280 Introduction to California Studies, Spring 2010
Class meets Wednesdays 4:00 - 6:40 in Nichols Hall 204
Marilyn I. Cannon, Professor Emeritus in Biology
OFFICE: Darwin 216
PHONE: 664-2717 (office; voice mailbox)
Also, messages can be left in my mailbox in the Biology Dept.
Office Hours: Wednesday 1:30 - 3:00 (or by
ITDS 280/ENGL. 280,
Introduction to California Cultural Studies is an
interdisciplinary California humanities course which is designed to
meet the GE requirement of C4 and serve as an introduction to the
California Cultural Studies major. It is the introductory course for
both a major and minor in CCS.
- The theme is Environmental
in the sense that all cultures affect their environment and are in turn
affected by their environment. Thus, understanding California's many
unique landscapes and ecological communities are essential to an
understanding of California's literature, natural and human history,
and to the myriad of cultural experiences.
- This course explores the
way California writers, naturalists, geologists, biologists,
ecologists, environmentalists, photographers, artists, filmmakers,
architects and geographers have imagined and constructed California
lanscapes. Each lesson unit is organized around a bioregion with a
focus on how the many ethnic groups represent their culture and are
represented within a region. Field experiences will be joined with
in-class lectures/discussions and small group presentations.
Students are introduced to
the demands of living in a pluralistic society such as California, as
well as to the communication skills needed to develop cross-ethnic
and cross-cultural perspectives.
are available at the SSU Bookstore and through online sources.
Northlight Books in Cotati may have copies, also.
- Fradkin, Philip. 1997.
The Seven States of California: A Natural and Human History. U. C.
Press, Berkeley, 474 pp. ISBN 0-520-20942-7
- Gilbar, Steven. (Ed.)
1997. Natural State. U.C. Press, Berkeley, 377 pp. ISBN
- Mosley, Walter: Little
You must read all of the
class material; there will be a quizzes on the
Please come prepared to
discuss the works that are listed for each class.
Objectives for this
1. To provide students with a general introduction to California regionalism
2. To explore the relationships between land/cityscapes and ethnic and regional identity
3. To develop cultural and historical awareness of the uniqueness of California Culture
4. To connect imagined spaces with historical and natural spaces
5. To explore the aesthetic foundation of California arts and literature
6. To develop capacities and skill related to collaborative work
7. To gain experience communicating valuable insights and research results
Please note: Students
taking this course will already have some experience in critical
reading and writing for general fine arts and literature courses.
Prerequisites: completion of GE A1 and A2.
Analysis of a portfolio consisting of
all assignments: response papers, term paper/or project,
examinations, and assessment. Students must achieve competency in a
constellation of skills derived from discrete knowledge
- Semester Research Paper, Outline,
and Presentation = 20%
- Midterm #1; Midterm #2 and Final
Exam = 30%
- Response Papers (4 @ 25 points
each) = 20%
- Attendance = 20%
- Participation = 10%
90 - 100 % A 80 - 89 % B 70 - 79 % C 60 - 69 % D
Plus and minus grades will
be assigned for all (except A+, which is not allowed by
No Late Exams or assignments without a Doctor's note. Exams submitted
late will have at least 20% deducted from the score.
Late make-up exams must be
scheduled at least 48 hours in advance and require permission of the
instructor. Make-up exams will be penalized 10% unless a written
medical excuse is provided.
- You will not pass this
course if you do not finish the semester.
- You need to complete all
portions of the Midterm Exams and the Final Exam.
- No late examinations will
be given without a written medical excuse or prior arrangements with
- Students who wish to be
graded in a non-traditional mode (CR/NC, credit/ no credit) must file
a Change of Program form, indicating that grading choice at
the Office of Admissions and Records. CR will be assigned for
an earned grade of C- or better.
Attendance: It is
expected that you attend every class period.
All individuals participating in this course have a responsibility to
create and maintain an environment conducive to learning. A
learning-friendly environment is one that is free of distractions,
engages all participants in the learning process, and does not demean
or dehumanize any individual or group. Participants will
therefore adhere to the following:.
• Arrive on time and remain for the duration of class.
• Refrain from conducting private conversations in
• Use appropriate language and behavior that does not
demean or dehumanize any person or group of persons, whether or not
such persons are present.
Cell Phone and Technology Etiquette:
It is inappropriate to make or receive any type of cell phone calls or
text messages during class activities. This includes time in lecture,
lab, on field trips, and in university vans.
Students With Disabilities
The Disability Services for Students program is here to provide
academic accommodations to eligible students with disabilities, and to
help the University meet its obligations under the Americans with
Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of
1973. For more information, please call the DSS office at 664-2677.
Action for Repeats in Impacted Courses
The URL for the full SSU course repeating policy is
Go to Course
Go to Course
I. Cannon, January