Tag Archives: pedagogy

Scholar's Day 2012: Beware Women!


Tomorrow, I’ll be leading a Scholar’s Day mock classroom event with 9 newly-admitted students who received high academic awards. My presentation is titled “Beware Women! Jonathan Swift and Lady Mary Wortley Montagu on Women and Writing in the 18th Century.” I love to teach these classes, particularly because they offer us an opportunity to start off on an exciting, academic footing with our new students, but also because there’s always the possibility of stealing a few more English majors to fill our coffers! I’ll be teaching two of my favorite poems from the 18th century, Swift’s “Lady’s Dressing Room” and Montagu’s richly-titled response–“The Reasons that Induced Dr. S— to Write a Poem Call’d ‘The Lady’s Dressing Room.'” I’ve taught other classes using these texts, but typically I foreground formal issues of meter and rhyme to lead into a discussion of parody and satire.  For the mock class tomorrow, I’m going to foreground questions of gender and authorship, framed by the role of poetry in the public sphere.

Here’s my presentation handout, as well as a page from J. Paul Hunter’s essay on “Couplets and Conversation,” from The Cambridge Companion to Eighteenth-Century Poetry. I’ve also got a recording of Swift’s “The Lady’s Dressing Room” and Montagu’s “Reasons that Induced…,” which we’ll listen to–I’m going to have students read Hunter aloud, instead of the poems, as I want them to be able to devote more energy to comprehending the verses. Here’s a PDF of the two poems, annotated–Swift’s is annotated by Jack Lynch, and Montagu’s, by me.

The Arcades | Wander through my musings on Victorian literature and culture, Steampunk, Neo-Victorian novels, and the digital humanities.

By Kathryn Crowther

I was so inspired by how excitedly and with what hands-on innovation the students had responded to the assignment that it led me re-think a lot of my traditional assignments. I started examining the ways that more innovative pedagogy – pushing the boundaries of my own knowledge and comfort – -could inspire students to do the same in their own work. So, as I worked on the syllabus, assignments and outcomes for my next course I kept thinking about the role of creativity in the classroom and asking questions like: To what degree should we expect out students to be creative or original? Is there a place for that in the composition classroom? Our composition classrooms here at Tech already push against traditional notions of composition, expanding the limited definitions of communication to include WOVEN (Written, Oral, Visual, Electronic, and Non-Verbal) and encouraging multimodality in all aspects of our pedagogy and the students’ work. The use of digital pedagogy, I feel, opens up the doors for creativity – both for us as teachers when designing assignments and thinking about innovative ways to help our students learn and for students to practice the essential skills of communication and rhetoric that they’ll need as students at Georgia Tech and as citizens of the digital world.

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