© The City College


Workers in Fact, Fiction, and Film
Instructor: David Hamilton Golland

Announcements and Emergency Information

December 27: I am waiting for one more student to turn in an essay before I post the grades. All other grades are done, so students can feel free to e-mail me for their grades.

Jump To:
  • Description and Objectives
  • Exam Rules
  • Classroom Etiquette
  • Required Texts
  • Grade Weighting
  • Absence Policy
  • Tests
  • Journal
  • Recommended Books and Films
  • Essay

    Online Syllabus and Course Guide

    This website contains the schedule of assignments, completed quizzes, a list of possible identifications questions, professor Golland's contact information, important online links, and all the supplemental readings (online handouts) needed for the course. Please select an item from the list at the left. The information is available in lieu of a hard-copy syllabus.

    Mondays and Wednesdays

    Description and Objectives:
    This course will examine the life, treatment, and role of workers of both sexes and multiple ethnicities in the United States, from before the Civil War to the present. Through an examination of films, works of fiction, and general reference to previous scholars of the subject, students will emerge with a fuller understanding of the importance of workers in the United States and the challenges faced by workers in the development of a capitalist-industrial society.

    Required Texts:

    Laura Hapke, Labor’s Text (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2001)
    John Bodnar, Blue Collar Hollywood (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006)

    William Attaway, Blood on the Forge
    William Dean Howells, The Rise of Silas Lapham
    Edward Bellamy, Looking Backward
    Upton Sinclair, The Jungle
    Jack London, The Iron Heel
    John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath
    Cheri Register, Packinghouse Daughter

    Students will keep a journal of their thoughts on matters related to the course. There should be at least one entry for each class session. In addition, students may wish to include thoughts at relevant moments outside of class.

    This course will have formal, in-class, midterm and final examinations.

    Exam Rules
    Please observe these rules carefully. Infraction will result in lost points.

    *Please clear your desks of all items except a writing implement prior to the start of the quiz or exam.
    *Keep your eyes on your own quiz or exam.
    *No pencil or red ink.
    *Write your name first; no extra time will be alloted at the end to write your name.
    *Do not speak during the quiz or exam. If you have a question, raise your hand and the instructor will come to your seat.
    *You may not leave the classroom during the quiz or exam. If you must leave for an emergency, turn in your quiz or exam; you're finished. So please handle biological functions in advance.
    *If you finish early, please wait quietly until the instructor has called the time.

    Grade Weighting:
    Participation: 20%
    Journal: 20%
    Midterm Examination: 20%
    Analytical Essay: 20%
    Final Examination: 20%

    Recommended Books and Films:

    Recommended Books:
    Tillie Olsen, Life in the Iron Mills
    Jean Toomer, Cane
    Theodore Dreiser, Sister Carrie
    Theresa Malkiel, The Diary of a Shirtwaist Striker
    Evan Connell, Mrs. Bridge
    Sinclair Lewis, Babbitt
    Jack Conroy, The Disinherited
    Myra Page, Daughter of the Hills
    Harriett Arnow, The Dollmaker
    Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man
    Ben Hamper, Rivethead

    Recommended Films:
    “Gangs of New York”
    “Heaven will Protect the Working Girl”
    ”Compagni, I” (“The Organizer”)
    ”Black Legion”
    “Union Maids”
    ”Uprising of ‘34”
    ”With Babies and Banners”
    “Rosie the Riveter”
    ”9 to 5”
    ”American Dream”
    ”Blue Collar”
    ”Coal Miner's Daughter”
    ”Harvest of Shame”
    ”Norma Rae”
    ”On the Waterfront”
    ”Harlan County, U.S.A.”
    ”Out at Work”
    ”Salt of the Earth”

    Classroom Etiquette:
  • Cellphones and Beepers: For the sake of your fellow students, please remember to silence your phones and pagers. Each time your phone rings during the class may result in as much as one point off your final grade--at my discretion. Please notify me if you are an emergency services worker on call while off-duty.

  • Eating and Drinking: As long as you clean up after yourself, I have no problem with eating or drinking in the classroom. It should go without saying that "drinking" refers to non-alcoholic beverages.

  • You will be treated like an adult, so you are expected to behave like an adult. When class has started, you are expected to be attentive to the lesson. You don't need permission to leave the room, just do it. But you have a responsibility to arrive in class on time and not leave class more than absolutely necessary.

  • Dismissal Distractions: Packing up or otherwise making noise prior to my dismissal of the class is an unnecessary distraction both to me and your fellow students. Accordingly, each time you do so may result in as much as one point off your final grade--also at my discretion. Please notify me in advance if you need to leave early for any reason.

    Absence Policy/Missed Quizzes/Missed Exams:

  • Attendance will be taken. According to CUNY policy, students who miss four such quizzes will automatically fail the course. However, students will automatically be excused from three readings quizzes OR one map quiz, whichever is most beneficial to the student's final grade. Students who do not miss a map quiz or three quizzes will have their three lowest quiz grades automatically excused.

  • No students will be retroactively excused from the midterm examination for any reason other than an emergency, which must be documented. Students who know in advance that they will need to miss the midterm may inform the profesor and have the documentation requirement waived. All makeup midterms, whether arranged in advance or due to a documented emergency, will carry a penalty.

  • Students who otherwise succesfully complete the course but fail to attend the final examination will receive a grade of ABS (absent from final) and will be required to attend a makeup examination during the following semester. Failure to attend the makeup final exam will result in immediate failure of the course.

  • Students who are absent from the final examination but would have failed the course based on pre-final exam performance will not receive a grade of ABS but will automatically fail the course. Such students who also were absent for quizzes 12-18 (10-14 in the summer) will receive a grade of WU, or "Withdrawn Unofficially," which is the equivalent of a grade of F.

    All students will be expected to complete a 5-7 page essay as part of the course. The topic can be of your own choosing, but the essay must integrate portions of the Hapke text, at least two of the films viewed in class, at least two of the required fiction books, and at least one recommended book and one recommended film. Essay topics are due October 6, and a rough draft is due the day of the midterm, October 27. The final essay is due Wednesday, November 26.

    Disclaimer: None of the above shall be construed to supercede City College/CUNY policy or local, state, or federal laws. Any instructions or information on this website found to be in violation of said policies or laws can and should be ignored.

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    Last Updated 18 October, 2009 (DHG)