Almost every session we’ll have a short reading quiz on the assigned texts or media. These are multiple choice and write-in and are not mean to measure deep or critical comprehension, but rather whether you’ve read the text with your mind turned on and your attention focused. If you follow the main ideas and themes and have a general sense of the orientation of the text you will do very well. You will not be tested on small details or obscure facts or sub arguments. If you do poorly on these you may have to alter your reading practices (taking notes, reading in a different space or time of the day, etc.).
This aspect of your work in the class consists in engaging discussion, asking questions and offering comments, coming to office hour, and posting comments on the blog material. Refer to the syllabus for more commentary on engagement and how to be successful in this class.
Throughout the quarter you will keep a reading journal that collects your thoughts, key passages, and questions as you engage the course materials and lecture narrative. You will create a Google Document and share it directly with me, and periodically make entries processing your experience of the class and the course readings and media. This is a space of exploration, reflection, and insight meant to aid your understanding of the course ideas and track your own intellectual development. These are also a way for me to see what the class is grappling with and use that information to modify and adapt my lecture material to the group.
Discussion Report (Group)
Once in the quarter you will hold an out-of-class discussion of an assigned text with your Working Group and produce a discussion report that outlines what was of interest and productive for your thought (passages, ideas) and collects the key insights and questions generated in the discussion. On the day of the whole-class discussion of the material you will also serve as primary discussants, offering the community starting points, observations, and commentary.
Critical Meme (Group)
Also in collaboration with your Working Groups you will create what we will be calling a “critical meme” image that provides insight into a key passage or idea in an assigned text. These images will be posted to the website before the day of our discussion of the source text so that we can use them as a resource in our whole-class discussion.
Finally, at the end of the quarter you will create an entry into a course casebook reflecting on the themes of the class. There will be prompted projects to select from, or you can design your own. These can be mixed media or tradition short papers. These are not research papers and will not require any work on materials outside of the class (though you are free to do so).