Studies in Renaissance Literature; The Habits of Mind

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2022 • 3 Pages • 150.15 KB • English
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Summary of Studies in Renaissance Literature; The Habits of Mind

ENGL A421 Studies in Renaissance Literature: The Habits of Mind Loyola University New Orleans Spring 2018 TR 11–12:15 Location tbd Dr. Hillary Eklund [email protected] Bobet 326 Office Hours TR 2–3:15 & by appointment This syllabus is subject to change. Course Description and Objectives The phrase “habits of mind” refers to the behaviors people engage when they encounter information or problems that are difficult to understand and work through. While the phrase has gained currency in education theory for the last few decades, this course focuses on an earlier age of educational innovation: the Renaissance. Our two central questions: how did people in early modern Europe (mainly England) respond to new, conflicting, or challenging information and situations? How did they represent these responses in literary texts? Reading across genres, we will focus on six particular habits of mind that are particularly evident in early modern texts: (1) listening with a desire to understand; (2) cultivating precision in language; (3) using all the senses to gather and retain information; (4) interrogating what and how we know; (5) applying past information to current situations; (6) imagining and creating new ideas, knowledge, and worlds. In addition to exploring how early modern writers practiced and represented these habits of mind, we will explore their relevance in our own age of misinformation and “alternative facts.” Students who successfully complete this course will be able to • Identify problem-­‐solving habits of mind in a variety of Renaissance texts • Situate Renaissance texts in their specific historical, literary, and generic contexts • Analyze the relation between Renaissance literary forms and content • Respond to contemporary critical discourse on Renaissance literature • Apply the habits of mind evident in Renaissance texts to contemporary situations Required Texts Baldesar Castiglione, The Book of the Courtier. New York: Norton, 2002. $20.75. ISBN: 978-­‐0393976069 Margaret Cavendish, The Blazing World and Other Writings. New York: Penguin, 1994. $17.00. ISBN: 978-­‐0140433722 John Milton, Paradise Lost. New York: Penguin, 2003. $12.00. ISBN: 978-­‐0140424393 William Shakespeare, Othello. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2003. $14.97. ISBN: 978-­‐0521535175 Other assigned readings and important documents will be available on our Blackboard site. Renaissance Literature & the Habits of Mind 2 Course Work Participation (10%) Participation is a daily demonstration of your preparedness for class and respect for the academic community. It includes actively listening, asking thoughtful questions, engaging verbally in discussions, contributing fully to group work, completing in-­‐class writing activities, meeting with instructor, and using office hours and e-­‐mail to address any challenges you are experiencing in the course. Participation emphatically does not include the use of a cell phone. Students found using a phone during class for any reason whatsoever will incur severe penalties on their participation grade. Short writing assignments (10 X 3% each; 30%) These assignments will include creative, reflective, and analytical prompts designed to deepen your engagement with the course material and help you identify connections between course work and the world beyond our classroom walls. Discussion (15%) You’ll work with a partner to start discussion on a day of your choosing, offering a substantive response to the assigned reading and posing questions for the class. There is no written component to this assignment. Midterm paper (15%) An analytical essay (1200-­‐1500 words) that argues a specific, contestable, not obvious thesis using evidence from an assigned primary text and some secondary research. Final research project (30%) You will develop a topic in consultation with me. This project must include a written component and, depending on the length of your paper, some other dimension relevant to your interests. Here are a few ideas, but I encourage you to brainstorm other options and discuss them with me: a teaching unit for middle or high school students; one or more artistic illustrations of concepts in your research; a remix of elements from the semester’s reading designed to promote a habit of mind. Renaissance Literature & the Habits of Mind 3 Attendance Policy In order to be marked as present, students must attend class with a copy of the assigned reading. Students are allowed 3 unexcused absences without penalty. Only those absences incurred on official Loyola business (such as a concert or an away game) will be excused. All other absences, including those due to illness, are considered unexcused. Any unexcused absence beyond 3, regardless of the reason for it, will result in a reduction of the final grade by 1/3 of a letter grade (B-­‐ to C+ and so on). Students who accumulate 10 or more absences will automatically fail the course without exception. If you arrive after attendance is taken, it is your responsibility to notify me that you were, in fact, present. Late Work Policy Late papers will incur a penalty of one letter grade per day. Students are responsible for using Blackboard competently. In the extremely unlikely event of a Blackboard malfunction, students may submit papers by e-­‐mail. Writing Across the Curriculum Writing is a process. You should start your writing assignments well before the due date and have another person review your work before you turn it in. Free peer writing consultation is available in the WAC Lab, located in Marquette Hall. Personal Technology Students may bring laptops and e-­‐readers to use in class but are encouraged to take notes the old fashioned way, with pens and notebooks. Absolutely no cell phone use is permitted. Disability Accommodations Loyola University New Orleans is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to all persons with disabilities. If you have a disability that may affect your access to course materials and/or your work in this class, you may contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS) [[email protected], 504-­‐865-­‐2990] to establish accommodations. If you already have accommodations, please work with ODS to notify all your instructors through ClockWork! In Case of Emergency At times, ordinary university operations are interrupted as a result of tropical storms, hurricanes, or other emergencies that require evacuation or suspension of on-­‐campus activities. To prepare for such emergencies, all students will do the following during the first week of classes: 1. Practice signing on for each course through Blackboard. 2. Provide regular and alternative e-­‐mail address and phone contact information to each instructor. In the event of an interruption to our course due to the result of an emergency requiring an evacuation or suspension of campus activities, students will: 3. Pack textbooks, assignments, syllabi and any other needed materials for each course ad bring during an evacuation/suspension 4. Keep up with course work during the evacuation/suspension as specified on course syllabi and on-­‐line Blackboard courses. 5. Complete any reading and/or writing assignments given by professors before emergency began. Assuming a power source is available.... 6. Logon to university website within 48 hours of an evacuation/suspension. 7. Monitor the main university site ( for general information. 8. Logon to each course through Blackboard or e-­‐mail within 48 hours of an evacuation/suspension to receive further information regarding contacting course instructors for assignments, etc. 9. Complete Blackboard and/or other online assignments posted by professors (students are required to turn in assignments on time during the evacuation/suspension period and once the university campus has reopened.) 10. Contact professors during an evacuation/suspension (or as soon as classes resume on campus) to explain any emergency circumstances that may have prevented them from completing expected work. Further information about student responsibilities in emergencies is available on the Academic Affairs web site:­‐emergency-­‐responsibilities. Grading Scale A = 94-­‐100; A-­‐ = 91-­‐93; B+ = 88-­‐90; B = 84-­‐87; B-­‐ = 81-­‐83; C+ = 78-­‐80; C = 74-­‐77; C-­‐ = 71-­‐73; D+ = 68-­‐70; D = 64-­‐67; F = 0-­‐63