Tuesday, January 29
In class: Stream of consciousness experiment
Blog 1: Respond to an online source that explores a question or idea raised during our first meeting. (Be sure to include a link–or, if it’s video or an image, to embed it in your post.)
Thursday, January 31
Lodge, Thinks… (chapters 1 – 10)
Blog 2: You are another character in the novel, and you’ve discovered Ralph Messenger’s “stream of consciousness” recording. Choose a medium and document your own stream of consciousness in response Ralph’s.
Tuesday, February 5
Lodge, Thinks… (Chaper 11 – end); Welcome to Your Brain, Chapters 1 & 3
Discuss annotated passages
Blog 3: Describe a useful metaphor for consciousness.
Thursday, February 7
Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway (pp. 196 – 252 in The Mrs. Dalloway Reader)
Blog 4: Walking with Clarissa: What does it feel like to be Clarissa in London? Focus on one or more of the five senses.
Due: Annotated passage 1 (literary text, to me and your writing group, via email by midnight)
Tuesday, February 12
Thursday, February 14
Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway (pp. 252 – end in The Mrs. Dalloway Reader)
Blog 5: Reading Virginia Woolf
Tuesday, February 19
Lehrer, “Virginia Woolf: The Emergent Self”; Zunshine, “Theory of Mind and Representations of Fictional Cosnciousness”; Gordon Harvey, “Elements of the Academic Essay” (see Documents).
Due: Annotated passage 2 (critical text, to me and your writing group, posted to your blog by midnight)
Blog 6: Respond to Zunshine or Lehrer (or both). Choose one claim that illuminates the text and one that does not.
Thursday, February 21
McEwan, Saturday (pp. 1 – 100)
Blog 7: Compare McEwan’s prose to Woolf’s.
Tuesday, February 26
McEwan, Saturday (p. 100 – end); Welcome to Your Brain, Chapter 6
Blog 8: Reflect on something interesting you’ve learned about human brains. (Include a link to a relevant source online.)
Thursday, February 28
Sigmund Freud, “Irma Dream” (from The Interpretation of Dreams)
Blog 9: Recount and analyze a dream of your own (or a fictional one) in the style of Freud. You may also want to include a final paragraph where you respond to Freud. Did his method work for you? What are its strengths and limitations?
Tuesday, March 5
Siri Hustvedt, The Shaking Woman (pp. 1 – 125)
Blog 10: Reflect on something you learned from reading Hustvedt’s book.
Thursday, March 7
Siri Hustvedt, The Shaking Woman (pp. 126 – end)
Blog 11: Recount a neurological experience, using Hustvedt’s writing as a model.
Tuesday, March 12
Tougaw, “Brain Memoirs, Neuroscience, and the Self”; Antonio Damasio, The Feeling of What Happens, Chapter 1
Blog 12: Write about an “object” (in Damasio’s sense of the term) that shapes or changes you.
Thursday, March 14
Antonio Damasio, Self Comes to Mind (chapters 1 – 4)
Blog 13: Damasio’s claims: Focus on one you agree with or one you disagree with (or one that confuses you).
Tuesday, March 19
Alva Noë, Out of Our Heads (chapters 1 – 4)
Blog 14: Write a dialogue between Damasio and Noe, about one of the books we’ve read this semester (on any topic they might debate). You might want to make this a discussion of one of the books we’ve read this semester. Where possible, integrate words from their books into the dialogue you write.
Thursday, March 21
David B, Epileptic (pp. 1 – 72)
Writing Groups: Project Proposal Workshop
Blog 15: Consider some ideas for your seminar project. Think about topics that will work well as a traditional essay and that can be adapted to an online format. Do this before class.
Tuesday, March 26
No class—spring break
Thursday, March 28
No class—spring break
Tuesday, April 2
No class—spring break
Thursday, April 4
David B, Epileptic (pp. 72 to end); Welcome to Your Brain, Chapters 10 & 12
Send your project proposal to your writing group. Respond with feedback on your peers’ proposals within 24 hours.
Blog 16: Respond to an image in David B.’s graphic memoir. (If possible, scan and upload the image.)
Tuesday, April 9
Haddon, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (1/2 the group; pp. 1 – 144)
Wray, Lowboy (1/2 the group; pp. 1 – 142)
Blog 17: Project proposal (by midnight)
Evening: Siri Hustvedt reading (6:30 – 8-30 pm)
Thursday, April 11
Haddon, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (1/2 the group; pp. 144 – end)
Wray, Lowboy (1/2 the group; pp. 143 – end)
Discuss annotated bibliography
Blog 18: How does the author use narration to represent the distinctive point of view of a character with Asberger Syndrome (Haddon) or schizophrenia (Wray)?
Tuesday, April 16
Welcome to Your Brain, Chapters 16 & 19; Vermeule, “The Fictional Among Us” & “The Cognitive Dimension” (from Why Do We Care about Literary Characters?)
Writing groups: Annotated bibliography workshop
Blog 19: Analysis a passage (critical source)
Thursday, April 18
Blog 20: What is character? What is personality?
Tuesday, April 23
Marco Roth, “Rise of the Neuronovel”; New York Times Debate: “Neuro Lit Crit”
Blog 21: Annotated bibliography
Thursday, April 25
Hustvedt, Sorrows of an American (pp. 1 – 81)
Blog 22: Write a letter to the editors of N+1 or The New York Times, in response to one of their articles on the relationship between literature and neuroscience, using texts from your seminar project as evidence.
Sunday, April 28
Due: Drafts of seminar essays (to me and to your writing group, by noon)
Tuesday, April 30
Writing groups: Draft workshop (using Harvey’s “Elements” as a guide)
Blog 23: Reflect on your plans for revision, based on feedback you received on your draft.
Thursday, May 2
Hustvedt, Sorrows of an American (pp. 82 – end)
Blog 24: Compare the role of the brain in Hustvedt’s novel to its role in another text (possibly one you’re using in your seminar project).
Monday, May 6
Due: Seminar Essays (by midnight)
Tuesday, May 7
Workshop: Setting up and structuring your web page.
Blog 25: Reflect on the strengths and weaknesses seminar essay and your thoughts about adapting it for our web project.
Thursday, May 9
Bauby, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (1-56); Parker, “Reading Minds”
Seminar Essays returned
Blog 26: Reflect on the feedback you’ve received on your final project and your plans for adapting it for our website.
Tuesday, May 14
Bauby, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (57 to end); Keen, “A Theory of Narrative Empathy”
Blog 27: Draft of the introduction page for your web project.
Thursday, May 16
Writing groups: Adaptation workshop; Due: A draft of your web project that includes your introductory page, the sub-pages you plan to include, and as many multimedia elements as you can include at this stage.
Blog 28: Reflect on the semester as a whole–what we’ve done, what you’ve learned, what you still want to know, what you enjoyed most, what you enjoyed least, texts that stand out, suggestions for me next time I teach the course, etc.
Friday, May 24
Final projects due (by midnight)