Comedy as Critique
"Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up, but a comedy in long-shot." — Charlie Chaplin
Course Contract

The students who meet all the objective requirements listed below will be guaranteed a grade of “B” or better in this course.

You have your own page where you can see your progress in fulfilling these requirements. That page is password protected, and the password is the last 4 digits of your Queens ID#.

If you are in my 8am class, you can find your page HERE.

If you are in my 10:15 class, you can find your page HERE.


Presentation (5% of grade)

  • Be ready to present on the day you signed up
  • Summarize the contents of one of the articles I have suggested for the day you signed up
  • Explain its relationship to our class discussion as you understand it
  • Ask 1-2 open-ended discussion questions based on the article


Peer Review (5% of grade)

  • Come to class with a full draft on each peer review day
  • Give substantial feedback to classmates on each peer review day


In-Class Work (5% of grade)

  • When I ask you to do writings or exercises in class, do them in one notebook you can show me at the end of the semester, or alternatively record them later in the “In-Class Work” document in your Google Doc folder — put them somewhere that you can keep track of.
  • You may omit in-class writings for up to FOUR days that you were absent. After four, the journal no longer meets baseline requirements


Annotated Bibliography (5% of grade)

  • Contribute your two entries to the collective annotated bibliography that your group will do together in preparation for the research paper in Unit 3. Your two entries must each have:
    • An MLA style citation
    • A paragraph wherein you summarize the source and say what you found most useful about it


Reflective Cover Letters (5% of grade)

  • Submit a ½ page cover letter with assignments 1-3.
  • Address at least one (but as many as you want) of the following questions: What was I trying most to improve about my writing in this paper? What edits did I attempt between the rough draft and the final copy? What did I feel was most successful about this essay? What do I feel is still lacking?


Each Formal Assignment (together, 60% of grade)

  • Meet the length requirement
  • Answer the question of the prompt (be on-topic)
  • Assert an arguable thesis
  • Support claims with relevant evidence
  • Integrate the kinds of evidence the prompt requires:
    • For Assignment 1 – specific text or detail from your object of study
    • For Assignment 2 – specific text or detail from your object of study + specific evidence from the theory you have chosen as a lens
    • For Assignment 3 – specific evidence from the research you have done (cite at least four sources)
    • For Assignment 4 – whatever is necessary to provide context in your explication
  • Document any evidence from outside sources according to a style guide (MLA, APA, or Chicago), which means you MUST:
    • Include in-text citation
    • Include a Works Cited/References/Bibliography (depending on your style guide) page with entries for each source you used
  • Make substantial revisions between the rough draft you bring to peer review and the final copy


Active Contributor Status (15% of grade)

  • Miss four or fewer classes
  • Come to class prepared and having looked at the assigned readings or videos
  • Contribute to every class discussion either verbally or in the Google Doc record
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