Friday, January 29 - Sunday, January 31

HAPPY WEEKEND! You have reached the end of Week 2. The Week 2 Read and Respond assignment (blog commenting) is available now, and the remaining Week 2 assignments are due on Friday or on Saturday or Sunday - please make sure you get started on those assignments soon. If you do not finish them on Friday, you will need to make sure you finish them over the weekend.

Winter weather. For those of you who are living in Norman, winter weather has closed the campus for Friday. For this class, thank goodness, you don't have to worry about driving on icy roads to get to campus for a class meeting! If the weather does end up causing you some inconvenience and you miss some assignments (power outage, etc.), that's okay - there is lots of extra credit to make up anything that you might miss because of the weather. That's what the extra credit is there for! So, try to work ahead so that you are not facing the pressure of due dates and deadlines - and if you do end up missing some assignment(s), you can use extra credit to make up the missing points, no problem. Where I live, the winter weather will not arrive until Friday night, so I should be online as usual during the day on Friday.

Working ahead. With campus closed and classes canceled on Friday, for some of you this may turn out to be a convenient time to work ahead in the class. Plus, in addition to working ahead, I would like to encourage everybody to be doing some kind of extra credit to build up some extra points. That way if you miss some assignments in the weeks to come, you won't even have to worry about it. If you want to pile up a lot of extra credit at the beginning of the semester, before you get busy in your other classes, that is a great idea! Then, if you end up having to miss some assignments in this class later on, such as during midterms, that won't be a problem.

Week 2 Read and Respond (blog comment) assignment. The Week 2 blog commenting assignment is available now! Make sure you check your groups; there has been a bit of shuffling based on class add/drops. You will probably see the same people you did last time, but check the group listing to make sure. I'll probably keep these same groups for another couple of weeks, and then shuffle things around! :-)

Storybook assignments. If you want to receive comments from me about a Storybook assignment before the weekend, please turn it in by noon on Friday. I always do my best to read and reply on Friday afternoon to all the assignments turned in before noon. If you turn in an assignment on after noon on Friday or on Saturday or Sunday, I'll be updating the list again on Monday. So, on Monday morning, you can check the list of assignments in the Stack and you'll be able to make sure I received your assignment; I'll then start reading through the assignments in the order received to send you back comments. Please do NOT go on to the next Storybook assignment until you get comments back from me about the assignment you have turned in. (So, if you are waiting on my comments on Storybook Week 2, don't go on to the Week 3 Storybook assignment yet; if you are waiting on my comments on Storybook Week 3, don't go on to the Week 4 Storybook assignment yet, etc.)

Refund reminder: Monday is the last day for refund. For those of you who are still deciding whether or not you want to stay in the class, Monday, February 1, is when you need to make that decision. You can still drop on Monday and get a full refund. After Monday, you can drop the class with a W on your transcript, but the university will be keeping your money.

Saturday, January 30: Assassination of Gandhi. On January 30 in 1948, Mohandas Gandhi was assassinated. The image below shows the memorial in New Delhi where Gandhi's body was cremated. Written on the stone you can see what were reportedly Gandhi's last words: "Hey Ram" (Oh Rama!) - his invocation of the god Rama will definitely mean something to the students in the Indian Epics class. Although it is a matter of some controversy as to whether those were Gandhi's last words, here is something he wrote in December 1947, just weeks before his assassination: "In the end it will be as Rama commands me. Thus I dance as He pulls the strings. I am in His hands and so I am experiencing ineffable peace." If you look closely at the photograph, you will see the words written in Devanagari script, gold letters on the black stone, just behind the burning stick of incense: