panopticon
*Jeffrey Toobin, Edward Snowden’s Real  Impact. 
*Peter Ludlow, The Banality of Systematic Evil
A Deadly Quest for Freedom:  Across Genres 
*Frank O’Connor, Guests of the Nation (Story)
*Seamus Heaney, Casualty (poem)
*Seamus Heaney, from Crediting Poetry (essay)

10.   Crime and Justice
Justice for Animals: Poems
D. H. Lawrence, Snake
Elizabeth Bishop, The Fish
William Stafford, Traveling through the Dark
Justice for Workers: Poems
Philip Levine, What Work Is
Marge Piercy, The Secretary Chant 
Jimmy Santiago Baca, So Mexicans Are Taking Jobs from Americans
*Philip Shultz, Greed
Punishments: Poems
Seamus Heaney, Punishment 
Carolyn Forché, The Colonel
Sherman Alexie, Capital Punishment 
Envisioning a More Just World: Poems
William Blake, The Chimney Sweep 
Mark Jarman, If I Were Paul
New  Maurice Manning, The Hill People
He Said/She Said:  Re-Visions of a Poem
Robert Browning, My Last Duchess
Gabriel Spera, My Ex-Husband
Racial Injustice
Countee Cullen, Incident
Natasha Trethewey, Incident
Dreams of Justice:  A Collection of Works by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes, Let America Be America Again (poem)
Langston Hughes, Theme for English B (poem)
Langston Hughes, Harlem (poem)
*Langston Hughes, On the Road (story)
Lessons in Injustice: Stories   
New Jessamyn West, The Lesson
Toni Cade Bambara, The Lesson 
Secret Crimes: Stories
William Faulkner, A Rose for Emily
New Edward J. Delaney, Clean
Revenge: Stories
Edgar Allan Poe, The Cask of Amontillado  
Andre Dubus, Killings 
A Menacing Stalker:  Cultural Contexts for a Story
Joyce Carol Oates, Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been
Cultural Contexts
      *Don Moser, The Pied Piper of Tucson
      *Joyce Carol Oates, Smooth Talk: Short Story into Film
      *Margaret Talbot, from Gone Girl: The Extraordinary Resilience of Elizabeth Smart
Misfit Justice:  Critical Commentaries on a Story 
Flannery O’Connor, A Good Man Is Hard to Find 
Critical Commentaries
      Flannery O’Connor, From Mystery and Manners 
      Martha Stephens, From The Question of Flannery O’Connor
      Stephen Bandy, From “‘One of My Babies’: The Misfit and the Grandmother”
      John Desmond, From “Flannery O’Connor’s Misfit and the Mystery of Evil”
Trials of Marriage: Plays
Susan Glaspell, Trifles 
*Lynn Nottage, POOF!
Recalling a Violent Crime: Essays
*Bruce Shapiro, One Violent Crime
*Emily Bernard, Scar Tissue
The Possible Virtue of Disobeying the Law: Across Genres
Sophocles, Antigone
Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail
11. Journeys

Roads Taken: A Collection of Poems by Robert Frost
Robert Frost, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening 
Robert Frost, The Road Not Taken 
Robert Frost, Acquainted with the Night 
*Robert Frost, The Gift Outright
Visionary Journeys: Poems
*Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Kubla Khan
*Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ozymandias
*William Butler Yeats, Sailing to Byzantium
Mythic Journeys: Poems
*Alfred Lord Tennyson, Ulysses
*Adrienne Rich, Diving into the Wreck
A Journey to Death: Poems
Mary Oliver, When Death Comes
John Donne, Death Be Not Proud
Dylan Thomas, Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night
Wislawa Szymborska, On Death, without Exaggeration
*Emily Dickinson, Because I could not stop for Death
Crossing the Waters:  Poems
Katia Kapovich, The Ferry 
Linda Pastan, Leaving the Island 
Mark Doty, Night Ferry
Errands of Mercy: Stories
William Carlos Williams, The Use of Force 
Eudora Welty, A Worn Path 
Uncertain Quests: Stories
Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown
*Sherman Alexie, This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona
Journeys to a Dark Place: Stories
Ray Bradbury, Mars Is Heaven! 
*Arthur C. Clarke, The Nine Billion Names of God
Kurt Vonnegut, Harrison Bergeron
Fairy Tale Journeys: Re-Visions of a Story
Charles Perrault, Little Red Riding Hood
Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm, Little Red Cap 
Angela Carter, The Company of Wolves
Keep This Boy Running:  Cultural Contexts for a Story
Ralph Ellison, “Battle Royal”
Cultural Contexts:
      Booker T. Washington, Atlanta Exposition Address (The Atlanta Compromise)
      W.E. B. DuBois, Of Mr. Booker T. Washington
      Gunnar Myrdal, Social Equality
From City to Country: Critical Commentaries on a Play
*Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest
Critical Commentaries:
      *Sol Eltis, From Revising Wilde: Society and Subversion in the Plays of Oscar Wilde
      *Tirthankar Bose, From “Oscar Wilde’s Game of Being Earnest”
      *Patricia Flanagan Behrendt, From Oscar Wilde: Eros and Aesthetics
      *Charles Isherwood, From “A Stylish Monster Conquers at a Glance”
*Crossing Boundaries: Essays
Richard Rodriguez, Aria
*Jose Antonio Vargas, My Life as an Undocumented Immigrant
Journeys into Battle: Across Genres
Wilfred Owen, Dulce et Decorum Est (poem) 
Tim O’Brien, The Things They Carried (story) 
*Michael Herr, Scream a Lot  (essay)
Appendix: Critical Approaches to Literature
Contemporary Schools of Criticism
      *Criticism; Feminist Criticism; Psychoanalytic Criticism; Marxist Criticism; Deconstruction; Reader-Response Criticism; Postcolonial Criticism; *Historicism; *Queer Theory
Working with the Critical Approaches
      James Joyce, Counterparts (story) 
      James Joyce, Eveline (story) 

Index of Authors, Titles, and First Lines
Index of Key Terms


Supplemental Materials

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