Satire Colloquium Project


Satire Instructions

In the next two weeks, write or produce a satiric “text” that represents your mature definition of effective satire. As we have seen satire has invaded many artistic forms, and you are free to choose to write a story, poem, or essay or produce a video, song, or audio interview or recording. Whatever your chosen medium, your satiric “text” should reflect a sophisticated awareness of audience, speaker, subject, and situation as well as a controlled use of irony, exaggeration, distortion, parody, or wit, that unquantifiable quantum that separates genius from banality.COMING_ATTRACTIONS

Satires should be posted to the class blog by September 28th at 5pm. Your satire should represent the equivalent of work for a 5-7 page research essay and should be accompanied by a 2-3 page, double-spaced reflection on the process from inspiration to final editing. Your reflective essay should consider how specifically you would classify your product using the literary lexicon we’ve been honing, and then what you would identify as your influences or ties to the broader tradition of satire from Swift to Colbert.

Finally, since the last time we completed this project we’ve opened the Digital Media Center. Most afternoons you can find staff (who happen to be classmates) to help you record or edit media. Please talk to me or one of them if you have questions about packaging your final product for sharing.

Project Suggestions

While your final projects may look very different, each should follow these basic guidelines:

  • Though each project will look somewhat different and be evaluated under slightly different rubrics, every student will have the exact same due date. Extensions cannot be granted, and projects turned in after the due date will be lowered one letter grade for every calendar day they are late.
  • College writing, even if it’s “creative,” should be error free and reveal your knowledge of standard English usage and mechanics (fragments, comma splices, fused sentences, etc). Like spelling errors, these kinds of oversights reveal a degree of hurry or unconcern that reflects poorly on the writer, so leave time to proofread or edit carefully.
  • Just as in other research papers, you will need to cite the source or origin of all materials you include in your paper. This may mean including parenthetical references to page numbers when quoting or URLs for text or media found on the Web. Where possible, please follow MLA Style for all citations <>.


Every student project will be evaluated based on a variety of criteria. The one element each of your assignments will share is the need for your final product to demonstrate your learning and mastery of course material. For the purposes of the assignment “demonstrating” learning will include connecting your project to one or more of the course goals or objectives. As the syllabus indicates, this course seeks to help students:Picture 2

  • Develop an appreciation for key authors, works, and themes of British satire from the eighteenth century.
  • Identify and analyze imaginative and argumentative uses of irony, parody, and wit in satiric texts.
  • Evaluate recent efforts in satire in a wide range of media in respect to the comparative sophistication and success of their efforts.

Other main elements of your assessment include the following areas.

Idea – significance and originality of concept represents creativity of approach and thinking;

Connection – satire encourages audience to find connections with readings or main ideas this semester, revealing insights into reading satire;

Investment – project reveals suitable level of effort and investment for a major colloquium assignment;

Completion – final project develops an original idea through appropriately chosen structures, using effective, polished communication.


These four main criteria will be evaluated according to the following rubric. Points reflect 100 possible points for the completed Project:

Objectives            25 points

Idea                        15 points

Connection            30 points

Investment            15 points

Completion             15 points

Submitting Your Colloquium Project

When you have completed this assignment, submit your satire and reflection essay to the course blog as an email. You will send an email to the blog email address <>, with your satire title as the email title and a one-paragraph introduction to your project. Then add your Satire project and your Reflection essay as attachments to the email. Reflective essays can also be emailed directly to me by the deadline if you choose <>.

*File Formats: Essays or creative writing projects may be turned in as a Microsoft Word or PDF attachments. All media files should be iTunes compatible, so if iTunes can’t play your project let’s talk.

Finally, check back to the blog 15 minutes after submitting your project to see if it posted successfully. Please ensure that all files are complete and accessible once posted by checking links.