Take-home #2: some criteria


If ENG457F had been a conference rather than a course, it might well have culminated (a few years after the fact!) in the publication of a volume of essays. Your task for take-home 2 is to write such an introduction for the papers that have been presented this term. The introduction will demonstrate your command of the course content – especially your ability to make connections between the papers and to identify broader contexts and implications. Your job will be more difficult than that of a real conference organizer: they can always reject papers that are irrelevant to the conference theme or that are inferior in quality.

Because many conferences culminate in such collections, there are many models for this exercise: you should have a look at the few particularly relevant ones. Indeed, some of your secondary readings have already been taken from such volumes. If you’ve looked at the book rather than the xerox, you’ll have seen that most collections contain an introductory essay written by the editor(s). See

Susan Fitzmaurice, “Introduction,” Rhetoric, language, and literature: new perspectives on English in the eighteenth century, Language sciences 22.3 (July 2000), pp. 223-230, available on line. Go to U of T library's e-resources page, and find the e-journal Language Sciences.

or Dieter Stein, “Sorting out the variants: standardization and social factors in the English language 1600-1800,” in Towards a standard English, 1600-1800 (Berlin & New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 1994) PE 1083 T69 1994 STL.


The attributes of a good essay collection:


You should be working on this through the rest of the term. On the last day of class (5 December), you’ll have a chance to give a 5-minute report on the results of your own work – and to ask other people about theirs: I’ll announce the sequence of presenters the penultimate week. On the last day of class you’ll also have to explain how your seminar is connected to at least two others. Finally, you will get one brownie point if you can infer my rationale for your position in the sequence of presenters.


DUE:                               It’s due on Friday, December 7th (the last day of term) at 6 pm.

[All term work for half-courses must be submitted by the last day of classes.]

LENGTH:               It should be about 2000-2500 words in length.

FORMAT:             Please put only your student number along with the interesting title.



And don’t forget:

                       Nov 30th:           optional rewrite of take-home #1 (along with original)

                       Dec 7th:            research paper, 1 500-word abstract, take-home #2.