Mapping and Annotating in Literature and Keystone Courses

Name: Edward Shannon

Field: Literature

Courses and Semesters Taught: Survey American Literature: Pre-Columbian to Romantic Era (LITR 220-01) Fall 2019, Studies in the Arts and Humanities (AIID 201), Fall 2019, and Honors First Year Seminar (HNRS 101) Fall 2019

Digital Tools : Perusall and Recogito

I have plans for all three of my Fall courses:

I. AIID 201 Studies in the Arts and Humanities Fall 2019 (also Sp. 2020):

Sample Perusall annotation screen.

 I plan to use Perusall in this course. I include running exercises with annotation in this (and other courses). Usually this takes the form of quizzing or in-class exercises using key questions I offer the students (1. What is strange in the text? 2. What is repeated in the text? 3. What is confusing in the text? 4. What is familiar in the text?).

 Using Perusall, I hope to “seed” early online readings (pdf’s posted on Moodle) with annotation exercises. Then, I hope to follow up in the second half of the semester when our readings are mostly physical (hard copy books).

II. LITR 220 Survey American Literature: Pre-Columbian to RomanticFall 2019 (also Sp. 2020):

Sample Recogito place annotation screen.

Students in LITR 220 read Moby Dick, a text we spread over the course of the semester. I am planning to use Recogito here to “map” the text, emphasizing both the local and global in the text. Early chapters of Moby Dick take place in New York city, Bedford MA, and Nantucket Island MA.

Later chapters, of course, span the globe, concluding in the Sea of Japan. I am planning to create exercises that ask students to map select chapters and annotate the text with questions for discussion. I believe this will be a group project.

III. HNRS 101 First Year Seminar (Honors): American Crime FictionFall 2019 (also Sp. 2020):

Students in HNRS 101 read The Talented Mr. Ripley. I am planning to use Recogito here to “map” the text, emphasizing (again) both the local and global in the text. Early chapters take place in New York city, and reference Princeton, NJ.

Most of the novel, takes place in Europe, mostly in Italy but also Paris. Highsmith invents a fictional Italian resort town (“Mongebello”). I am planning to create exercises that (again) ask students to map select chapters and annotate the text with questions for discussion. One area to explore is the question of why an author would create a fictional town. There is also the question of reading the film adaptation which we may also explore. In both LITR 201 & HNRS 101, I want students to imagine the global stage of American Literature.