Archive for ‘Announcement’

Satire Colloquium: Gulliver to Colbert in 4 weeks

by   |  12.01.09  |  Announcement

“Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally
discover everybody’s face but their own.”
– Jonathan Swift

Over its long history, satire has been the chosen form of the poet, philosopher, dramatist, and wit, the weapon of polemicists arguing for political, social, and often religious change. Dr. Kyle Dickson is a student of satire in general, the poets and dramatists of Britain’s golden age of satire in particular (Swift, Pope, Gay), and one evening at a restaurant in North Oxford was publicly accused of the gratuitous use of irony. Course “readings” will span the proverbial gamut from Aristophanes to The Onion, with an emphasis on the uses (and abuses) of religious satire since the Reformation. In light of Juvenal’s time-honored claim that “It is difficult not to write satire,” we will conclude by composing original satires of our own.

A few examples from Satire Project

by   |  10.10.09  |  Announcement

Just wanted to round out our semester with recordings of some strong work turned in this semester. They represent a wide spectrum of satire and parody, incisive critiques and playful performances. Thanks to everyone who submitted work and joined in the conversation this semester.

Coffee Addict Manifesto –  Kelsey Williamson

Hamlet in Space –  David McMichael

A Tale of Two Universities –  Sara Morris

The Team –  Erin Halstead

Trying your hand at satire

by   |  09.13.09  |  Announcement

If you’re looking for someone to blame for our final project, it may as well be the ancient Roman satirist Juvenal. He’s the one I quoted in the class blurb who said living in times like ours who would not write satire. Given our discussion of the explosion of dissenting voices and forms on the internet, I’d say today is another such time.Picture 2

Before you get too far into developing your final project, please read the assignment carefully. I’ll keep an eye on this thread, so once you’ve had a chance to read the assignment feel free to post questions or comments.

I look forward to seeing and hearing what you all come up with.

Satire Colloquium Project

Sample Projects from 2007

Tempus Fugit

by   |  09.06.09  |  Announcement

Tempus Fugit. Yes, as Horace would say, time is passing and the final few days between now and our colloquium weekend are wasting quickly away. I hope you’re all well into Gulliver and have had a chance to look over the syllabus.

I bring up the syllabus because I’m afraid several of you are already running behind on weekly preparations for our class this coming weekend. If this sound like you, I’d call you to carpe diem, or to repent, or stand and be counted, or whichever impassioned appeal encourages you to get started on the preparatory assignments that stand between you and successful completion of our class.

Please refer to the course syllabus and schedule to make sure you’re caught up. Remember, objects on the syllabus are closer than they appear.


Welcome Back

by   |  08.23.09  |  Announcement

I hope all of you arrived safely back in Abilene. I think I’m finished with our course site (for now). Come on in and look around. The Syllabus and the Schedule will probably be the best place to begin since they should clarify how the other pieces will fit into our work together.

TEXTBOOK: Probably the most important first step is to find a copy of Gulliver’s Travels. We’ll mainly be reading Book 1 and 4, so if you still have an anthology from Major British Writers, you probably have the book already. Otherwise, the Campus Store has a dozen copies for my ENGL 495, so feel free to pick up one of those. Our colloquium will meet the end of the third week of school, so we’ve got a great deal to do in the next few weeks. Talk to me immediately if you have textbook troubles, and I’ll see if I can find an extra copy.

Sometime this week, come on into the class blog and look around a little. Before we begin Gulliver, I’m asking you to post a short introduction to the Class Introductions discussion thread in the sidebar. You’ll respond to several questions. No one will be marking your responses up with a red pen (we’ll save that for later!), but this will give me a chance to begin to connect names and faces.


*Before you post, I’m asking you to Add Your Own Avatar. This profile photo will appear on class blogs, so please choose a mugshot that helps us (mainly me) connect names with faces. (For information about gravatars, see ACU Blogs.)

I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of “laughing until it hurts,” so this semester perhaps we can make some sense of the curious territory between pleasure and pain, between comedy and critique. Thanks for being a part of the conversation.