RCCORE 100 - First Year Seminar
Section: 009 In Search of the Good Life
Term: FA 2010
Subject: RC Core Courses (RCCORE)
Department: LSA Residential College
Credits:
4
Requirements & Distribution:
FYWR
Consent:
With permission of instructor.
Advisory Prerequisites:
SWC Writing Assessment. Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor.
Repeatability:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Is the good life better than the life I live

This is the question Kanye West asks in his Grammy-award-winning song, The Good Life.

And this is the question that has driven people from time immemorial to make dramatic changes to their lives, to move from one side of the planet to another, one city to another within the same country, to move around the block. To sing, to dance, to write. To build cars. To make war, to make love. To make money. And just to wander. During the term we will read an eclectic assortment of work that tries to grapple with modern wanderers in search of a good life better than the one they have. Through the readings, ranging from John Steinbeck’s powerful story of westward migration, The Grapes of Wrath, to Luis Alberto Urrea’s equally powerful non-fiction account of Mexican northern migration, The Devil’s Highway, we will experience a variety of expressions of people searching, at times against all odds, for a better life. Our readings will take us around the globe, to China for Mian Mian’s Candy and back home for Junot Diaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and finally ending with the campus theme book, The Wizard of Oz.
Writing is a process that includes brainstorming, researching, creating drafts and rewriting in order to achieve a finished product. Along the way, we often discover that original ideas may metamorphose as words meet paper and the writer begins to interact with them outside of the head.
This class will be opportunity rich for interacting with words outside of the head and learning about shifts in content and style as we attempt to explore the shifts in our lives and place ourselves in a social context. The course will emphasize the use of details, humor, personal observation and an assortment of techniques used in fiction that can strengthen expository writing.
The only way to learn to write is to write. To that end, students will write a series of five papers, each 4-5 pages in length, based on the assigned readings. The sixth and final project will be an 8-10 page paper, exploring some aspect of social and/or personal transition. All work, except for the final paper, will include revisions as needed. In addition, students should be prepared to share work in class as well as participate in creative, in-class writing exercises.

Required Reading:

  • John Steinbeck – The Grapes of Wrath
  • Luis Alberto Urrea – The Devil’s Highway
  • Mian Mian – Candy
  • Junot Diaz - The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao
  • J. Frank Baum - The Wizard of Oz

    Technical Resource:
    William Strunk and E.B. White – The Elements of Style

RCCORE 100 - First Year Seminar
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
P
19985
Closed
0
 
-
MW 3:00PM - 4:30PM
002 (SEM)
P
19987
Open
1
1RC Ugrd
-
TuTh 11:00AM - 12:30PM
003 (SEM)
P
22539
Open
5
5RC Ugrd
-
MW 4:00PM - 5:30PM
004 (SEM)
P
25135
Open
1
1RC Ugrd
-
WF 11:00AM - 1:00PM
005 (SEM)
P
25137
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 3:00PM - 5:00PM
006 (SEM)
P
25139
Closed
0
 
-
MW 3:00PM - 4:30PM
007 (SEM)
P
25141
Open
4
4RC Ugrd
-
TuTh 11:00AM - 12:30PM
008 (SEM)
P
25143
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM
M 7:00PM - 9:00PM
009 (SEM)
P
25145
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 3:00PM - 4:30PM
011 (SEM)
P
35279
Open
3
3RC Ugrd
-
MW 11:00AM - 12:30PM
012 (SEM)
P
30573
Open
1
1RC Ugrd
-
TuTh 3:00PM - 4:30PM
013 (SEM)
P
28475
Open
1
1RC Ugrd
-
TuTh 4:00PM - 5:30PM
014 (SEM)
P
46141
Open
9
 
-
MW 3:00PM - 4:30PM
015 (SEM)
P
46142
Open
11
 
-
MW 11:00AM - 12:30PM
016 (SEM)
P
49017
Open
1
 
-
MW 4:00PM - 6:00PM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.


ISBN: 0140281622
The Grapes of Wrath, Author: John Steinbeck, Publisher: Penguin 1999
Required
Other Textbook Editions OK.
ISBN: 9780316010801
The Devil's Highway, Author: Luis Alberto Urrea
Required
Other Textbook Editions OK.
ISBN: 0316563560
Candy, Author: Mian Mian
Required
Other Textbook Editions OK.
ISBN: 9781594483295
Brief Wonderous Life of Wao, Author: Junot Dia
Required
Other Textbook Editions OK.
ISBN: 9780451530295
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Author: L. Frank Baum
Required
Other Textbook Editions OK.
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