John  Tiedemann   writ  1633  (section  68)   Blog:     Email:  John.Tiedemann@du.

edu   Office  hours:  W:  12–3  and  R:  2–4   (email  for  an  appointment).)  

• writ   1 633:   H uman   R ights   /   H umans   W rite  

Historian Lynn Hunt argues that that the practice of literacy — i.e., of composing and interpreting written, visual, or aural texts — is not only uniquely human; it is how we learn to be human. In this class, we will examine literacy from a variety of angles — as expressed in art, as a local social practice, and as a global political phenomenon — both to consider how reading, writing, and viewing define our common humanity and to become more accomplished readers, writers, and researchers ourselves. Much of our time will be spent discussing readings and viewings together as a class, but the majority of our time will be devoted to four writing projects: • • Project 1: Digital Humanism: For this project, you’ll test Lynn Hunt’s thesis that literacy teaches us how to be human by examining that pedagogy at work in a contemporary digital artifact. Project 2: Literacy History: This project asks you to make an argument about the role that literacy has played in the long struggle for human rights by conducting historical research into the development of literacy in America. Project 3: Literacy Ethnography: For this project, you’ll consider the significance of contemporary efforts to promote literacy and human rights by conducting an ethnographic study of a local literacy organization. Project 4: Literacy Reflection: This project asks you to consolidate what you have learned this term about writing, reading, and research by reflecting upon your own work.

The following required texts are available in the University Book Store: • • Inventing Human Rights: A History, by Lynn Hunt Literacy: An Introduction to the Ecology of Written Language, by David Barton

Copies of (or links to) all other readings and viewings will be posted on Blackboard or on our course blog: Your own texts are also a central element of this class — so please bring your laptop to every class meeting.

• Goals WRIT 1633 is a writing course for advanced first-year students, emphasizing rhetorical strategies for different academic and civic audiences and purposes; critical reading and analysis; and research. By the end, students are expected to demonstrate, through their writing, practical knowledge of multiple academic research traditions, the rhetorical/conventional differences among them, and the rhetorical differences between writing for academic audiences and writing for popular audiences. Students are also expected to demonstrate proficiency in finding, evaluating, synthesizing, critiquing, and documenting published sources appropriate to given rhetorical situations. Students will receive sustained practice in writing, with systematic instructor feedback, resulting in at least four finished and polished papers, totaling some 20-25 pages by quarter’s end. • Class-time Thinking and composing well take practice, practice, and more practice. So, as a general rule, we’ll spend half of our time discussing readings and viewings and the other half composing works of our own. The composing may involve responding to a prompt, completing an exercise, drafting or revising, or helping each other to brainstorm or revise in small groups. You can also expect to spend an hour or so each day working at home, and more than that when you’re working on a graded project. Finally, because a quality composition results from many revisions, you will revise each of your projects severally, with guidance from me and your classmates. • Conferences I’m available for conferences in the dining area in Nagel Hall between 12 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Wednesdays and between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Thursdays. It’s to your advantage to make an appointment to talk with me about your work; serious students are serious about seeking out guidance. To make an appointment, please send me an email l( etting me know when you’re free during office hours, and I’ll find a time for us to meet.

• Engagement I expect you all to be active, engaged learners and thoughtful, helpful collaborators, committed to the material, your writing, and your peers’ learning. Your level of engagement is made manifest in a number of ways, including participation in face-to-face class meetings, in online discussions, in peer review feedback, and in your efforts to improve not only your own learning experience but the learning experience of the entire class. I will assess your engagement as follows: Ø “Superior” engagement means that the student is always prepared, often adding additional insights to online discussion and providing extensive feedback to writing. S/he demonstrates active learning via consistently perceptive and energetic engagement with the material, his or her peers, and me. Ø “Average” engagement means that the student generally seems prepared. Generally, his or her participation in online discussion and feedback on writing seem to encourage and support others in the class. The student’s presence is productive Ø “Weak” engagement means that the student’s participation is listless, lackluster, or only intermittent. • Attendance Because interaction with others is a vital part of learning, I expect you to attend every class meeting, scheduled conference, and online activity. You are allowed two absences without penalty; for each absence after the second one, your final grade will drop by one third of a letter (e.g., from an A to an A–, from an A– to a B+, etc.) Should you miss four class meetings, I will suggest that you consider dropping the course and re-enrolling in a quarter during which you can devote the necessary effort. If I determine that excessive absences have prevented you from meeting the goals of the course, you may fail. If you miss a class, you are personally responsible for learning about any missed material or assignments, either from classmates or from our blog. I make no distinction between excused and unexcused absences, so save yours for illness or emergency.

Civility and Tolerance

The Writing Program affirms DU’s Code of Student Conduct (, which in part “expects students to recognize the strength of personal differences while respecting institutional values.” Because writing courses rely heavily on interactions between all members of the class, students and faculty must act in a manner respectful of different positions and perspectives. A student who behaves in an uncivil or intolerant manner will be asked to stop and/or formally reprimanded and/or subject to action by the Office of Citizenship and Community Standards. Becoming educated requires encountering new ideas and information, some of which may conflict with an individual’s existing knowledge or perspectives. I expect students to engage such materials thoughtfully, in ways that reflect the values and mission of the University of Denver. • Late Work Assignments are due when they are due. I will accept late work only if you have cleared the lateness with me in advance, and then only under the most extenuating circumstances. An assignment that is turned in late without advance clearance will be graded down a third of a letter grade (e.g., from an A to an A–, from an A– to a B+) for each day it’s late. • Plagiarism The Writing Program follows the Council of Writing Program Administrators policy “Defining and Avoiding Plagiarism,” which states, “In an instructional setting, plagiarism occurs when a writer deliberately uses someone else’s language, ideas, or other original (not common-knowledge) material without acknowledging its source” ( DU’s Honor Code also maintains that all members of the University must responsibly use the work of others. Students who have plagiarized a project will receive an F on that project, and the instructor will inform the Director of Writing and the Office of Community and Citizenship Standards, which may take further action. Any documented acts of plagiarism after the first may be subject to more severe actions. • Accommodations for Students with Disabilities The Writing Program will provide reasonable accommodations to every student who has a disability that has been documented by The University of Denver Disability Services Program ( or 303.871.2455).

For each of your compositions, you will receive a provisional grade on the draft preceding the final draft, along with suggestions for revision from me. That provisional grade will rise, fall, or stay the same depending upon how effectively you revise as you complete your final draft. All final drafts of all essays is due to me via Google Docs by noon on Thursday, June 7. assignment project 1 project 2 project 3 project 4 engagement relevant dates First draft: 4/10; revised draft: 4/12; final draft: 6/7 First draft: 4/26; revised draft: 5/1; final draft: 6/7 First draft: 5/22; revised draft: 5/24; final draft: 6/7 First draft: 5/29; final draft 6/7 — % of final grade 25% 25% 25% 15% 10%

T March 27 R March 29 T April 3 R April 5 T April 10 R April 12 T April 17 R April 19 T April 24 R April 26 T May 1 R May 3 T May 8 R May 10 T May 15 R May 17 F May 18 T May 22 R May 24 T May 29 R May 31 Introduction Lynn Hunt, Inventing Human Rights, Introduction and ch. 1 Lynn Hunt, Inventing Human Rights, chapters 2 and 3 Lynn Hunt, Inventing Human Rights, chapters 4 and 5 Project 1 workshop Introduction to the American Literacy History • Revised draft of Project 1 due on Google Docs Deborah Brandt, “Sponsors of Literacy;” selctions from Harriet Jacobs Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. Selections from the Library of Congress Born in Slavery collection. Documents from the Freedom Schools. Project 2 workshop Introduction to contemporary literacy activism • Revised draft of Project 2 due on Google Docs Selections from Barton, Literacy. Selections from Barton, Literacy. Selections from Barton, Literacy. Selections from Barton, Literacy. Class cancelled for Friday’s Social Justice Colloquium. Social Justice Colloquium. Project 3 workshop Introducing Project 4 • Revised draft of Project 3 due on Google Docs Project 4 workshop Revisions

Final drafts of all projects due on Google Docs by noon, Thurs., June 7.

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