Camus, The Plague (Vintage)
Defoe, A Journal of the Plague Year (Norton Critical Edition)
Kushner, Angels in America (TCG)
Ma, Severance (Picador)**
Mpe, Welcome to Our Hillbrow (Ohio UP)
Yan, Dream of Ding Village (Grove)*

All readings are posted on or linked from the Textbooks tab on Brightspace

*Distributed separately in an electronic edition via VitalSource
**Available in print via the Bookstore and in PDF on Brightspace under Content > PDF resources


M Aug. 30: Introductions and The Big Question: Are we too connected?

W Sept. 1: Harrison, Contagion: How Commerce Has Spread Disease, ch. 1 {ebook central}; Enriquez, Cabal, and Centeno, “Latin America’s Covid-19 Nightmare”

Prepare: 1) the big point in each; 2) the big picture for each; 3) the most interesting or problematic idea you encountered; 4) how you think the two relate

M Sept. 6: Sophocles, King Oidipous (from Three Theban Plays) {pdf}

W Sept. 8: Sophocles, King Oidipous (cont.); Thucydides, “The Plague of Athens” from The History of the Peloponnesian War, Book II,Ch. VII  

M Sept. 13: Stearns, “New Directions in the Study of Religious Responses to the Black Death”; summary exercise due (Sophocles & Stearns)

W Sept. 15: Ma, Severance, through ch. 3

M Sept. 20: Ma, Severance, ch. 4 to end

W Sept. 22: Watch: Matthew Jackson talk on The Human Network; Christakis, “How Social Networks Predict Epidemics,” ted talk 

Prepare: 1) the big point in each; 2) the big picture for each; 3) the most interesting or problematic idea you encountered; 4) how you think the two relate.

Optional: Jackson, The Human Network, ch. 3 {pdf}; Christakis and Fowler, “Social Network Sensors for Early Detection of Contagious Outbreaks” 

M Sept. 27: Boccaccio, Decameron, frame story excerpt {pdf}; summary exercise due

W Sept. 29: Defoe, A Journal of the Plague Year, to p. 116 (to “I say no more of that.”)

M Oct. 4: Defoe, A Journal of the Plague Year, pp. 116-161; 334 to end; paraphrase exercise due

W Oct. 6: Puskhin, A Feast During the Plague {pdf}; paraphrase/translation exercise due 

Optional: intro, esp. pp. 24-32, on translation choices


optional reading/viewing:

Watch: Steven Johnson on The Ghost Map; then read Johnson, Ghost Map, “Conclusion: The Ghost Map,” 191-228 {pdf}; capture exercise due

Jungck, “Incorporating Quantitative Reasoning in Common Core Courses: Mathematics for The Ghost Map” 

W Oct. 13: Kaashif Hajee, “The Pandemic Radically Altered My Relationship with India. I Don’t Know if I Can Ever Go Back

F Oct. 15: first longer essay due via email by midnight

M Oct. 18: NO CLASS 

W Oct. 20: NO CLASS

M Oct. 25: Ibsen, Ghosts {pdf}

W Oct. 27: Ibsen, Ghosts (cont.); explication exercise due





M Nov. 1: Porter,
Pale Horse, Pale Rider {pdf}; Waterman, “Plague Time (Again); explication exercise due

W Nov. 3: Camus, The Plague, Part One (to p. 64)

M Nov. 8: Camus, The Plague, Parts Two & Three (to p. 186)

W Nov. 10: Camus, The Plague, to the end; explication exercise due 

M Nov. 15: Yan, Dream of Ding Village, through Volume 4

W Nov. 17: Yan, Dream of Ding Village, Volume 5 to end; explication assignment due 

M Nov. 22: Mpe, Welcome to Our Hillbrow (through p. 42, “Notes from Heaven”) 

W Nov. 24: Mpe, Welcome to Our Hillbrow, to the end; explication assignment due

U Nov. 28, LEGISLATIVE DAY (Weds schedule): Kushner, Angels in America: Millennium Approaches; final paper proposals due

W Dec. 1: NO CLASS (National Day)

M Dec. 6: Kushner, Angels in America: Perestroika; explication assignment due

W Dec. 8: Kushner, Angels in America (cont.)

M Dec. 13: Jill Lepore, “What Our Contagion Fables Are Really About”; Lepore, “How Do Plague Stories End?

R Dec. 16: final essays/projects due, by email, before midnight

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