Two organizations associated with the English Department are holding academic conferences this month:
- The Graduate Comics Organization will present the 10th Annual UF Conference on Comics and Graphic Novels on March 15-March 17 in Pugh 210 and the Ustler Atrium. The title of the conference is: “A Comic of Her Own: Women Writing, Reading and Embodying Through Comics.” See link for complete schedule:
- The Marxist Reading Group will present the 15th Annual Conference “Rethinking Work,” on March 21-23 in Smathers (Library East) Room 1A. See the link for the complete schedule.
For up to 25 points extra credit, you must attend one panel or keynote speech one of these two conferences and write a 500-600 word response. This response will be due by Monday, April 1 at 5pm and will be posted to the class blog. You may attend as many panels as you like, but you may only post one response.
Responses should not be merely summaries of the panels, but a thoughtful and well-developed short paper that includes your own analysis. You may write on one of the following prompts (or a combo):
- Discuss one of the papers presented at the panel. What is the main argument of the paper? How did the author organize the paper? What techniques could you use to improve your own papers? What could the author have done better, either in the paper or during their presentation?
- Discuss the environment of the panel you attended. How did the papers on the panel work together? How did the panel interact with the audience? With each other? What was your experience as an audience member? What did you learn from this experience?
- Discuss how one of the papers or a panel at large helped you to reconsider some of the topics we have regularly discussed in class. Did this paper/panel add to your understanding of this topic? What new ideas or points to you hope to use in our future discussions in class.
- Attend one of the keynote addresses. What is the speech about? What are some of the main arguments? Do you agree/disagree with the speaker? What did you learn from this speech?
- If you are an English/Humanities major and are considering going to graduate school, use this as an opportunity to reflect on what that might entail. How would you feel about presenting in this professional setting? Did your interactions with this group of graduate students, faculty or other professionals in the field change your concept of what graduate school would be like? What challenges or opportunities do you see emerging out of this type of work? What topics can you see yourself presenting on in the future?
A few quick notes:
- This is a professional conference. Please conduct yourself accordingly. If I hear from any of my fellow grad students or faculty that students, specifically MY students, were texting, talking, snoozing or otherwise conducting themselves in appropriately, I will cancel the Extra Credit for EVERYONE. Conduct yourself as if you were in class: plan to take notes and turn off your cell phones.
- There will likely be free food at these events.
- Please do not attend a panel if you can not be present for the whole thing. It is extremely rude for you to enter late or leave early: it is distracting to the speakers and disruptive to the audience.
- You may attend any of the panels that you find interesting, even (or especially) if it applies to one of your other classes. However, if you are attending the same panel for two different classes, you must produce original response papers for both classes in order to comply with the UF honor code on plagiarism. I am presenting on one of the MRG panels but you will not get EXTRA extra credit for attending that one 🙂
- These papers will be written at the professional/PhD level. Do not worry if you find yourself confused. Try to follow the argument as best you can. Pay attention to the way the speaker organizes their talk, the things they emphasize and the way they respond to questions. If possible, ask questions!
- If you are interested in going to graduate school, this is an excellent opportunity for you to see up close what graduate research (especially in the humanities) looks like, and what professional conferences entail. I highly encourage those of you in your junior and senior years who might be pursuing higher degrees to attend at least one of the panels.
- This will be the final extra credit offering for the semester.