Prior to class sessions, you should prepare a substantial discussion question (approximately 200-250 words) that you’d like to address in our conversation about the week’s assigned readings. Your discussion question should offer evidence of your familiarity with the primary as well as secondary texts assigned for that week. Good discussion questions tend to orient themselves in big-picture claims while also introducing specific examples or case studies drawn from primary textual evidence. These examples or case studies usually either extend, complicate, or even contradict the larger argument. In other words, the point is not just to illustrate, prove, or apply the big-picture claim but to push it in new directions based on the evidence provided by a literary work. Please include page numbers for any references to or quotes from passages.
Discussion questions should be posted to the course’s Google doc by 5pm on the Wednesday before class; students should avoid asking the same question as another student in the class. Prior to our class meeting, students should familiarize themselves with all the questions that were posted and come prepared to offer tentative answers. You are required to post 7 discussion questions over the course of the whole semester during which we will have 9 class sessions devoted to discussing primary and secondary texts; accordingly, you may skip two weeks of posting discussion questions per your own schedules and workloads.