Read this page closely, print it, and put it with all of the other printed material for our seminar. It is extremely important that you are aware of all of my expectations below.
This is a reading-intensive course. I choose my books careful especially because of the high cost of text books. By putting many of my readings on this syllabus and providing others as hand-outs, I hope to save you money.
Please treat your books and other readings as objects of quasi-religious devotion. You expect you to read everything to do so as closely and as carefully as possible.
Erich Maria Remarque, All Quiet on the Western Front
Eli Wiesel, Night
Yevgenia Ginzburg, Journey into the Whirlwind
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
Carolina Maria de Jesus, Child of the Dark
In addition to these books, we will also read excerpts from the works of other great writers, such as Dante Alighieri, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Hannah Arendt, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Pope Francis.
Class discussions are the most important part of this seminar. Our discussions will only work if everyone in the seminar participates. I realize that we all have different personalities; some of us are loud, others are quiet; some are more outgoing, others more reserved. I don’t expect to change any of your personalities. Rather, I plan to work with each of you on an individual to ensure that you get the most out of the seminar.
Our discussions will only work if you have the readings physically in front of you. Therefore, you are required to do two things:
1) Copy and print all of the readings on this site that are marked PRINT (otherwise, you do not need to copy them);
2) Bring each required reading to class on the day we are to discuss it. To make your life easier, I strongly recommend that you print all of the required readings immediately and put them into some kind of orderly binder.
It is a special privilege to take a seminar. You should treat our seminar accordingly. Seminars are small and they allow for intimate and lively discussions. They also provide me with the pleasant opportunity to work closely with each of you as individuals.
My aspirations are modest. I merely want to teach you to speak, read, write, think critically, and persuade. If I accomplish these tasks in working with each of you, I will be pleased. These objectives are reflected in the breakdown of my grading standard.
Sakai Discussions and Short Assignments (10%)
Two Reflective Essays (15% each)
Semester Essay (30%)
Paper assignments will be docked 1/3 of a letter grade for each day they are late.
Class attendance is MANDATORY. Unless you are ill, you must consult with me beforehand if you know you will miss a class. If you are ill, please send me an email so that I do not worry about you. Of course, university-approved absences are fine, but please remind me beforehand if you will be gone.
This course is all about communication. Therefore, I welcome all of the conversations you have with each other, inside or outside class. You are perfectly welcome to discuss your readings and writing assignments with each other. In fact, I encourage it. However, every writing assignment you turn in to me must be clearly, unmistakably, and unequivocally your own work!
I enjoy meeting with all of my students, and I hope to see each of you on a regular basis. You do not need to have specific questions about the class. I view your education holistically, and I am interested in learning about you personally.
I hold my office hours at the Nanovic Institute for European Studies, 211 Brownson Hall. This building is behind the Main Building. Go through the black, wrought iron gate at the north end of Brownson and make an immediate right up the stairs.
My office hours are:
Tuesday 2:00 – 4:00
Wednesday 1:00 – 2:00
& by appointment
Please do not use any form of electronic or cosmic technology during class time. Bad Karma.