ENGL 1007: Honors First-Year Writing

Beginning in Fall 2020, ENGL 1007 will be the course number for all first-year writing courses at UConn Storrs.

Honors ENGL 1007 recognizes that Honors students are often expected to write more and differently than other UConn students. There are additional opportunities for connection to your own major(s) and greater emphasis on the roles of inquiry and discovery in the humanities. Finally, the Honors sections will culminate with a public celebration of student work.

For Fall 2020, there will be two themed sections of Honors ENGL 1007. They share a single studio section (instructor: Beth Reinwald).

ENGL 1007-015: Music and Identity

Instructor: Darby Lacey

Music is all around us and shapes our connections to places, films, experiences, and even ourselves. For example, music might help us connect to our cultures or explore our emotions or make friends by bonding over shared musical favorites. In this course, we will carefully consider our own various interactions with music and the impact those encounters have on how we perceive ourselves: how certain music makes us feel, how we interact with or use music, even how music might help us to construct our own personal identities.

As we consider our own reactions to music, we will also think about the convergences and divergences in rhetorical choices that are made both when artists compose music, and when we compose our own writing across different mediums. Just as composers, musicians, and djs make countless choices to make a song perfect for the moment, so too do writers when they create their own compositions. As we write together this semester, we will explore the key inquiry, “How does music specifically and writing in general compose our individual and collective identities?”

Our course will also embrace multimodality in music and our own writing. Music brings together sound, lyrics, and even images and video for maximum impact. We will similarly investigate the possibilities of different mediums and modes for our own composing as we explore our course inquiry. The contributions you make in this course will take the form of a personal reflective essay, an annotated playlist, an annotated bibliography, a critical introduction, and a visual album cover. We will explore a variety of composing technologies together, and no previous experience of writing across technology is required.

ENGL 1007-016: Documentary Film and the Composition of “Truth”

Instructor: Mollie Kervick

In a media landscape in which the line between fact and fiction is increasingly blurry, how does documentary media construct our perception of truth? This course asks you to consider the rhetorical moves that a variety of documentary texts make in order to craft an idea of “truth.” As we consume different kinds of documentary daily, it is vital to consider whether documentary media has more to do with “truth” or the ways we construct and consume stories about the “truth.” Furthermore, to what degree has the indecipherability of differences between fiction and non-fiction stories in our current media landscape exacerbated ideological divisions that cause us to interpret the same realities in dramatically different ways? In this class, we will use the art form of documentary film and other documentary media (podcasts/social media/news articles) to explore questions about the representation of truth and reality in art, media, and narrative form more generally. Studying a mix of classic and recent documentary texts, often in comparison with theoretical meditations on truth, we’ll celebrate the complexities of documentary media and delve deeply into the philosophical and aesthetic questions it inspires.

The course assignments include:
1) A Documentary Review (YouTube video)
2) Mini Discovery Documentary
3) Documentary Treatment
4) Collaborative Documentary Composition