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CW R4B - Reading, Composition, and Research

Spring 2018
Description 

This writing seminar satisfies the second half (Part B) of the Reading & Composition Requirement. It offers students structured, sustained, and highly articulated practice in the recursive processes entailed in reading and composing, as well as critical analysis. The seminar affords students guided practice through the stages involved in creating a research paper. Students read five thematically related book-length texts, or the equivalent, drawn from a range of genres, in addition to various non-print sources. In response to these materials, students craft several short pieces leading up to two longer essays—works of exposition and/or argumentation. Students also draft a research paper, developing a research question, gathering, evaluating, and synthesizing information from texts and other sources. Elements of the research process, such as proposals, annotated bibliographies, abstracts, "works cited" lists, and the like, are submitted, along with the final report, in a research portfolio. Students write a minimum of 32 pages of expository prose during the semester.

Note: Specialized sections are available for multilingual student writers.  These sections are marked (MSW) below.

Available in 
Fall, Summer, and Spring
Prerequisites 
Satisfaction of the UC Entry Level Writing Requirement and the first half (Part A) of the Reading & Composition Requirement
Units and Format 
4 units – Three hours of seminar/discussion per week
Grading Option 
Must be taken for a letter grade for R&C credit
Fulfills 
Reading & Composition: 2nd half (Part B)

Section

Theme

Time

Instructor

Class Number: 23239
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 10:00am - 11:00am @ 122 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: Our World Today: Global Issues, Local Contexts
Instructor: Ben Spanbock
Section Description:

With a focus on current events at both global and local levels, this class teaches students how to be rigorous and effective investigators. The class begins with readings and discussions concerning truth, lies, and bias in today’s oversaturated media landscape. We will consider how and where we find our information, what types of information and what sources of information we find valuable, and what we do with the information we have access to. As our attention turns to sound research practices and engaging with primary sources, we will then map these conversations onto current events at local levels, from advances in academic programs across UC Berkeley campus to things happening around the Bay Area, while looking for broader connections through deep research into local historical contexts. Over the course of the semester, students will also embark on a process of discovery related to a key issue or topic of their choice, and determine where, how, and why their discovery holds particular relevance to our world today. This process will culminate in a portfolio of research materials including an annotated bibliography, research paper, and research presentation.

 

Book List:

Course Reader (available online)

The Craft of Research, 3rd edition (Booth, Wayne C.)

Weaponized Lies: How to Think Critically in the Post-Truth Era (Levitan, Daniel J.)

Class Number: 23420
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 11:00am - 12:00pm @ 122 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: Success Across the Curriculum: How Practitioners "Do" Their Discipline
Instructor: Caroline M. Cole
Section Description:

Meeting the expectations of faculty members trained in different disciplines can be daunting for students who are unaware of or unfamiliar with the range of values, assumptions, and protocols represented at the university. Nevertheless, knowing how to approach, engage with, and emulate context-specific discourse conventions can mean the difference between success and failure at the university, and beyond.

This section of College Writing R4B explores what it means to read, write, and think in disciplines across campus so we can better understand how participants in a field—that is, the practitioners—“do” the discipline.

Book List:

Required

Most of the materials for class discussion is in a course reader (to be available at a local copy shop the first week of class), but we will also use:

• Locke, L.F.. Proposals That Work: A Guide for Planning Dissertations and Grant Proposals, 5th or 6th edition (if 5th edition, ISBN-10: 1412924235; if 6th edition, ISBN-10: 1452216851)

• Lipson, C.. Doing Honest Work in College: How to Prepare Citations, Avoid Plagiarism and Achieve Real Academic Success, 2nd Edition (ISBN 978-0226484778)

To Be Determined
In addition to the required texts, students will work with several books, to varying degrees. We'll discuss when and how the following materials will come into play, so students should wait until after our first class meeting before purchasing any of these items.

• Abu-Lughod, L.. Do Muslim Women Need Saving? (ISBN-10: 0674088263)

• Doudna, J. A.. A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing and the Unthinkable Power to Control Evolution (ISBN-10: 0544716949)

• Elkins, J.. The Object Stares Back: On the Nature of Seeing (ISBN-10: 0156004976)

• James, A.. Assholes: A Theory (ISBN-10: 0804171351)

• Muller, R.A.. Physics for Future Presidents: The Science Behind the Headlines, excerpts (ISBN-10: 0393337111)

• Reich, R.B.. Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few (ISBN-10: 0345806220)

Class Number: 23241
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 12:00pm - 1:00pm @ 121 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: Race, Gender, and Sexuality in African American Literature
Instructor: Aparajita Nanda
Section Description:

In this course we will study literature written by African American authors. The focus of this course will primarily be on developing your critical thinking, reading and writing skills.  Basic rhetorical tools such as description, analysis, explanation, narration, speculation and argument will be used to share your experiences, information and views with others. The emphasis will be on provocative theses, strategies of argument and competent analysis of evidence. It will also introduce you to research techniques that would involve evaluation and synthesis of primary and secondary source material into your argument. 

Book List:

Author: Barak Obama, Title: Dreams from my Father, ISBN: 1400082773

Author: Toni Morrison, Title: Beloved, ISBN: 1400033411

Author: Zora Neale Hurston, Title: Their Eyes Were Watching God, ISBN : 0-06-083867-1

Class Number: 23242
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 1:00pm - 2:00pm @ 237 Cory Hall
Section Theme: Stories of Sustainability
Instructor: Kim Freeman
Section Description:

Stories of sustainability, be they about climate change, peak oil, clean water, or population growth, are all around us. Not only are they a common occurrence on newspaper front pages and a popular theme in social media like Twitter, but it is also an issue that affects an array of subcultures, from nations and neighborhoods to academic disciplines and the arts. One of the key issues is whether or not various societies will be able to maintain their current ways of living. The aim of this course is not to prove or disprove any particular aspect of sustainability. Rather the theme of this course focuses on how various cultures tell stories about sustainability. We’ll read and watch an array of media, from popular forms, such as Pinterest posts, films, and, as well novels, and newspapers. We’ll also look at some academic forms, such as research articles and reviews, from a variety of disciplines, such as biology, international relations, economics, as well as fiction and art. Authors likely to be included are Elizabeth Kolbert, Alan Weisman, and Naomi Klein and, among others. Students will writing a variety of analytical essays, as well as write their own research project.

Book List:

Phillipe Squarzoni Climate Changed

Elizabeth Kolbert The Sixth Extinction

Class Number: 23243
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 2:00pm - 3:00pm @ 122 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: Modern Love, Ancient Brains
Instructor: David Wiese
Section Description:

Evolutionary psychology reveals that most of us approach our quest for love with the mindset of a prehistoric cave dweller. And yet, while our base desires have not changed over the millennia, the manner in which we go about mating and dating has. In this course, you will explore the impact of economic and technological development on sexual impulses that evolved over millions of years. You will answer questions such as: How and why have conceptions of an ideal mate changed over time – and how have they not? How do gender interactions in today’s digital gold rush relate to those of the 1849 Gold Rush? How are smart phone apps and social media transforming romantic relationships? As you explore these questions, you will develop skills and strategies for effective reading, writing and research at Berkeley.

Book List:
Class Number: 23244
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 3:00pm - 4:00pm @ 122 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: TBA
Instructor: Jordan Ruyle
Section Description:
Book List:
Class Number: 23245
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 9:30am - 11:00am @ 237 Cory Hall
Section Theme: The Machine Starts: Technology and its (Dis)contents
Instructor: Michael Larkin
Section Description:

Many of us spend hours upon hours every day at our computers and smart phones connecting to the world and to each other through the rapidly proliferating "apps" of technology, from the "old school" Web 1.0 of email to the ever-evolving world of social networking, e-commerce, and data collection. What does the increased use of these tools mean for the ways we communicate with one another, the ways we read and write and learn, the ways we define what it means to be an individual, what it means to be human? And who has power in these spaces? In this course, you will engage with texts that consider these and other related questions; you will work on reading and writing skills by writing a series of essays about those texts (and those questions); and you'll learn the rudiments of academic research as you craft a research project centered on a subject of your own choosing that fits within our course theme. And who knows—maybe we'll answer some of those questions too.

Book List:

"The Machine Stops" (E.M. Forster); Who Owns the Future? (Jaron Lanier); Deep Lab book and video talks (deeplab.net); The Craft of Research, 4th edition (Booth, et al.); Course Reader, including works by Safiya Noble, author of Algorithms of Oppression:  How Search Engines Reinforce Racism

Class Number: 23246
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 11:00am - 12:30pm @ 121 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: Music and Social Movements
Instructor: Kaya Oakes
Section Description:

From the early days of the labor movement to feminism to the more recent examples of Black Lives Matter and the ongoing struggle for LGBTQ equality, from to Tiannamen Square to the Arab Spring, movements for social change in America and abroad have always had a soundtrack. In this section of R4B, we will examine three different movements where music and social change intersected, and use them to help generate your essays, which will range from persuasive and analytical to research-based. All essays will be process-based and over the course of the semester, you will learn your way around Berkeley's libraries, from navigating databases to using books and primary sources. 

Book List:

Rebecca Solnit, Men Explain Things to Me

Jeff Chang, Can't Stop Won't Stop

John Seabrook, The Sound Machine

The Craft of Research

Class Number: 23247
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 9:30am - 11:00am @ 121 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: Music and Social Movements
Instructor: Kaya Oakes
Section Description:

From the early days of the labor movement to feminism to the more recent examples of Black Lives Matter and the ongoing struggle for LGBTQ equality, from to Tiannamen Square to the Arab Spring, movements for social change in America and abroad have always had a soundtrack. In this section of R4B, we will examine three different movements where music and social change intersected, and use them to help generate your essays, which will range from persuasive and analytical to research-based. All essays will be process-based and over the course of the semester, you will learn your way around Berkeley's libraries, from navigating databases to using books and primary sources. 

Book List:

Rebecca Solnit: Men Explain Things to Me

Jeff Chang: Can't Stop Won't Stop

John Seabrook: The Sound Machine

The Craft of Research

Class Number: 23248
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 12:30pm - 2:00pm @ 122 Latimer Hall
Section Theme: The Machine Starts: Technology and its (Dis)contents
Instructor: Michael Larkin
Section Description:

Many of us spend hours upon hours every day at our computers and smart phones connecting to the world and to each other through the rapidly proliferating "apps" of technology, from the "old school" Web 1.0 of email to the ever-evolving world of social networking, e-commerce, and data collection. What does the increased use of these tools mean for the ways we communicate with one another, the ways we read and write and learn, the ways we define what it means to be an individual, what it means to be human? And who has power in these spaces? In this course, you will engage with texts that consider these and other related questions; you will work on reading and writing skills by writing a series of essays about those texts (and those questions); and you'll learn the rudiments of academic research as you craft a research project centered on a subject of your own choosing that fits within our course theme. And who knows—maybe we'll answer some of those questions too.

Book List:

"The Machine Stops" (E.M. Forster); Who Owns the Future? (Jaron Lanier); Deep Lab book and video talks (deeplab.net); The Craft of Research, 4th edition (Booth, et al.); Course Reader, including works by Safiya Noble, author of Algorithms of Oppression:  How Search Engines Reinforce Racism

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