weekly reports: (30%)

For ten of the semester’s weeks, students will write a 1 page paper that synthesizes the readings and our synchronous and asynchronous sessions. Weekly Reports are due by midnight on Friday, uploaded onto Canvas. The report will respond to all four of the following prompts:

  • Identify at least one concept, event, claim, or proper noun mentioned in the readings that is unfamiliar to you. Use Reference Tools on the library website to look up information about it and report your findings, along with the source(s) of any information you find. Anything that could be answered with a fact-check, quick definition, or basic research might be included under this prompt. Be sure to indicate when you are quoting directly from another source by using quotation marks.

    For example, if a weekly reading referenced the encomienda, and I did not know that that is, I would start by using OneSearch to find information on the encomienda.

    That search brings me to the Columbia Research Encyclopedia, where I learn that the encomienda is “system of tributory labor established in Spanish America,” along with other information on its origins and use in the Americas. I’ll summarize this in my first paragraph, and then make sure to cite my source.[^1]

  • Identify one of the Questions or Themes raised in earlier weeks that one of the assigned readings helps to answer. Then explain why you think this source sheds light on this specific question.

  • Connect at least one of the readings to the lectures from the week they were assigned. How do the readings complement or contradict or expand on topics discussed in class?

  • Finish with a question of your own on the readings, sessions, or themes that you feel has significance.

The entire report will be no more than about one typed, single-spaced page.

take home exams (25% each)

There will be two take home exams- roughly a midterm and final. You will need to write a well-formed essay from a selection of questions that I will provide you. Your essay must draw off of only our readings and sessions.

film reaction (20%)

We have feature length films this semester, La Otra Conquista, Zama, and También la lluvia. Students must write a 3-5 page analysis on one of these films, the first which treats the question of the spiritual conquest of Nahuatl civilization, and second of which treats the vanity, ambition, and capriciousness of late colonial rule. Screen dates will be announced in class.

Instructions for the La Otra Conquista version of this assignment are here.

For instructions for the Zama version of the assignment, click here.

And, if you choose También la lluvia, it’s here.