LIT 3040            Ken Harmon
Sports in Literature                         [email protected]
MW 9:35-11:30,  CHS 115                                 Office:  fifth floor of Gateway Center, Suite 530
4.5 Credit Hours                                              Office Hours:  MW 2:45-3:45
Contact Hours:  45 Lecture Hours                                         & by appointment
Winter 2011-2012                                               Office Phone:  (980) 598-3218
Prerequisite:  ENG 1021 or ENG 1921                                  

Required Texts: 

Crossing Boundries:  An International Anthology of Women's Experiences in Sport.          Susan J. Bandy & Anne S. Darden, Eds.  USA:  Human Kinetics, 1999.
       ISBN:  0-7360-0088-7
Malamud, Bernard.  The Natural.  New York:  Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1952 
       (paperback eidtion, 2003).  ISBN:  0-374-50200-5
The Runner's Literary Companion:  Great Stories and Poems about Running. Ed. Garth
       Battista.  New York: Penguin Books, 1994.  ISBN:  978-0-14-025353-5
Wilson, August.  Fences.  USA:  Plume (published by the Penguin Group), 1986.
         ISBN:  0-452-26401-4

Welcome to Sports Literature!

This course focuses on the significant inspiration of athletic endeavors upon the literary and cinematic imagination. We will examine sport as subject, symbol, motif, myth, and metaphor in various types of sports texts, including short stories, longer works of fiction, poetry, non-fiction, drama, and film.   We will investigate the intersection of texts and sport to discover how sport functions in , and what it means to our society (i.e., what sport reveals about our culture).  Writers of fiction and non-fiction, prose writers, and poets have discovered in the athletic experience a useful metaphor to express the very purpose and meaning of life. Modern film explores both the realism and romanticism of sports in popular culture.This course is a university designated writing intensive course and emphasizes the development of critical writing skills. Most of the daily class periods will consist of discussion, lecture, and analysis of assigned readings.  This course fulfills part of the Literature Concentration Requirement.


A three-ring binder for class notes and a place to keep portions of your writing process for major essays
•        A bound notebook of some type for your contemplation journal; must bring this to class everyday.  This will be collected periodically
•        2 or three two-pocket folders



To successfully complete LIT 3040, students should be able to:
1.        Identify, analyze, and explicate the distinguishing characteristics of  short fiction, poetry, plays, and novels as these characteristics have been introduced in class as applied to sports literature
2.Respond to various literary styles and themes through discussion, essays, exams, and research.  Success in this area of response will be measured according to guidelines set forth in class.
3.Develop competence in interpreting, analyzing, and evaluating literature.
4.  To improve the student's ability to read think, speak, and write critically with insight and clarity.
5.Explain and anyalyze the concepts of sport as an expression of certain myths which enhances the allurement of sport.
6.  Identify and analyze the issues and concerns associated with sports such as racial and sexual identity and the struggle of age and youth .


1.Write electronic reader responses of about a page or so for many of the assigned readings (one-two per week, but no more than 10 for the semester).  See “Reader Response Guidelines” on class website for more information. These will be posted electronically to message boards and will require that you respond to the postings of other students as well.
2.Participate actively in class discussions (to include group informal presentations or discussion leadership).
3.Write four literary critical anlaysis essays in the range 4-6  pages each, typed, double-spaced, 12pt. font, Times New Roman, and following the Modern Language Association (MLA) style format and documentation (as necessary). [See “Essay Writing Guidelines,” on class website for more information]

The ideas contained in your papers should belong to you and only you.  Outside sources should not be used.  I will not accept a paper that is not accompanied by a series of rough drafts (each draft should be numbered) and invention work.  Papers that do not follow these guidelines will receive a grade of zero.

You must complete ALL major assignments in order to pass the course.


You can accumulate 400 points, which are distributed as follows:

Participation (25%)
Reader Responses/Journal   40      (10%) = 4pts. each
Contemplation Journal           20      (5%)
Reading Quizzes     40      (10%) (5 points each) 

Papers (75%)
Responding to Short Story      60   (15%)
Responding to Novel               80   (20%)
Responding to Poetry              60   (15%)
Final Exam       100  (25%)

                                                                     Final Grades:
                                                                             360 - 400     A
                                                                             320 - 359     B
                                                                            280 - 319     C
                                                                             240 - 279     D
                                                                                 0 - 239     F


Taking classes is your job here at the university. Thus, you should treat the work and requirements accordingly. In the workplace things such as absences, tardiness, and not doing your work properly have negative consequences. This is the case in my class as well. Many students’ low grades are a result of not following directions or policies as well as not expending enough effort. It is your responsibility to be aware of the policies on this syllabus. If you miss class it is your responsibility to check with your classmates to find out what you have missed. And though you are always welcome to follow up with me if you are absent, do not ask me if you “missed anything important.”

Your grade is dependent on a number of factors that, together and holistically, inform the evaluation and assessment of your performance. In summary, these criteria include attendance, participation, reading responses/journal entries, reading quizzes, and the successful completion of any other reading and written assignments(which include 3 major essays and and a final exam that is all essay) .

Note: The reading load is quite heavy and the pace fast. Also, because writing is a means of discovery and a pathway to understanding, it is an important activity in this class in conjunction with the reading. Indeed, you should think of your writing as a mode of reading that will help you begin to understand the literature at hand. When essays, journals, and in-class assignments are considered together you will be doing some kind of writing assignment every week. Be prepared to spend much time carefully reading, considering, discussing, and writing about the texts in the course. If you cannot devote the time necessary to keep up with the assignments, and to do so in a critical manner, you will not do well in this class and may want to consider if this is the right class for you.


PLAGARISM:  All course assignments ask you to write using what you have learned in the course and using your own thinking and writing skills.  If you use any ideas, paraphrases, or exact wording from a source other than yourself (including the textbook), you must document the source using MLA parenthetical documentation style (see handbook or ask instructor).  Any source used but not documented will be considered plagiarism, for which you will receive a failing grade for the course.  You might also be placed on probation or expelled from the university.  If you have any questions about plagiarism, ask before you act.  Ask me; see “Academic Policies” in the Student Handbook.

A. Plagiarism, a SERIOUS academic violation, is the use of WORDS, IDEAS, or STRUCTURES of others (published sources, friends, relatives) without acknowledgment.  There is no excuse for willful plagiarism.
B.  Except where appropriate (quoting or paraphrasing from primary or secondary sources), your work is presumed to be totally your own writing (i.e. original).
C.  When you QUOTE OR PARAPHRASE FROM ANY sources, you MUST cite them with appropriate specific documentation (usually author and page number in parentheses + Works Cited list at end).  This includes subject matter of the essay.  If you quote or paraphrase precisely from a work of literature, you must cite the author of that work. 
D.  Proper handling of  the ideas of others includes the introduction of a source the first time it is used and the use of author tags when paraphrasing or directly quoting.
E.  If you do not understand the format for documenting sources, see me for help before turning in an essay.  Refer to your handbook for further clarification.
For other questions about plagiarism see
and see attached handout.

NOTE:  Although the above passages explain the proper handling of  the ideas of others, for this course you are not to use outside resources whatsoever.  Although you will be quoting passage from the works we read as a calss, the ideas about those passages found in your essays should be your own.   Plagiarism is considered a serious act of academic misconduct and may result in the student receving an F in the course or being suspended from the university.

TURNITIN.COM:  All major essays written for this course must be submitted electronically to no later than classtime on the date that an assignment is due.  Essays that are not uploaded to will not be accepted.

ATTENDANCE:  Students are expected to attend all classes and earn credit for complete classes and in-class assignments.  You are allowed two absences (excused or unexcused) without penalty. Five absences (excused or unexcused) will result in automatic failure.  If you do not attend a student conference, you will be considered absent.  After two absences your final grade for the semester will be reduced as shown.
You are responsible for tracking your absences.

AbsencesPoints deducted from final grade




It is the student’s responsibility to initiate procedures leading to a formal withdrawal (“WP” or "WF) in order to avoid a failing (“F”) grade.  To receive a WP OR WF grade, a student must withdraw prior to January 20, 2012.  In order to qualify for a WP, the student must have an estimated grade of 60 or higher at the time of withdrawal.  If the estimated grade is less than 60, the student will be issued a WF, which is entered into the term and cumulative GPA as a failing grade until successul completion of the course at a later date.

TARDIES:  If a student is more than 10 minutes late for class or leaves more than 10 minutes before class is over, they are counted absent for the day.

PROFESSIONAL DRESS:  You must follow the academic dress policy as it is explained in the Student Handbook (pp. 56-58), including wearing your nametag.  Headphones, tennis shoes/sneakers & hats/head coverings are not allowed in the academic building except scarves for religious purposes.

ETIQUETTE:  Students are expected to respect their classmates’ time and learning environment.  Therefore, show up for class prepared and on time.  Turn off all cell phones before entering the classroom.   Each time a cell phone disrupts class, the entire class will take a pop quiz.  If a student leaves the classroom to answer a call, they will be counted absent for the day. Students caught texting during classtime will be counted absent for the day.  Other disruptive classroom behavior, defined as anything that would interfere with “an instructor’s ability to conduct the class” or “The ability of other students to profit from the instructional program,” is strictly prohibited.


NOTE:  Persons other than registered students are not allowed to attend academic sessions, laboratory classes, computer labs, and other University academically supported areas.

LATE PAPER/ASSIGNMENT POLICY:  Turn in all your assignments on their scheduled due dates.  You must submit all essays and required materials in a 2-pocket folder (final draft, reflection, rough draft, workshop sheets, revision plans, photocopies of sources, collecting notes, and relevant journal entries).  NO PROCESS, NO GRADE.  Keep a duplicate copy of all assignments you turn in.  I DO NOT ACCEPT LATE WORK;  However, under special circumstances it may be considered.  Any late assignments (if accepted by instructor) will be penalized one letter grade for each 24-hour day late.  Any in class projects, writings, or quizzes cannot be made up.

REVISION:  You may rewrite one failing essay (original grade of D or F); the rewritten essay may receive no higher than a “C.”  Revisions must accompany the original graded copy

STUDENT E-MAIL:  Students are required to obtain and use a JWU e-mail account for University communication and to access my public folders.  You must obtain your password to do so.  Student accounts are created automatically for those who are active and in good standing.  Student email addresses are available through uconnect at  A student email address is [email protected].  Students should go to to logon and access their email.  Immediately contact the helpdesk at 1-866-598-4357 if you need assistance.  Take care of this the first day of class.  Students are expected to maintain an email account throughout the semester and check it daily for important information regarding upcoming assignments, course announcements, etc.

IN-CLASS ASSIGNMENTS:  Students will often complete in-class assignments and short writing projects.  In-class projects are scheduled for a specific class period and cannot be made up after that class date.

PARTICIPATION:  Come to class prepared to discuss the assigned readings. Contribute productively to discussion.  Quizzes and in-class writings are usually based on the readings.


WRITING CENTER:  Located in the academic building, 4th floor, the writing center is open to all Johnson & Wales University  students who need help with writing, whether they are taking an English course or not. Students are encouraged to seek assistance with essays, research projects, and related assignments.  Students are asked to make an appointment with a Writing Center staff member in order to receive prompt assistance.  The center provides 30 minute appointments and is staffed from 8:30-2:30 M-R.  Consultants work with students on any part of the writing process -- planning, drafting, focusing, organizing, revising, or editing, and with papers from all disciplines. Please do not hesitate to use the tutor’s assistance.  Remember to bring a copy of your assignment and your drafts to any Writing Center conference.
Going to the Writing Center does not guarantee you a good grade because tutors will not proofread your papers.  The Writing Center’s goal is to improve your overall writing skills (organization, thesis & supporting paragraphs, audience/assignment issues, as well as teaching punctuation and grammar rules after reviewing big picture issues), which sometimes takes several sessions, depending on your existing writing skills.  For more information, you may contact them at [email protected]
You may also visit the Center for Academic Support website at:

ACCOMODATIONS:  Johnson & Wales University is dedicated to providing access to education. While maintaining the highest academic integrity, the University strives to balance scholarship with support services which will assist special needs students in functioning in the University's academic environment. Reasonable accommodations are available with proper documentation, and can be discussed with the director of The Center For Academic Support (4th floor of the Academic Building).
Because some programs of study have technical standards and requirements, applicants and students with special needs or physical disabilities should contact the director of the Center for Academic Support to discuss the availability of reasonable accommodations where appropriate. Copies of the technical standards applicable to various programs are available from this office.  Once you have arranged accommodations with this office, please tell me so that I am aware of your accommodations well before the first paper/assignment.