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CW R4B - Reading, Composition, and Research

Fall 2022
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, an 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 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: 21099
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 9:00am - 10:00am @ Mulford 230
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.

• Abu-Lughod, L.. Do Muslim Women Need Saving

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

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

• Elkins, J.. The Object Stares Back: On the Nature of Seeing

• James, A.. Surfing with Sartre

• Keating, B. Losing the Nobel Prize: A Story of Cosmology, Ambition…

• Muller, R.A.. Physics for Future Presidents: The Science Behind the Headlines

• McWhorter, J. Talking Back, Talking Black…

• Reich, R. Beyond Outrage: What Has Gone Wrong…

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

Class Number: 23470
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 10:00am - 11:00am @ Mulford 230
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:

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

Class Number: 21100
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 11:00am - 12:00pm @ Social Science 118
Section Theme: The Machine Starts: Technology and its (Dis)contents
Instructor: Michael Larkin
Section Description:

Note: Course theme/readings subject to at least some degree of change.
 

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:

(Again, subject to change.) "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: 21101
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 10:00am - 11:00am @ Evans 39
Section Theme: Modern Love, Ancient Brains
Instructor: David Wiese
Section Description:

This polysynchronous, hybrid course (2 in-person meetings per week with supporting online asynchronous work) focuses on the burgeoning field of evolutionary psychology, which argues that humans vary little across time and space, and that our behavior is rooted in the choices of our ancestors. These arguments are compelling but also ripe with controversy. We will analyze these arguments from various perspectives – sociology, economics, politics, computer science, and more – and hopefully become better readers, writers, and researchers as we do.

Here are some questions you will explore in this class: Is beauty truly in the eye of the beholder? Why are we drawn to certain types of food, people, landscapes, and art? Are people really that different from one culture or era to the next? How much free will do we really have? How are recent technological and economic developments impacting impulses that developed over millions of years? Is society to blame for gender differences, or are these differences a natural part of life? 

Book List:

a. Why Beautiful People Have More Daughters: From Dating, Shopping, and Praying to Going to War and Becoming a Billionaire (Alan Miller, Satoshi Kanazawa)

b. Modern Romance (Aziz Ansari, Eric Klinenberg)

c. Course Reader texts (available on bCourses)

Class Number: 21102
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 2:00pm - 3:00pm @ Social Science 118
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:

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

Class Number: 21103
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 2:00pm - 3:00pm @ Evans 47
Section Theme: Perspectives on Immigration in 2022
Instructor: Jordan Ruyle
Section Description:

This class will use the current state of immigration as a starting point in our exploration of immigration in a broader context. We will step back a bit from the current controversies and crises surrounding immigration to look at where the topic of immigration intersects with other topics: race and structural racism, history, culture, politics, and art, to name a few.

Taking a multidisciplinary approach, the course draws from texts and ideas in sociology, anthropology, ethnic studies, media studies, and more. The content will be organized into three units: Race and Immigration, Media and Representation, Story and Ethnography.

The first part of the class is made up of content that I provide in the previously mentioned areas. You’ll read and discuss course texts and complete writing assignments based on them. Then, the course pivots as you, the students, begin to provide more and more of the material to be read, studied, and discussed. This material will be drawn from your own work researching topics of your own choice, work which culminates in your final research project.

Throughout the semester, you’ll engage in activities that help you develop an awareness of academic writing conventions, such as citation and source use. Course activities offer practice in writing to these conventions, but also inspire an interrogation of the norms of academic writing. You’ll practice with stylistic and structural language features that will help you craft writing that says what you want to say how you want to say it. Finally, you’ll come to a greater understanding of how writing is often used as a tool for thought, part of the process of analysis. You’ll practice thinking-through-writing, where writing is less of a final product and more of a space for critical analysis and inquiry.

As a course focused on research, the class provides an introduction to UC Berkeley library resources and practice using these resources for research. As you grow more comfortable with these resources, you’ll expand your definition of what research is, examining your own place in the academic communities at Cal and your potential for participating in academic research.

Book List:

Most titles are available as free digital books to UC Berkeley students in the UC Berkeley library. You can use digital copies for this class, but if you prefer paper copies, I suggest buying The Craft of Research and The Latino Threat since most of those two books will be required reading. You'll read excerpts from the other books.

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....

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...

Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. An Indigenous People's History of the United States. Beacon Press, 2014.  https://ebookcentral-proquest-com.libproxy.berkeley.edu/lib/berkeley-ebo...

Haney-López, Ian. White by Law. [Electronic Resource] : The Legal Construction of Race. Rev. and updated, 10th anniversary ed., New York University Press, 2006. 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

Ngai, Mae M.Impossible Subjects. [Electronic Resource] : Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America - Updated Edition. New paperback edition / with a new forward by the author., Princeton University Press, 2014. https://muse-jhu-edu.libproxy.berkeley.edu/book/64461/

Race-- the Power of an Illusion. Kanopy Streaming, 2014. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=cat04202a&AN=ucb.b23929703&site=eds-live. Link for streaming: https://berkeley-kanopy-com.libproxy.berkeley.edu/video/race-power-illus...

Class Number: 21104
Meeting time @ place:
MWF 10:00am - 11:00am @ Evans 47
Section Theme: TBA
Instructor: Chisako A. Cole
Section Description:
Book List:
Class Number: 21094
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 9:30am - 11:00am @ Social Science 118
Section Theme: What Is Happening Now?
Instructor: Belinda Kremer
Section Description:

We will ask: 1) How might the contemporary arts ask, pursue, and spur questions meaningful to our lived lives? 2) How might contemporary/emerging science do the same? And finally: 3) How might we use both art and science to spur, ask, and pursue meaningful research questions of our own?

Poet Daniel Borzutzky's 2016 National Book Award-winning The Performance of Becoming Human will be our case study and primary source for the 1st question.

For the 2nd, we'll research the inception and evolution of Dr. Pauline Boss' theory of "ambiguous loss." Then, in a collaborative class project, we'll apply the theory, using her 2021 book The Myth of Closure: Ambiguous Loss in a Time of Pandemic and Change to frame and articulate our own ambiguous losses. Our collaboration will result in a public-facing product. We will decide together what we want that to be and do, and in what platform(s) and medium(s) we will best accomplish our goals. 

Pursuing the 3rd, we will attend four live shows in Cal Performance's Fall 2022 season. With your peers, you'll reflect on these live works of art, guided by a question-generating framework, and a series of discussions. The interests generated through this process will develop into potential research questions for your culminating indivdual R4B research project. You'll pursue your question of choice through current research in the humanies, social sciences, and sciences.

Book List:

Borzutzky, Daniel. The Performance of Becoming Human. Brooklyn Arts Press, 2016.

Cal Performances Student Flex Pass ($60)  for 4 Performances. Logistics & purchase of the Flex Pass  will be accomplished in/through class. 

All other course texts will have no cost, being either open-source, otherwise free online, or available to us through our UCB Libraries with no-cost, unlimited access-- e.g., The Craft of Research

Class Number: 21095
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 11:00am - 12:30pm @ Social Science 118
Section Theme: 'For Neighbor and for the Earth'
Instructor: Teri Crisp
Section Description:

How might we work to heal social fissures and restore our damaged planet in this time of possibility? Bill McKibben, one of the first to warn the public about climate change, speaks of "people around the world filled with love for neighbor and for the earth who are resisting, remaking, restoring, renewing, revitalizing." This course will explore the intersection of social justice and earth justice--the grand challenge to create a healthier world for all living things in particular, precious places. We'll consider the work of thoughtful scholars, scientists, activists, and artists, as well as your own research and writing, in a highly collaborative class. This section welcomes multilingual and international students.

Book List:

To be announced.

Class Number: 21096
Meeting time @ place:
TUTH 12:30pm - 2:00pm @ Social Science 118
Section Theme: Music and Social Movements
Instructor: Kaya Oakes
Section Description:

The connections between music and social movements stretch back hundreds, if not thousands 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.

Book List:

Feminism is For Everybody, bell hooks

Can't Stop Won't Stop: A History of the Hip Hop Generation, Jeff Chang

Lost Notes: 1980 (podcast), Hanif Abdurraqib

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