Fairy Tales Across Cultures and Time
Fairy Tales Across Cultures
Exploration of fairy tales from a wide range of cultures and time periods. Works by cultural critics, psychoanalysts, historians, and sociologists to help understand the cultural and historical context of these tales' production, as well as explain their enduring relevance. Study of how various artists have kept these tales alive by reappropriating them for their own cultural contexts. Looking at traditional works of art from different cultures and historical periods, as well as examples from today's popular culture. Asking the following questions: What is the relevance of each tale and its rewriting for its particular cultural context and historical period? What aspects of the tales do the different renderings emphasize? Is there something about these tales that transcends the particular time and place in which they were created? And if so, do they tell us something about our common humanity?
Letter Grade with Credit/No Credit Option
Is there a course fee?
A visiting faculty member
Course Type - Major/Minor
Should the course satisfy a major or minor requirement or elective?
Satisfies an elective for the major or minor
Satisfies one of the electives for the German Major
Course Scheduling (Including Lab, Studio and Discussion/Conference Time)
Does your course have a separately scheduled lab, discussion, conference or studio section that is associated with the lecture section?
Is this course being taught on an off-campus or overseas study program?
Is this course intended to fulfill a General Education requirement?
Bibliographic Research in Writing (BRW)
The idea for this course comes from a BRW workshop I attended at the Watzek library. I learned that there is a shortage of 100-level BRW courses. To help fill this gap, I decided to re-design one of my Core 107 classes.
The course is designed to teach students how to do research and apply their findings to their academic writing. Jim Bunnelle from the Watzek library and I are collaborating on this project to ensure it meets the BRW requirements. This Spring, we will also apply for the BRW stipend through Watzek library to optimize the bibliographic research aspect of this course.
Each assignment in the course is geared towards students learning to do research and apply their learning. Students will write three short papers and create an annotated bibliography, which will then culminate in a larger research project. The first paper will be a very short creative project which will give me insight into each student's writing abilities. The second paper, where students engage in a close reading of a primary work, teaches them to critically engage sources. Students will then put together an annotated bibliography, which will introduce them to the scholarship on their chosen topic. The third short essay will be a critical response to one of the articles they found when creating their bibliography. This will teach them how to critically engage with other scholars. The final, longer research paper will then draw from these previous assignments, as students will apply their research, as well as their critical engagement, to additional materials and write a comparative research paper.
All of these assignments will be done with constant feedback from their instructor, as well as meetings with Watzek librarians and work in the Watzek library.
The majority of the course content will be drawn from outside the United States. The main focus will be Europe, but we will also look at other cultures outside the United States. We will compare the insights we gain from looking at how different cultures have responded to their fairy tale traditions to how the United States has represented and reworked these tropes. Because fairy tales have worked their way into all aspects of culture, a comparison of fairy tales from different cultures will allow us to compare the politics, economics, societies, creative arts and cultures of the different regions we will be studying.
Because I have taught fairy tales in German as well as in Core in the past, the library already has a good selection of materials available. Jim Bunnelle and I have been working together to make sure all the materials needed will be available. We do not anticipate to have to purchase additional materials.
Please explain in detail the reasons for adding or modifying this course. In your response, be sure to respond to the following:
While World Literatures and Languages offers first-year classes for the individual languages, we currently do not have a 100-level class for the department as a whole. We are therefore hoping that this class will draw more first-year students to our department and wake students' interest in World Languages and Literatures. In addition, the course will provide a space where students from the different languages have the opportunity to engage with their peers and celebrate each others' diversities.
I plan to expand this celebration of diversity beyond the class by organizing an international fairy tale film series, as well as an end-of-the-year gathering where we will celebrate the different cultures we have studied. We will invite all students on campus to these events so that they will have an opportunity to see the different cultures represented on campus.
I am also considering inviting guest speakers from the different language sections to present on their cultures so that students have an opportunity to meet different faculty members from WLL. This will allow us to bring our department together and foster community across the different cultures represented in World Languages and Literatures.
Because there is a dearth in BRW courses on the 100 level, this course will help fill this gap. The course is also an opportunity for the WLL department to contribute to GenEd (BRW and Global Perspectives).
While the World Literatures and Languages department has very strong individual language sections, we currently have only one course specifically designed for the department as a whole (Introduction to Linguistics). The 'Literatures' part of our department is relegated to the individual language sections. Considering the growing interest in diversity and inclusion, a class that brings together the diverse cultures of our department seems essential. At this point, Reed College is the only comparable institution in the area that has a comparative literature department. Together with Reed, Lewis and Clark would become a pioneer in furthering this important field of study, whose importance is growing in tandem with the recognition of the importance of diversity and inclusion.
At this point, this is a pilot course to see if there is interest from the students and how effective it is in fostering diversity and inclusion across the WLL department. If successful, we are hoping to turn it into a permanent comparative literature class that could be taught by different faculty in different years.
This course will contribute to Gen Ed (Global Perspectives), BRW, and it will also count as an elective for German majors. The course is also a pilot course for the possibility of establishing a permanent comparative literature course in the World Languages and Literatures Department.
The Watzek library is also involved insofar as I am working with Jim Bunnelle and this Spring, we are planning to apply for the BRW stipend through the library. Together, we will identify how to best use Watzek to support students in their bibliographic research for the course.
Because the study abroad program in Munich was cancelled last year, German is in need of electives for its majors, and for next year, this course will fulfill this need.