Uncategorized

Diversity and Inclusion Statement

I am committed to furthering diversity and inclusion in my classroom. My approach is particularly informed by two theories: intersectionality and trauma-informed pedagogy (TIP). I also follow pedagogical practices in writing that minimize the effects of colonization on marginalized people in their work. I strive to create an equitable environment in which we do not discriminate based on culture, gender, race, gender identity, sexual identity, ability, appearance, or religion. We seek to understand each other better to unpack our biases and expand our schemas. 

I create space for all voices in my classroom, but I work to center marginalized voices whenever possible. This means allowing students with intersecting identities of oppression space to discuss their perspectives and experiences as frequently as possible and encouraging research and discussion on and by populations that are under-researched. 

Trauma-Informed Pedagogy provides guidelines for minimizing harm to students who may experience secondary trauma from the study or discussion of traumatic issues, such as violence, family abuse, and childhood sexual abuse. I allow students to use coping mechanisms in the classroom and provide alternative assignments for students who may have first-hand experiences of these and other issues.

Finally, when designing and evaluating writing assignments, I value the ability to think and communicate clearly over replicating the white, privileged norms of grammar and syntax in academic writing. My training in minimal marking practices helps students prioritize communication over perfection, and allows students to develop their thinking while improving their writing. 

Uncategorized

Deep Cuts – Late October

More news and stuff.

John Oliver on legal immigration – really good look at our immigration process and how difficult it is, especially from large countries
Hassan Minhaj on coffee shitty research.
Hassan talking to Desi kids and apparently being peak uncle.

Things to calm your brain:

This corgi.
Paul Rudd eating spicy wings while being totally meta (and super immature you’ve been warned).
Birds are weird.
Belated doggo halloween awesomeness

Uncategorized

Deep Cuts – Early October

Hidden Brain – Outrage culture on the internet – we discussed this in 347 this week

Sticks and Stones: On the Media – the history of free speech in the US (this is intense but really, really interesting and apropos of our discussions)

Hassan Minhaj testifies before Congress on Student Loans – this is a short clip from the whole testimony. It’s funny but also pretty on the nose.

Breaks from reality:

Otters Chasing a Butterfly

This guy.

Uncategorized

Deep Cuts: 9/22/2019

Hasan Minhaj testifies in Congress on student loan debt

John Oliver on Legal Immigration

John Oliver on the Filibuster – this has come up in the debates and is way more critical than I realized. Do we end the filibuster or gerrymandering or the electoral college only if it benefits our current party? Or do we end them because they violate the basic ethical norms of society? I’m going with the latter…

More fun with medical bias in the news

And to lower your blood pressure after that crap: Can dogs love cats too much?

Uncategorized

Deep Cuts: 9/15/2019

Ted Talk: How the way English is taught silences students of color – The idea of NOT grading papers based on ideas grounded in colonialism is taught in an (optional) continuing education course available to UT professors and TAs. It profoundly changed how I teach writing flags. More of us need to take this, and take it in.

NPR: The Economists – an interview with an author on his book on the rise of economists as a social and political power in the US. We discussed briefly in 347. Highly recommended if you want to dig deeper into the conflation of unregulated capitalism with democracy.

Hasan Minhaj on Policing in AmericaSerious trigger warning here. It is, however, really informative if you’ve ever asked yourself, “How the hell does this keep happening?” when nobody ever gets prosecuted for killing unarmed people of color. Beyond the obvious aspects of systemic racism, there is some really effed up, but mostly hidden structural stuff that protects cops who violate the law to the exclusion of all else. Minhaj does a really good job of unpacking some of it.

On a lighter note:
Lizzo and Cookie Monster

Deep Cuts

Deep Cuts: Back from the Dead

I’m going to post stuff I’ve referenced in my classes and other things you might find interesting. Not required, but maybe useful.

Patriot Act with Hassan Minhaj: Exploitation in the Video Game Industry

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Bias in Medicine (both treatment and research)

Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness (podcast): What is techno-chauvinism? (it’s not exactly what you think – but it links up nicely with Oliver’s piece on bias)

Administrative crap, Expectations, Student Expectations

Attendance Policy

  • We take attendance for EVERY class, except for the first week of school and otherwise noted. Attendance is 25% of your grade.
  • Excused absences are those that are documented through the Dean of Students office, and infectious sicknesses with documentation (like the flu).
  • Absences that can be made up (with some limitations) are school-related activities such as sports, debate team, etc, post-graduation job interviews, and grad school interviews.
  • These MUST be cleared in advance with me. You are responsible for finishing your makeup work before the end of the semester.
  • Unexcused absences include: work, sleeping in, mild illness, your computer dying, etc.
  • If you are absent 3 or fewer times during the semester, you will get a bonus of 8 attendance points at the end of the semester.
  • I do not take absences personally. You know how much time and energy you have vs. the demands of your life. Just don’t ask me to give you points for classes you did not attend.
  • If you have SSD accommodations that include absences, please make an appointment with me at the beginning of the semester and we will discuss options.
  • Ask permission, not forgiveness. I am much more likely to work with you if I know what your needs are in advance or as soon as possible.