Contagious Emotions & Other Brouhaha

So, remember in seminar yesterday when I was all like “AH MAN!  I would LOVE to share this cool radio-article with you about contagious emotions and how hysteria is catching!”  And I was all sad that the school year is over and we didn’t have time for it?

Well, here’s a link to the show that clip is in.  It’s from a show called Radiolab.  If you are going to be traveling (or bored) this summer, check out their podcasts.  This show is why I am so coo-coo-bananas over brains and whatnot.  It’s also more proof of the power of storytelling: when science meets stories, magic happens!

(OOPS! I forgot to add the link to the show on laughter.  Here it is.  You can listen to the whole show or just click on the “Contagious Laughter” story at the bottom of the page.)

Listen to the first part of this episode on bliss to hear an arctic explorer become insanely happy when he digs something mundane up from under the snow. (It’ll make you smile and maybe even laugh out-loud.)

The episode on race is fascinating and is a great companion to our unit on The Harlem Renaissance, slavery, convict leasing, etc. Race isn’t what you think it is.

The episode on cities is also uber-intersting, especially considering many of you will be graduating in a year and may be living in cities other than Sparta.

Here’s an episode on morality (since it came up in seminar recently).  And here’s an episode on why people are good & here’s one on why people are bad. 🙂

Here’s an episode on how/why deception works & why we need lies in our lives sometimes.

AKK!  I have so much to teach you and so little time…*sigh*

Y’all were a PHENOMENAL class!


Final Exam Study Guide

Final Exam Study Guide:
Borger, Spring 2015
Lit/Lang 3

Nearly all of the information related to the final exam can be found on this course website (by scrolling or using the links on the right side of the page).  A majority of the questions from the final will be taken directly from old tests and quizzes which you have in your possession. In effect, you have the questions and answers to the final exam: if you actually study, you can easily get an “A.” Ironically, most students fail because they rely exclusively on memory from four months ago.  Do yourself a favor: study for the final if you are not exempt.

  • Realism notes from textbook
  • “To Build a Fire” by Jack London
  • “Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” by Ambrose Pierce
  • Excerpt of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas
  • Excerpt from Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
  • Of Mice and Men
  • Slavery by Another Name and issues related to convict leasing & The Great Migration
  • Harlem Renaissance
  • Modern notes from textbook
  • “I Too Sing America” by Langston Hughes
  • “Tableau” by Countee Cullen
  • The Crucible
  • Puritan notes from the text & beginning of the year
  • Salem Witch Trials

Crucible Essay

Choose one of the two options below.

Write an essay in which you discuss the ways in which the individual must sometime go against the “moral fashion of the time.”  The essay will have four sections plus an introduction.  Include in your paper:

  • A discussion of Proctor’s decision to rebel against his times–What did he do?  What were the results?
  • Then choose a second character in the play and analyze her/his actions in terms of their willingness to go against the “moral fashion of the times.”
  • In your third section discuss a time when you have been willing to stand up to what everyone else does, or thinks is right.  Explain the details of the situation, how you felt during the situation, and the results.
  • Draw some larger conclusion as the role of the individual in society.  What should she/he do when confronted with society’s rules that are in opposition to personal values?


Write a four paragraph essay in which you trace the development of 1-2 of the characters in The Crucible.  Each body paragraph should include at least 2-3 quotes about or by the character you are analyzing.  (Body paragraphs will probably run about 200 words).  These paragraphs should focus on how the character changed and what caused those changes.  Static characters should be described throughout the play.  Note: One of the characters you analyze must by dynamic.

The first paragraph should identify the work and the author, include a 5-7 sentence plot summary, and end with a thesis describing the characters you will analyze.  The final paragraph will summarize your main points and end with a discussion of why the people of Salem acted the way they did.