Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Monday, May 27, 2013

Summer Intensives Begin

If I seem suddenly quiescent, it because I've slammed into a wall of prep as my summer intensive courses are beginning this week at Berkeley. I'm teaching the same courses this summer as last, six weeks on rhetoric and patriarchy from Homer to Petronius, then six weeks on interpretation and fetishism from Wilde to Haraway. The classes meet for roughly three hours every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, and each meeting covers the material I would normally teach in a week in the regular term. The intensity level of prep, reading, grading is fairly bonkers, everybody gets a bit zany by the end. But all in all the courses are pedagogically more effective than you might think, there can simply be no shirking since to get the least bit behind is to hopelessly lose control over everything and Berkeley students are pretty dedicated as a rule. Also, in a well designed course texts read and discussed in this kind of proximity and relentless succession inevitably reverberate into one another thematically, conceptually, figurally and a kind of devastating momentum builds up that can yield beautiful transformative insights if you know what you are doing and you build a course that really is making a larger kind of argument that has somewhere it wants to go. It really is a whole lot of work, though, fairly shattering by the each week's end. Here I go!

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