English 6352: Topics in Major Figures in Modern Rhetorical Theory: “The Bakhtinian Circle”: Bakhtin, Vološinov, Medvedev

Fall 2003

M 6:00 p.m.-8:50 p.m.

201 Carlisle Hall

 

Professor Kevin Porter

417 Carlisle Hall

Office Phone: 817-272-3112

Email: kporter1@uta.edu

Office Hours: M 1-3 and by appointment

 

Course Description

 

This course will concentrate on intensive readings of the major works of Mikhail Bakhtin and his colleagues, V. N. Vološinov and P. N. Medvedev, whose work on “dialogism” is of still growing importance to researchers in English studies broadly conceived. The course will also provide some context for the work of the members of the so-called “Bakhtinian Circle” by reading through some of texts of their precursors and contemporaries. We will also explore some of the recent explications and applications of dialogism by contemporary literary theorists, rhetoricians, compositionists, and discourse analysts.

 

Required Texts

 

Bakhtin, M. M. (2002). The Dialogic Imagination: Four Essays (M. Holquist, Ed.; C. Emerson & M. Holquist, Trans.). Austin: University of Texas Press. (ISBN: 0-292-71534-x; paperback)

Bakhtin, M. M. (1996). Speech Genres and Other Late Essays (C. Emerson & M. Holquist, Eds.; V. W. McGee, Trans.). Austin: University of Texas Press. (ISBN: 0-292-77560-1; paperback)

Bakhtin, M.M., & Medvedev, P. N. (1991). The Formal Method in Literary Scholarship: A Critical Introduction to Sociological Poetics (A. J. Wehrle, Trans.). Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press. (ISBN: 0-8018-4318-9; paperback)

Croce, Bernedetto. (1995). Ćsthetic as Science of Expression and General Linguistic (D. Ainslie, Trans.). New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers. (ISBN: 1-56000-818-0; paperback)

Farmer, Frank. (Ed.). (1998). Landmark Essays on Bakhtin, Rhetoric, and Writing. Mahwah, NJ: Hermagoras Press/Lawrence Erlbaum. (ISBN: 1-880393-31-X; paperback)

Felch, Susan, & Contino, Paul. (2001). Bakhtin and Religion: A Feeling for Faith. Chicago: Northwestern University Press. (ISBN: 0-8101-1825-4; paperback)

Gardiner, Michael E., & Bell, Michael M. (1998). Bakhtin and the Human Sciences: No Last Words. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. (ISBN: 0761955305; paperback)

Halasek, Kay. (1999). A Pedagogy of Possibility: Bakhtinian Perspectives on Composition Studies. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press. (ISBN: 0-8093-2227-7; paperback)

Vološinov, V. N. (2000). Marxism and the Philosophy of Language (L. Matejka & I. R. Titunik, Trans.). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. (ISBN: 0-674-55098-6; paperback)

 

Recommended Texts

 

Holquist, Michael. (2002). Dialogism: Bakhtin and His World (2nd ed.). London: Routledge. (ISBN: 0415280087; paperback)

 

Assignments

 

Assignments for the course: a discussion facilitation, a 15-20 minute oral presentation, 1 critical review based on the oral presentation, and a seminar paper of publishable length.

 

Grades

 

                Discussion Facilitation                                   10%

                Oral Presentation                                             20%

                Short Paper 1                                                     30%

                Seminar Paper                                                   40%

 

Not completing any of these assignments constitutes grounds for failing the course.

 

Attendance

 

This is a graduate level course: Attendance is mandatory, and active participation is expected.

 

Drop Policy

 

UTA instructors cannot drop students for any reason. You may choose to drop the course with a “W” by November 14th.

 

Schedule of Assignments

 

Note: I reserve the right to modify, as necessary, the readings and other assignments listed on this syllabus.

 

8/25        Introduction to course

 

9/1          Labor Day Holiday

 

9/8          Croce, Part I of Aesthetic as Science of Expression and General Linguistic

 

9/15        Saussure, Course in General Linguistics

 

9/22        ***           Thomas, The Linguistic Theories of N. Ja. Marr, Chapters IV-Conclusion

                ***           Gray, “Totalitarian Logic: Stalin on Linguistics”

 

9/29        Bakhtin/Medvedev, The Formal Method in Literary Scholarship

 

10/6        Vološinov, Marxism and the Philosophy of Language

 

10/13     Bakhtin, “Epic and Novel,” “From the Prehistory of Novelistic Discourse,” and “Discourse in the Novel,” from The Dialogic Imagination

 

10/20     Bakhtin, “Forms of Time and of the Chronotope in the Novel,” from The Dialogic Imagination.

                ****         Schryer, “Genre Space/Time: Chronotopic Strategies of the Experimental Article.”

 

10/27     Bakhtin, Speech Genres and Other Essays

 

11/3        Open date: Seminar Paper proposals due

 

11/10     Bell & Gardiner, eds. Bakhtin and the Human Sciences

 

11/17     Felch & Contino, eds. Bakhtin and Religion

 

11/24     Farmer, ed. Landmark Essays on Bakhtin, Rhetoric, and Writing (selections):

                Schuster, “Mikhail Bakhtin as Rhetorical Theorist.”

                Harris, “Bakhtin, Phaedrus, and the Geometry of Rhetoric.”

                Kent, “Hermeneutics and Genre.”

                Cooper, “Dialogic Learning Across Disciplines.”

                Bialostosky, “Liberal Education, Writing, and the Dialogic Self.”

                Welch, “One Student’s Many Voices: Reading, Writing, and Responding with Bakhtin.”

                Ewald, “Waiting for Answerability: Bakhtin and Composition Studies.”

 

12/1        Halasek, A Pedagogy of Possibility

 

12/8        Final course papers due by 12:00 p.m.

 

Academic Dishonesty

 

It is the philosophy of The University of Texas at Arlington that academic dishonesty is a completely unacceptable mode of conduct and will not be tolerated in any form. All persons involved in academic dishonesty will be disciplined in accordance with University regulations and procedures. Discipline may include suspension or expulsion from the University. “Scholastic dishonesty includes but is not limited to cheating, plagiarism, collusion, the submission for credit of any work or materials that are attributable in whole or in part to another person, any act designed to give unfair advantage to a student or the attempt to commit such acts.” [Regents' Rules and Regulations, Part One, Chapter Vi, Section 3, Subsection 3.2, Subdivision 3.22]

 

Disability Policy

 

The University of Texas at Arlington is on record as being committed to both the spirit and letter of federal equal opportunity legislation; reference Public Law 93112--The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. With the passage of new federal legislation entitled Americans with Disabilities Act - (ADA), pursuant to section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, there is renewed focus on providing this population with the same opportunities enjoyed by all citizens. As a faculty member, I am required by law to provide “reasonable accommodation” to students with disabilities, so as not to discriminate on the basis of that disability. Student responsibility primarily rests with informing faculty at the beginning of the semester and in providing authorized documentation through designated administrative channels.

 

Student Assistance

 

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Bomb Threats

 

If anyone is tempted to call in a bomb threat, be aware that UTA will attempt to trace the phone call and prosecute all responsible parties. Every effort will be made to avoid cancellation of the presentations/tests caused by bomb threats. Unannounced alternative sites will be available for these classes. Your instructor will make you aware of alternate class sites in the event that your classroom is not available.