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College Catalogue

Writing

Faculty
Maurice Isserman, History
Margaret Thickstun, English

Special Appointment
Sharon Williams

Writing is a central focus of the academic mission of Hamilton. All students must complete the Writing Program by passing at least three writing-intensive courses, each taken in a different semester. For detailed information on the writing requirement, see "Standards for Written Work" under "Academic Regulations." A complete list of writing-intensive courses is published each semester in the pre-registration materials from the Office of the Registrar.

Note that there is no concentration in Writing.

The following courses offer intensive focus on the development of writing skills.

110F Writing about the Environment.
Students will develop their ability to analyze and compose written argument about current environmental issues, including climate change, alternative energy sources and resource conservation. Readings are drawn from current and classic writing about the environment; writing assignments include essays, persuasive letters and a short research paper. (Writing-intensive.) (Proseminar.) Open to first-year students only. Students may take only one 100-level course in Writing. Maximum enrollment, 16. S Williams.

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111F Adventure Writing.
Students will learn the basics of good writing through writing about their own outdoor experiences and writing about the history of exploration and mountaineering. Readings will range from the 1804-06 journals of the Lewis and Clark expedition to books about contemporary Himalayan mountaineering. Students are required to take two class trips to the Adirondacks on Saturdays during the semester: a one-day canoe trip in September, and a one day climbing trip in October. (Writing-intensive.) (Proseminar.) (Writing-intensive.) (Proseminar.) Open to first-year students only. Students may take only one 100-level course in Writing. Maximum enrollment, 16. Isserman.

[112F] Writing Arguments.
Students will develop their ability to analyze and conduct arguments by reading arguments about such diverse topics as what makes good writing, what creates excellent Olympic swimmers, and what scientific research can tell us about what it means to be human. Readings are drawn from a variety of disciplines and from magazines, such as "The New Yorker" and "Natural History," as well as from classic texts such as Plato's "Apology" and King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail." (Writing-intensive.) (Proseminar.) Open to first-year students only. Students may take only one 100-level course in Writing. Maximum enrollment, 16.

114F Writing about Diversity in America.
The US has a long and tumultuous history of dealing with diversity in all its forms. This course will examine contemporary issues that arise in this ongoing struggle. We will examine and write about diversity in a wide variety of forms such as: race, class, ability, sexual orientation, and religion. The course goals include not only learning about diversity but also helping each student find his/her voice on these issues, learning how to discuss them in a respectful, honest and productive manner. (Writing-intensive.) (Proseminar.) Maximum enrollment, 16. Orvis.

[310S] Seminar in Expository Writing.
Designed for students from any concentration who wish to improve their writing. Offers constant practice in composing a variety of essays. Drafts of essays are discussed in frequent peer tutorials. Other class meetings take up such matters as grammar, mechanics, audience, tone and style. (Writing-intensive.) Open to sophomores, juniors and seniors. May not be counted toward the concentration or minor in any department or program. Maximum enrollment, 12.

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