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CW R4B - Reading, Composition, and Research

Spring 2021
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: 21852
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 8:00am - 9:00am @ Online
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 (i.e., the practitioners) “do” the discipline. To learn more about the course, and to see sample student research, click here.

Book List:

REQUIRED
Most articles for class will be available online through bCourses, but we'll also use:

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

• Lipson, C.. Doing Honest Work in College: How to Prepare Citations, Avoid Plagiarism and Achieve Real Academic Success, 3rd (ISBN 978-0226430744)

TO BE DETERMINED
In addition to required texts, students will work with books targeting lay audiences. SAMPLE BOOKS students have used in the pass include the following, but we'll discuss which books when, and how in the first week of class, so students should wait until we meet before purchasing anything.

• Cheng, E. How to Bake a π

• Chiang, G.H. Ghosts of Gold Mountain: The Epic Story of the Chinese…

• Doudna, J.A. A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing…

• James, A.. Assholes: A Theory

• McWhorter, J. The Language Hoax

• Reich, R. The Common Good

• Sverdrup-Thygeson, A. Extraordinary Insects: The Fabulous, Indispensable Creatures…

Class Number: 21853
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 9:00am - 10:00am @ Online
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 (i.e., the practitioners) “do” the discipline. To learn more about the course, and to see sample student research, click here.

Book List:

REQUIRED
Most articles for class will be available online through bCourses, but we'll also use:

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

• Lipson, C.. Doing Honest Work in College: How to Prepare Citations, Avoid Plagiarism and Achieve Real Academic Success, 3rd (ISBN 978-0226430744)

TO BE DETERMINED
In addition to required texts, students will work with books targeting lay audiences. SAMPLE BOOKS students have used in the pass include the following, but we'll discuss which books when, and how in the first week of class, so students should wait until we meet before purchasing anything.

Cheng, E. How to Bake a π

• Chiang, G.H. Ghosts of Gold Mountain: The Epic Story of the Chinese…

• Doudna, J.A. A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing…

• James, A.. Assholes: A Theory

• McWhorter, J. The Language Hoax

• Reich, R. The Common Good

• Sverdrup-Thygeson, A. Extraordinary Insects: The Fabulous, Indispensable Creatures…

Class Number: 21854
Meeting time @ place:
- @ Online - Time TBA
Section Theme: Monsters and Modernity
Instructor: Jonathan Lang
Section Description:

Monsters used to represent fear of the unknown: unmapped regions in the medieval period were marked by dragons; imperialists in the 19th century bringing the "light" of civilization into the dark continent of Africa feared cannibals. Given the scientific basis of the modern period, would it not be accurate to say that we no longer believe in monsters, that they survive in the modern period if only so that they can serve as the very sign of an unenlightened, and superstitious past? No. Monsters have not been banished to the regions of superstition; they have not been relegated entirely to the past. Once we get over the fear that they might pop out from under our beds, we run to the cinema to delight in observing their contemporary manifestations: as mad scientists, bestial men and women, re-animated corpses, and cyborgs. In the modern period, monsters remain as figures not simply of fear and fascination but of real use. Monsters persist as an emblem of anxiety about a past that is too rapidly disintegrating so as to compromise the very structures of society; or alternatively as a mode of protest against the modernity of the modern period with its new forms of regulation and social control; or then again as the sign of a compromised future wherein the representation of the monster serves to question the "progress of progress," and direct suspicion onto the modern projects of science, industry, and technology. Two analytical papers; one research paper. Literature and film focus.

Book List:

The Handmaid's Tale (Margaret Atwood), Dracula (Bram Stoker), Craft of Research (Wayne Booth). Film: Alien (Ridley Scott). Video: Dexter season 1

Class Number: 21855
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 2:00pm - 3:00pm @ Online
Section Theme: The High Stakes in Sports Culture
Instructor: Chisako A. Cole
Section Description:

Don’t worry, you don’t necessarily have to be athletic to take this class- you don’t even have to like sports (although you can)! Sports is based on ability and talent, but it can deviate, influenced by various social structures. Key questions guiding the course include: what is the role of sports in politics and activism? How is the culture of sports disneyfied and commercialized? Is sports journalism evolving? How do fans impact the culture? In this course, we’ll explore this divergence in the culture of sports and its relationship with journalism, media, gentrification, body and fandom.

Book List:

Booth, Colomb & Williams (2008). The Craft of Research (4th edition). University of Chicago Press 
Other links to online texts on bCourses (pdf or link)

Class Number: 21856
Meeting time @ place:
- @ Online - Time TBA
Section Theme: Research and the Research University
Instructor: Ben Spanbock
Section Description:

Description: This class teaches students to be rigorous and effective investigators. Taking UC Berkeley as a case study, we will discuss the role that the university and its research has played and continues to play in public life. A survey of campus history will be complemented by close examination of primary sources, and discussions on finding and utilizing primary sources effectively. Tracking campus history to the present moment, we will then map our conversations onto current events for a larger discussion on writing research papers using primary and secondary sources. Some of the issues that we will cover in our readings and discussions will include: 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. Over the course of the semester, students will embark on a process of discovery related to a key issue within their chosen topic, to determine where, how, and why their research holds particular relevance to our world today.

 

Book List:

Available at the Cal Student Store

The Craft of Research, 4th edition (Booth, Wayne C.)

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

 

Available In Class, Online, or Through the Library

Access to various primary sources, secondary sources, databases, and archives

Varied texts (at least one book length text) related to your discovery project

Class Number: 21857
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 1:00pm - 2:00pm @ Online
Section Theme: The Machine Starts: Technology and its (Dis)contents
Instructor: Michael Larkin
Section Description:

Note on class meeting times: The class will meet synchronously on Zoom on TWO of the three days/times listed in the schedule (MWF 1-2 pm), progressing to once a week as the term goes on. It will also be possible to take the course entirely or mostly asynchronously, if necessary. More details to follow as the spring term approaches, but feel free to email (larkinm@berkeley.edu) if you have questions.

 

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. In these fractious times, 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? Where does all of our data go, and how does it get used? 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); Weapons of Math Destruction:  How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy (Cathy O'Neil); The Craft of Research, 4th edition (Booth, et al.); Algorithms of Oppression:  How Search Engines Reinforce Racism (Safiya Noble); Digital course reader (via bCourses)

Class Number: 21858
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 11:00am - 12:30pm @ Online
Section Theme: Perspectives on Immigration in 2020
Instructor: Jordan Ruyle
Section Description:

Immigration is major feature of the American national identity, yet it is also one of the most contentious. Immigration has recently become even more complicated during the current presidential administration. From cancellation of the DREAM Act to detentions and family separations, immigration policy in the current presidential administration has led to a migrant crisis at the border and extreme problems for immigrants already living in the US, situations that are further complicated by the currently unfolding COVID-19 pandemic.

This class will use the current state of immigration as a starting point in our exploration of immigration in a broader context. To widen the scope of our course conversation, we will examine immigration and culture from anthropological, sociological, and historical perspectives. You will read and write about the work of Leo Chavez, UC Irvine anthropologist who focuses on visual representations of Latinx people and how images of immigrants and immigration are constructed, both currently and throughout history. You’ll also read from Gloria Anzaldúa’s work as part of an exploration of the intersection of identity, culture, and borders.

Through your own research, you will be encouraged to explore topics of interest to you. Starting on the first day of class, you will begin work on a research project that will culminate in a paper and presentation at the end of the semester. Along the way you’ll do lots of writing, developing skills and habits necessary for academic work. You’ll also explore writing and research resources available at the university library.
 

Book List:

All titles are available as free digital books to UC Berkeley students in the UC Berkeley library. You can use digital copies for this class.

Booth, Wayne C., et al. The Craft of Research, University of Chicago Press, 2016. ProQuest Ebook Central, https://ebookcentral-proquest-com.libproxy.berkeley.edu/lib/berkeley-ebo....

Harris, Joseph. Rewriting: How To Do Things With Texts. Utah State University Press, 2006. Project MUSE muse.jhu.edu/book/9248

Chavez, Leo. The Latino Threat : Constructing Immigrants, Citizens, and the Nation, Second Edition, Stanford University Press, 2013. ProQuest Ebook Central, https://ebookcentral-proquest-com.libproxy.berkeley.edu/lib/berkeley-ebo...

Chavez, Leo R. Covering Immigration: Popular Images and the Politics of the Nation. Berkeley:  University of California Press,  c2001 2001. http://ark.cdlib.org.libproxy.berkeley.edu/ark:/13030/kt796nc84n/

Class Number: 21859
Meeting time @ place:
- @ Online - Time TBA
Section Theme: Music and Social Movements
Instructor: Kaya Oakes
Section Description:

The connections between music and social movements stretch back hundreds of years. In this section of R4B, we'll look at more contemporary examples: the links between feminism and music, civil rights and music, LGBTQ+ rights and music, and the changing nature of our relationship to music as consumers. We'll learn rhetorical strategies for building written arguments about the relationships between music and social change, and we'll work with the UC Berkeley library to build research skills for your final project.

Although this class is meeting asynchonously, we will find a mutual weekly time that works for a Zoom session for the whole class as well as live office hours and small group meetings throughout the semester. 

 

Book List:

Feminisim is for Everybody, bell hooks

Can't Stop Won't Stop, Jeff Chang

Stay Free: The Story of the Clash (podcast)

The Craft of Research

Class Number: 21860
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 2:00pm - 3:30pm @ Online
Section Theme: Strange Days: Technology and our Complex Identities
Instructor: Ryan Sloan
Section Description:

Who are we? How do our tools filter how we see the world -- and shape what are we becoming? We’ll examine surreal, funny, strange, heartbreaking work that grapples with the complexities of society’s relationship with technology.

We’ll read multimedia longform journalism on our inhumanity toward robots and the desire to revive our dead friends; the history of trolls, memes and tumblr teens; post-apocalyptic humor as theatre of the absurd; satirical short works on consumer trends run amok; darkly hilarious animated television with surprising depth; creative nonfiction, short fiction, graphic novel excerpts, and academic writing that explore the boundaries of the playful, the thoughtful, and the grotesque.

You’ll work with a number of digital platforms, have rich discussions with your peers, develop stronger analytical skills, and conduct research on a sustained project of your own choosing: the complexity of internet shaming / social media / music / memory / mortality / immigration / travel / gender / gentrification / dating / education / environment / conspiracies / [insert your passion here!].  

Book List:

Texts: Nearly all of our reading will be free, smaller, digital excerpts and articles collected by me in the Digital Course Reader on bCourses.

Craft of Research (Booth) -- EAN 9780226239736

 

Digital Course Reader (free, accessible on our class bCourses site)

Films & Video: clips from Get Out, Bojack Horseman, Rick & Morty, Black Mirror, Westworld, Wall-E

Class Number: 21861
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 11:00am - 12:30pm @ Online
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, Naomi Klein, and Phillipe Squarzoni, among others. Students will writing a variety of analytical essays, as well as write their own research project

Book List:

Pages