EOS Summer 2001--ENGL A2E (section 001):
Reading, Writing and Thinking in the Academic Community

Instructor: Sandra Jamieson
Peer tutor: Josefina Almonte

Course Description
Ground Rules
Books & supplies
Daily Schedule
Meeting times, etc
Writers' Resources
Writing Assignments


Health Warning!
What is true of all courses is especially true of writing courses:  you get as much out of them as you put into them.  Be prepared to flex the muscles of your mind this summer.  This course will provide an intellectual workout to get you in shape for academic writing at Drew.  Like all workouts, its effectiveness depends on YOU!

I will go over these assignments in class on the day they are given (see the syllabus), but please ask me to explain anything that isn’t clear!  If you don’t ask, you’ll never know.

Vocabulary Logs

In class every Thursday 
Each week you will hand in a list of new vocabulary words you came across as you did your reading for this and other classes.  As you read, try to understand unfamiliar words in context, but underline them so you can go back to them later.  Only look them up if you really don’t understand the sentence they are in.  When you have finished the reading and made notes, go back and look at those underlined words and look them up (there’s an on-line dictionary at <http://work.ucsd.edu:5141/cgi-bin/http_webster>).  List the new words and their meanings on the vocabulary log sheets I will give you in class (ask me if you need more!)  There is no shortcut for increasing your vocabulary, but learning words in context and then writing them out will help you to remember the new words.  Try using them when you talk, too!

New York Times Responses

Various due dates (check syllabus)
You will write at least eight of these this summer.  Read/scan the Times on-line and look for interesting stories.  Sometimes I will tell you that these stories need to connect with issues we are discussing in class, but if you read every day you can select anything that you find interesting.  Then go to the “File” menu and select “send page.”  Type my address (sjamieso@drew.edu) in the address box and also your own address, so you’ll receive a copy.  In the message window you’ll see a URL (the Internet address of the page requested).  Insert the curser right above that address and type a response to me.  If you’d rather type the response using WordPerfect, you can paste it into the email message area (this is the safest method as you have then saved a copy of your response).  In the response, tell me what you found to be interesting about the article, what connections you see between the issue there and the texts you’ve been reading in your classes this summer, and why the issue is important.  You can then respond in any way you like to the content of the article. 

(Try to make these at least half a page long.  More is better–stretch the muscles of your mind!!)

Paper #1

Due on July 2
In class writing:  Write a narrative of the intellectual journey you traveled to get to college using the same structure as the Odyssey.  Begin with the present and describe yout current situation (just as the situation at Odysseus’ house is described at the beginning fo the Odyssey).  Then flashback to the journey you took to get here.  Your final destination is graduation (remember that porch!), but Like Odysseus, you haven’t reached it yet.  What perils have you encountered so far.  Who stood in your way (who was your Poseiden)?  Had you done something to offend him/her the way Odyssues offended him? Who assisted you in your journey (your Athena)?  Do you know whey that person/people assisted you?  Any sirens along the way?  This does not have to be a perfect draft (no first drqaft is ever perfect–including mine).  If you wish to do so, you can revise this draft and turn it into Paper #9.

(1 to 2 pages of handwritten prose.)

Paper #2

Draft due on July 6;  final copy due on July 9
Look at the map of Drew and, either in groups or alone, find your way to the Zuck Arboretum, make notes as you go (pay attention to detail), but don’t worry if you get lost and need to retrace your steps.  Explore the arboretum (make sure you find both ponds and take a look at the plants and animals there).  Now write a narrative of your “Odyssey” (including any time you got lost or were uncertain of your way).  This can be serious or humorous.  Think about the audience you are writing for and your purpose (to amuse, frighten, etc.)

(Typed–first draft can be handwritten.  Double spaced.  No particular page length.)

Paper #3

Draft due on July 6;  final copy due on July 9
Select your best/most interesting answer to the Odyssey 5-8 essay exam, and develop it into a paper.

(Typed.  Double spaced.   2-4 pages long)

Paper #4

Thesis due on July 11;  draft due on July 12;  final copy due on Saturday, July 14
A comparison of  Penelope, Kalypso, Circe, and Nausikaa (all of them).  For this assignment you need to first list the similarities and differences between the four woman.  Study this list carefully and look for interesting or unexpected similarities.  You might decide to compare how each woman responds to a specific thing (Odysseus, for example–although you could be more creative).  You could also classify the women (perhaps looking at who is in control of her own destiny, who is the best partner for Odysseus, or who might be called “good” or “bad”).  You might decide to compare the four women as archetypes or stereotypical women (mother/virgin, whore/adulteress or whatever categories you see). Whatever your focus, you need to develop a thesis that is supported by the material you generated in your prewriting.

(Typed.  Double spaced.   3-5 pages long)

Paper #5

Draft due on July 16;  final copy due on July 17
Write an analysis of the character of either Odysseus or Telemachus. First decide who you’ll write about.  Then consider what you want to say about that person.  What kind of man is he?  How does he make decisions?  What kind of values does he hold? Try to use material from your other classes to help you with this analysis (if you do so, remember to either quote or paraphrase the source material and cite it correctly–ask me if you aren’t sure how to do this). Your analysis must have a controversial thesis (i.e.: one that we could reasonably argue the opposite of), and you must support that thesis using specific examples.

(Typed.  Double spaced.   3-5 pages long)

Paper #6

Draft due on July 18, Final copies due on Saturday, July 21 and Tuesday, July 24
Use anything Greg Sarris says in “The Woman Who Loved a Snake” to help you consider your response to the Odyssey.  You might think about the fact that the Odyssey is a transcription of an oral tale and discuss how this changes it or your reaction to it.  You might consider the fact that there are different “versions” (both different translations and different movies) and compare those versions.  You might think about what Sarris describes as “culture contact” in relation to the Odyssey and write about your cultural contact with the text, or the contact between characters within it.  You could also use the website linked to the syllabus to think about the Odyssey in its cultural context–using Sarris to explain why this is important. Or you might do something else!  Whatever you do, use lots of specific examples from the Odyssey and quote or paraphrase (with correct citation) Sarris’s argument.  This paper also needs a controversial thesis.

(Typed.  Double spaced.   3-5 pages long.)

Paper #7

Due on July 30
The 15 minute Odyssey.  Collaboratively write a version of Homer’s Odyssey that can be performed in 15 minutes.  Make sure you include all of the main events, but reduce them to a skeleton so that we can follow the story but move through it very fast.  As a group you’ll need to decide how to represent each major character, what kind of language to use, how to show when someone is disguised, and what is essential material.  The class will break into small groups that will each work on part of the Odyssey, then we will put the parts together.  You’ll need to decide who will play each part and how the audience will know who each actor is (using no more than one “prop” per character).

(Length--15 minutes, which is about 20 pages of dialogue/stage directions)

Paper #8

Draft due on August 6;  final copy due on August 7
Think about the relationship between education and behavior and write a paper in which you argue for a kind of education that you believe will help create the ideal city/society.  What constitutes an ideal education?  Why?  What is an ideal city/society?  Why? What effect will this model have on society?  (Use your notes on the Republic to help you).  Write out as full a description as possible of your ideal education, providing a rational (justification for the things you include).  Consider what people should read, what they should learn overall, what the curriculum would include, etc. (try to touch on your version of all the aspects that Socrates describes).  You can quote/summarize any of Plato’s arguments if you want to do so, but you don’t have to.  Remember that this paper is a cause and effect paper, so describe the result/goal of each aspect of education you describe. 

(Typed.  Double spaced.   5-10 pages long.) 

Paper #9

Due on August 8
Review papers #1 through #6.  Look at my comments and your revisions of the drafts, and find patterns (what errors are commented on more than once?  What  aspects of your writing are praised? What did you decide to cut or expand?  What did you keep?)  Make a list of each and write a brief analysis of your strengths and weaknesses based on this.  Select one paper to revise again.  Plan how you'll revise it and mark up a copy of the paper to show what you need to do. 

(Make it at least one page longer than the original.)

Paper #10

Due August 7
This is an in-class paper that is a synthesis of one of the issues touched on by all of the texts we have read so far this summer (e.g.: appropriate behavior, justice, education/learning, gender, memory/perception, dealing with different people or ideas, etc.). 

(2-3 pages typed or handwritten–whatever you prefer.)

Final Portfolio

Due August 8 
This will contain all the work you have done for me this summer along with a preface/introduction:
  1. your vocabulary logs; 
  2. your New York Times responses (at least eight); 
  3. your outlines of Odyssey, books 2-5; 
  4. your summary of Odyssey 1-4;
  5. your notes on the Odyssey (books 1-24);
  6. your test on Odyssey 5-8;
  7. your notes for your class presentation of reading from another class;
  8. Socrates’ definition of justice (from July 25);
  9. your notes for Republic 1-5; 
  10. your test on the Republic 1-5;
  11. in-class outline of the argument in Republic 5 and your response (from August 6);
  12. all of your notes, prewriting, and drafts of papers; 
  13. the final papers;
  14. the analysis sheets;
  15. everything you have written for me this summer including anything I’ve forgotten here!
  16. your introduction about the portfolio and what you’ve learned about writing this summer.
Make a pile containing 1-11 and organize the material in the order listed above.  Clip this together or put a sheet of paper on top saying “Notes, etc.”

Next make one pile for each of the 10 papers you’ve written in this class.  At the bottom of each pile, put the first notes/prewriting, on top of that put the first draft and so on, so that the final copy is on top and your assignment analysis sheet is on top of that.  Clip each pile together with a paper clip, or put a piece of paper on top of each saying which paper it is.  NOTE:  You don’t need to print out the full “15 minute Odyssey,” just give me your notes and the part you worked on. 

Finally, put paper #1 on top of the pile of notes, the pile for paper #2 on top of that, and so on.  Your introduction or preface will go on the very top, and the whole pile of work will go into a manilla folder (which you may decorate if you have the time and the inclination).  If you want to make a table of contents and number the pages, please do so.  It is also a very good idea to include an acknowledgments page where you name the people who have helped you this summer and acknowledge their support.

The preface or introduction to the portfolio
 In this one- to two-page essay you should introduce the writing in your portfolio in such a way that I can make sense of what you have learned, what you still need to learn, and generally what I can expect to find in the portfolio.  Think of it like the preface to a book.  You may follow any organizational pattern you like, but you should write the preface in the style of a formal essay (i.e.: with an introduction, paragraphs, and a conclusion), and you should proofread and spell check it carefully.  PLEASE DO NOT ASK ANYONE ELSE TO LOOK OVER OR HELP YOU ON THIS.
 The preface must be entirely your own words in entirely your own style.

Issues to touch on in the preface:
      A general discussion of your strengths and weaknesses as a writer; 
      The extent to which these strengths and weaknesses have changed over the summer;
      A discussion of the piece of writing you feel most proud of;
      A discussion of the piece of writing you'd still like to work on (if there were more time);
      A discussion of your overall ability to develop, refine, and support a thesis;
      A discussion of your overall revision skills;
      A discussion of your general writing skills (grammar, punctuation, college writing conventions...);
      A description of your attitude to writing at the beginning of the program;
      A description of your attitude to writing at this point; 
      A description of the extent to which you feel prepared for the fall;
      A discussion of the extent that skills you learned in your writing class could be applied to your
               other classes (with specific examples--if there are any);
      A description of things you wish the writing class had emphasized more than it did; 
      A description of things that you wish you had spent more time learning.

That’s it!
   You can sleep now . . .

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S. Jamieson.  Drew University.  June 2001