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Guess what, we ARE done

A quick note to let you know that I extended the period during which you can access the course on D2L, to the end of this month, so that you all will have a chance to check for my comments on your various assignments. Do not hesitate to get in touch with any questions.

Also, if you haven’t discovered it already: the marks have been sent in to the Registrar’s office. If there are any issues please do not hesitate to get in touch. I am here.

Right here.

Not going anywhere.

You were a good class and I enjoyed getting to know you over the term. We certainly got thrown off track in March, but you stepped up, kept going, and finished the term. Congratulations! You will always remember this term, I bet.

I hope to see some of you in future classes.



I just uploaded the final presentation slides to D2L. I will be online tomorrow on Microsoft Teams for our final scheduled meeting, though if I am a little late, it is because I have a departmental meeting just beforehand.

Send me your assignments either via email or through D2L. I will be in touch to confirm your grading preferences if I haven’t heard from you. I intend to work out everyone’s marks, in case you still trying to decide.

Talk to you soon.

ENGL1001—Quiz 2

  • These are the instructions and questions that are on D2L.
  • This quiz consists of four questions. Choose two of them to complete.
  • It is open-book (obviously), so you are free to look at outside sources. That is not necessary, however. If you do use outside sources, please cite them fully. However, I am more interested in what you have to say.
  • If you don’t want or are unable to complete the test on D2L, you may send me a text file by 4pm today (Thursday April 2).
  • Contact me with any questions or problems at

Complete TWO of these four questions:

Question 1

Ibsen’s The Doll’s House and Pollack’s Blood Relations both engage with women’s roles in the nineteenth century. Ibsen wrote in the then-new mode of Realism, whereas Pollack created a “dream thesis” in her metadrama. Write apoximately 100–150 words comparing what each play reveals about gender, and how it reveals it.

Question 2

Alice Munro said in an interview, “I want to tell a story, in the old-fashioned way—what happens to somebody—but I want that ‘what happens’ to be delivered with quite a bit of interruption, turnarounds, and strangeness.” In contrast, Ernest Hemingway subscribed to the “iceberg theory” of fiction: that most of the story should be below the water line. Compare “A Clean, Well-lighted Place” with “A Friend of My Youth” in terms of language, characterization, and narrative structure. Write approximately 100–150 words.

Question 3 

Compare Ursula LeGuin’s “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omalas” and Octavia Butler’s “Speech Sounds” in terms of at least three of the following: genre, narrative voice, narrative arc, characterization, literary form. Write approximately 100–150 words.

Question 4

Thomas King’s “A Short History of Indians in Canada” is a fabulist tale while Richard Wagamese’s “Finding Father” is a memoir, yet the narratives could be seen as connected. Discuss how, despite the differences in genre, style, and tone, the two texts intersect in terms of theme and meaning. Write approximately 100–150 words.

Quiz 2

Hello all.

The quiz should be available on D2L from 8am to 4pm tomorrow. The suggested time is two hours, though I don’t think you will need that. I have not set a timer so you have the whole day. The test consists of two essay questions out of a possible four, so I hope there is enough choice so that everyone feels comfortable. It is open book; outside sources are not required but if you do look elsewhere, please include a bibliography.

As a backup, I will put a post up on this blog with the questions as of 8am tomorrow morning.

If you have trouble inputting your answers to D2L you can always just send me a text file, as long as you do it by the 4pm deadline.

If anyone has insurmountable difficulties with doing this tomorrow, for example if you are working a full shift, then get in touch and we will work out an alternative.

Email me if you have any problems or questions, at

[I am going to send this post as an email to your UNB addresses.]


We have been having some pretty interesting discussions online and several recommendations for reading or viewing have come up. I thought I would list some of them here; if I have missed anything, or if you would like to offer a suggestion, please add it to the comments. I will add to this post throughout the rest of the term.

  • Ursula K. Le Guin, The Left Hand of Darkness (about gender); The Dispossessed (about social inequality). Bonus link: Ursula K. Le Guin on being a man
  • Octavia Butler, Xenogenesis series (about what makes us human); Kindred (about slavery)
  • The Silence (movie about predators that follow sound; criticized by deaf advocates)
  • The Quiet Place (movie about predators that follow sound; praised by deaf advocates). And, there is a forthcoming sequel.
  • Richard Wagamese, Indian Horse (novel)
  • Thomas King, An Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America (non-fiction)
  • Bev Sellars, They Called Me Number One (memoir about the residential school system)
  • Cherie Dimaline, The Marrow Thieves (YA dystopian novel about future where Indigenous people are hunted for their ability to dream)


(Most of the) marking is done, though I have a couple of rewrites to chase down. Grades are posted. A couple of you have on-line comments in D2L but most will have to wait for me to upload comments from the hard copies. A couple of you have emails.

And, apologies that the presentation was late going up! I did say it would be up by 5pm, but was in a UNB Senate meeting. Online, of course.

See you tomorrow. Well, I probably won’t see you

Back in the saddle

Welcome back, everyone!

You will have received information from the University administration about changes to academic regulations for the rest of term. In a nutshell, we want you all to finish your term as easily as possible under the circumstances, and to that end, here are the new UNB-wide guidelines:

  • Students may withdraw without academic penalty up to and including the last date of Winter term, Thursday, April 9, 2020. Courses dropped before this time will be shown as “W” on their transcript. If they have already withdrawn from a course and received a “WF”, their transcript notation will be changed to a “W”.
  • Students will be able to choose whether they are taking each class for a letter grade (A–F) or for credit/no credit (CR/NCR). Students must inform their instructor if they choose to take the class for credit/no credit by the withdrawal deadline (i.e., Thursday, April 9, 2020). If students choose to take the class for credit/no credit, they are still expected to complete all course requirements, including the final exam, if applicable. Students should be aware of what it means to take a class for credit/no credit:
    • Courses marked as CR (credit):
      • will count towards program requirements,
      • will count as credit hours completed,
      • will count as a pre-requisite,
      • will not be assigned grade points, meaning it will not negatively (or positively) affect a student’s GPA.
    • Courses marked as NCR (no credit):
      • will not count towards program requirements,
      • will count as credit hours attempted,
      • will not count as a pre-requisite,
      • will not be assigned grade points, meaning it will not negatively (or positively) affect a student’s GPA.

Here are the changes for the rest of the term for our course:

  • the schedule and requirements have been revised
  • lecture materials will be available via D2L by the end of the day before class (i.e. by 5pm on Monday or Wednesday).
  • I will open a Microsoft Teams session on each day and time that our class was previously scheduled (i.e. each T/Th from 11:30am to 12:50pm between March 24 and April 9). Attendance is not mandatory but it is advised. Students can drop in for the whole or a part of the time and ask any questions or offer any thoughts about the day’s reading, the lecture material, or the course in general. You could also use that time to work on, and ask me about, your final written assignment. If you are unable to log in for whatever reason but want to get in touch, please do not hesitate to contact me by other means.

In terms of the course requirements:

  • The second (and final) quiz will be on April 2. It will be online and open-book. There will be flexibility as to when on April 2nd you can write. Those needing accommodations should be in contact with Student Services. More details to come.
  • The third (and final) written assignment will be due by the end of classes (i.e. 4pm on April 9). If you want your mark earlier in order to decide whether to opt for a grade or credit/non-credit, please get it to me by 4pm on April 7. Submit it either through D2L or via email. If you need an extension, please discuss it with me beforehand.
  • You may rewrite either of the first two assignments and hand them in any time before the end of the exam period (April 24th) and I will average the grades. Submit any rewrites either through D2L or via email.
  • The final exam is cancelled and the grading scheme has been adjusted.

Please get in touch if any of this presents any sort of difficulty (and please fill out the tech access poll). I am committed to being as flexible and accommodating as possible, and we will be able to work out a solution to any difficulty.