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CIE: second paper assignment (CIE100.DD FA07)

Here’s the second paper assignment.

CIE100.DD (Rein)
Second paper assignment
First draft due Friday, October 12, 2007 in class

Since the semester began, we have spent a fair amount of time in class talking not just about the texts themselves but also about — for lack of a better word — the process of the class itself. In other words, we’ve talked about the texts, but we’ve also talked about what it’s like to talk about (and read, and think about) the texts. We are lucky enough to have formed a solid community in which genuine dialogue can take place. We have also read several dialogues, namely the Euthyphro and the Gita. We are now six weeks into the semester, with nine weeks to go. Thinking ahead to the rest of the term, here is your assignment. In the form of a four-to-five page paper (aim for 1500 words), write a letter to the rest of the class (including me) in which you describe what lessons we might draw from the dialogues found in the Euthyphro and in the Gita about how the class might run better.

These lessons can be positive (i.e., things we ought to imitate about those dialogues) or negative (things we should avoid). For the sake of balance, do your best to come up with at least one negative and one positive from each text. Be open-minded. Be aware of your preexisting opinions, but don’t be afraid to challenge them, either. (For example, you might ask yourself: if individual participants tried to imitate Socrates’s confrontational style of questioning in some ways, might that push the class towards deeper insights, and why, or why not? Or: if we thought more in terms of concrete, pressing moral dilemmas, like Arjuna, would that make the discussion more relevant? These are just examples, and you don’t have to discuss them; they’re just supposed to give you ideas.)
Organize your paper as a conventional essay — include a thesis statement that lays out your main point in a nutshell and include supporting evidence from the texts and from your observations about the class so far.
Your classmates will read your work.

For Monday, write some notes towards a draft, in the following form. First, write one paragraph each in which you describe what you find fruitful or relevant about the type of dialogue found in the Euthyphro, in the Gita, and in our class. Then, write one paragraph each in which you describe what you find alienating or unproductive about those types of dialogue. (In other words, a total of six short paragraphs.) Be sure not to stop at first impressions, but ask yourself why you have the reactions you do. In other words, don’t just say, “The dialogue in this text is boring,” but explain why you find it boring, being as precise as possible, and what it would take to make it not boring. Try to write quickly, if you can; you’re brainstorming. You’ll share this with the rest of the class.


Just watched the Gilgamesh production

Wow. That was … intense. I know I ought to say more, but I’ll save it for class.

Propaganda images from the Reformation

To see higher-quality versions of the images, use this link to download all four to your computer.

RELS-365: in case you forgot to write down the assignment…

… here it is.
RELS-365 assignment posted Wed., Oct. 3, 2007
And, don’t forget, use “fomes peccati” in conversation twice and be prepared to report on this.