Unit 1 Memoir – Week 2 Course Content and Objectives

seventies class

Monday/Tuesday 8/31 or 9/1

Angle of Vision – the way the author chooses to present the narrative.

  • Go over annotations of handouts
  • Factors of angle of vision (HANDOUT – Angle of Vision and Rhetorical Triangle)
  • Angle of vision as a lens – in class writing — “The Party” – write email to grandmother, then write it to a friend.
  • Rhetorical triangle  — discussion of which rhetorical appeal we should rely on for open form
  • Exploratory strategies — (freewriting, idea mapping) (HANDOUT – Exploratory Strategies)
  • Use exploratory strategies to work on memoir assignment (in-class writing)


  • Read Handout “Composing and Revising Open-Form Prose.”
  • Begin first draft of memoir. Bring 4 copies of draft to class on Wednesday 9/2

Wednesday /Thursday 9/2 or 9/3

Scale of Abstraction

  • Review Reading assignment “Composing and  Revising Open-form Prose”
  • Scale of Abstraction — Concrete, Revelatory, Memory-Soaked Words
  • Peer Review of papers

Homework: This is a work- heavy week/weekend, but we will take a breather once we turn in revision.

  • Read “The Estrangement” in “Links to Essays That Are Sure to Thrill.” Also read “The Fourth State of Matter” and one other essay of your choice from that list.
  • Read pp. 1-32 of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
That’s all. There is a lot of reading. No written response. Hold off on revising your drafts until I have given you my feedback in class on Wednesday/Thursday. 
On Wednesday/Thursday, I will return your drafts and we will go over global issues I have found. Then we will have ONE REVISION.
Turn in a final draft to me on Monday, 9/14, (or Tuesday  9/15) along with a one-page response ( double spaced, typed) indicating the changes you made during the revision process and why you chose to make them. Remember that a response is just a personal response, but it should have paragraphs and complete statements. no bullet points. It is essentially a letter to me explaining what you did and why you did it. If it goes over into two pages, that’s okay, as long as you aren’t being redundant. As with anything you write now for the rest of your life, think of your purpose and your audience. Go as deeply as you need to go. Closer examination of your reasons help you to practice critical thinking.

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