Leroy Searle’s undergraduate honors course called The Natural History of Reading culiminates this week in an interdisciplinary conference bringing together scholars from across the country to discuss reading, conversation, and the academy. This conference represents part Prof. Searle’s larger efforts to change standard discipline-specific conference model and find new ways to build productive academic communities working on foundational problems.
The description of the conference schedule, conceit, and participants appears after the break. The official schedule is not up yet, but will appear soon. I plan on making it to at least a couple of sessions. Hopefully, I’ll be able to take a greater role in Prof. Searle’s future projects.
The Natural History of Reading
Thursday, June 3: 1:20-3:20: Mary Gates Hall 228
Friday, June 4: 1:15-3:30 Mary Gates Hall 258
Saturday, June 5: 9:00-4:00 Simpson Center (Communications)
This conference is the culmination of a specially designed Honors course, on the topic, “The Natural History of Reading.” Speakers include the students enrolled in the course, plus seven guests, from several universities. The focus for the conference is the role of reading in teaching and research, and will consider a wide range of issues, perspectives, and problems connected directly with reading.
The model for this event departs in some particulars from typical academic conferences. The objective is to bring together people who have both a history of conversations stretching over considerable periods, and drawing from all levels of the academic profession: Professors with long established careers, Professors who have taught for extended periods at universities of different size and character, graduate students who are just finishing the Ph.D.; graduate students who are just beginning in a Ph.D. program; and undergraduates who are just finishing the B.A.. In this particular iteration of the model, all of the people know the UW, and most of them know each other. Many of you are acquainted with some of the participants. Colleagues from the UW in other departments are also on the program. There will be similar conferences on the same topic in the future at other universities, with plans for future publication of a multi authored book, representing the best work on the teaching of reading across the same range of participants, from university undergraduates to established professors with lengthy careers.
The course which has led to this conference has concentrated on issues of reading with particular attention to the idea of textual traditions that provide not only a shared language for discussion, but a resource for innovation and insight. We have concentrated on religious texts, scientific texts, and artistic texts.
- Paul Berger, UW Art Department
- Leah Caglio, UW Honors
- Gina Chen, UW Honors
- Sammy Chung, UW Honors
- Thomas Dechand, Johns Hopkins U.
- Karl Eckhardt, UW Honors
- Stephen Folkins, UW Honors
- Claire Fox, UW Honors
- Zachary Gartenberg, Johns Hopkins U.
- Paul Harris, UW Honors
- Teague Henry, UW Honors
- Bruce Hevly, UW History Department
- Semonti Hossain, UW Honors
- Nicholas Janetos, UW Honors
- William Johnson, UW Honors
- Samantha Leck, UW Honors
- Mark Long, Keene State University NH
- Matthew Mullen, UW Honors
- Jennifer Nielsen, UW Honors
- Dana Ringuette, Eastern Illinois University
- James Searle, SUNY Albany
- Conor Sutherland, UW Honors
- Ellen Van Wyk, UW Honors
- Brandon Weaver, UW Honors
- Di Zhang, UW Honors
Please watch for the poster announcing the conference. A detailed program will be posted on the course website (url above) early next week..