Thursday, September 4

Today is Thursday of WEEK 2 of the class. For those of you in Myth-Folklore or World Lit, Thursday morning, until noon, is the grace period if you forgot to do any of the assignments that were due on Wednesday. (Indian Epics has no Wednesday assignments, so no Thursday grace period is needed.)

Ning blogging tips. Many of you will be posting at the Ning tonight, Thursday. If you need reminders about images and links in blogs, just check in the Ning FAQs and Tips section on the main page of the Ning, left-hand column, and you should be able to find the information you need.

Week 2 Internet Assignment: Webpages. This week, your Internet assignment will be to publish your first webpages. I am available during the day on Thursday and on Friday to help you with this if you run into any technical difficulties. So, if this is your first time to publish webpages in your OU webspace, please make sure you get to work on this assignment now, and do not put it off until the weekend. I check my email less frequently over the weekend, so in order to make sure you are able to ask questions and get help if needed, please get started on publishing your first webpages now.

Storybook Stack. There are just a few Week 2 and Week 3 assignments in the Storybook stack (you can check the contents of the stack here). Please make sure you save the Storybook assignment emails that I send back to you with comments, because you will need those comments for the Storybook assignment in the following week! My comments are marked with ==> in the body of the email. This is the only assignment during the week for which I record the points for you in the Gradebook, and I record those points at the same time that I send the comments back to you. If you ever have any question about the comments I send back to you (for example, if I don't explain something clearly) or if I forget to record the points (it does happen sometimes), please just let me know!

Week 2 blog comment assignment. The Week 2 blog commenting assignment is not available yet; it will be available starting on Friday, September 5. The blog commenting assignment is the only assignment you cannot complete early, because people will still be adding posts to their blog today, Thursday. At midnight tonight, the list of blog assignments will become available and you will have Friday-Saturday-Sunday to complete that assignment. I know that might be inconvenient for some of you based on your complicated schedules, which is why there is extra credit available every week: if for some reason you are not able to complete the blog commenting assignment during the allotted three-day time period, you can always make it up with the available extra credit assignments, no questions asked!

September 4: Mary Renault. Today, September 4, marks the birthday of the English novelist Mary Renault who was born in 1904 and died in 1983. Renault wrote novels based on ancient Greek mythology and ancient Greek history. She wrote a pair of novels about the mythological hero Theseus (The King Must Die, Bull from the Sea), as well as a trilogy of novels about Alexander the Great. It is the middle novel of that trilogy - The Persian Boy - which is my own personal favorite of her novels. The novel is narrated by Bagoas, the Persian boy whom Alexander notoriously took as his lover. Renault was one of the first historical novelists to write openly about homosexual love in ancient Greece, and the story she tells in The Persian Boy is intense, dramatic and unforgettable. Highly recommended!