This page contains questions
or prompts that you are welcome to use as you
write your messages on the Hum 1110 Discussion
Set “A” Readings
any of these you wish to answer
about the current and/or
previous time period covered in our textbooks. When you write, you may
offer opinion, fact, or any mix of it, as long as you support what you
argue. Please be sure to write something substantially different
from what you wrote in your weekly “Comments” papers for the chapters of our
texts. Be thoughtful, be controversial, compare/contrast, ask questions
and try to answer your own, see what other people think of your ideas and/or
CULTURE: Describe, step by step or part by part, how/why some of the
special elements of culture during this time period have special interest to
you or to our present culture: e.g., women’s roles, war, violence, home and
hearth, travel, economics, religious practices, sexuality, etc.?
COMPARISON/CONTRAST: If you were to compare and/or contrast this
week’s time period with another one (and/or with modern times), how would
you do so, what results would you get, and why?
SET A, THE
ARTS: If you were to pick one of the types of arts during this time
period (music, visual art, sculpture, architecture, stage plays, literature,
dance, etc.), how would you compare and/or contrast it with those of another
time period, and why/how?
SYNTHESIS OF 2 PERIODS: How have two forms of beliefs, arts, or
cultures synthesized or combined: how does this time period tie
together—or create a new whole or new, combined movement or combined
idea—with one before or after it, and/or with modern times, and why?
GENERAL REACTIONS: Do not summarize what you read. Do not
write about or discuss the same thing you did in your “Comments” paper on
the textbook readings, unless you do so in a much different way showing new
thinking about the subject. Do please describe your reactions
to the reading: what did different points make you think of? What did you
feel about different aspects of the assignment? If you had lived in those
times/places, what would you most have liked and/or disliked? What do you
think was a central issue or focus for most people then?
PHILOSOPHY/RELIGION: What are one or more important philosophical or
religious ideas that you see developing in this time period, and how/why are
they important? Don't just repeat what the text says: offer your own
interpretations, feelings, etc., tying what you say into or back to that
older period of time.
Set “B” General-Discussion
As you answer the Set “B” question(s), you may
offer opinion, fact, or any mix of it, as long as you support what you say.
Be thoughtful, be controversial, compare/contrast, ask questions and try to
answer your own, see what other people think of your ideas and/or feelings,
WEEK 1-B (First Week):
In Week 1-B, answer the question
asked in the Week 1-B prompt: “How
would you define 'humanities,' 'culture,' and/or 'civilization?' (Hint: it
may help you to read the introduction to one of the humanities textbooks
first and/or to use a dictionary, Wikipedia, etc.) What do 'the
humanities,' 'culture,' and/or 'civilization' mean to you (or feel like, or
how do you participate in them) now, as you start this course?).”
If you haven’t reached 200+ w.,
yet, then you may also add some of the following: “What would you like to
get out of this class or hope to learn? Why are you taking this class rather
than another? What do you actually know about ancient, classical, medieval,
and renaissance times? What do the humanities disciplines mean to you, why,
and how; and which of the humanities do you like best, and why/how?”
At the end of the course, in
Week 16-B, answer the question asked in the Week 16-B prompt.
GENERAL QUESTIONS FOR MOST WEEKS:
You may bring up any idea,
topic, or experience you want that is related to the course subjects.
However, here are some possible questions you are welcome to discuss, too:
What is “culture”—what are a
few definitions or meanings of it? And what, in your opinion, are the
stages, steps, or layers of acquiring culture through which most children
and/or adults go as they continue to grow, and why/how?
Now that you’ve seen the
humanities in action, please consider and discuss one or more of the
How do you think individuals and
societies as a whole study, learn, watch, and rediscover the humanities?
Is study of the humanities, past
and/or present, good or bad, and why/how? A famous saying about history is
that if we do not study it, we are condemned to repeat it.
How/why might this statement tie
in with studying the humanities? What part or parts of the humanities from
the past might need to be reawakened/restudied in our own times, and in what
part(s) of the current world?
Imagine that you were born in
one of the historical times and places we have studied. Choose an
interesting role in that time and place. Give a brief one- or two-sentence
summary of who, what, when, and where you are. Then describe your beliefs
and why/how your believe them.
MUSEUM/PLAY VISITS (Four total, or two of reach):
What did you think of our first
visit to a museum/play?
What was the best part? The
What did you get out of it?
What would you most like to remember?
What are several ways in which
what you saw and heard tie in with what we’ve been reading/discussing in
MIDDLE OF SEMESTER:
How is class going for you,
why/how do you think this is so, and what would you change about the course,
if anything? Do you have any questions that other people might be able to
answer for you?
WEEKS 10-B and/or 14-B:
You may use the regular
questions, above, or use any subject related to the course that you wish,
you use one of the prompts below:
How would you now explain your
overall understanding of the humanities using one or more of the following
four overview methods?
If you could lay out the
humanities like a visual map or a geographic place, what would your
map/place look like?
If you were to create a piece of
music or a sculpture representing the humanities as a subject, what would it
sound or look/feel like?
If you were to describe learning
the humanities as a series of steps, what steps would you develop or
describe for others to follow?
If you were to teach the
humanities in high school, how would you do so and why?
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