Monday, September 15

Today is Monday. Week 4 is now over... and Week 5 has begun. Monday morning, until noon, is the grace period if you did not finish any of the Week 4 assignments that were due on Friday or over the weekend. This week's topic in the Myth-Folklore class is the Middle East or India, and in Indian Epics Rama will encounter all kinds of rakshasas while in exile. I hope you will enjoy the readings!

Also... GOOD LUCK with all those applications! As I was reading through the "Famous Last Words" posts (I do read them even if I only comment occasionally), I saw one person after another after another writing about the many applications they are busy filling out. That application process can be very stressful, but also so exciting and hopeful. I wish you all good outcomes for all of your good efforts!!!

Class Procedures and Reminders

Storybook stack. As always on Monday, I will have a HUGE bunch of assignments in the Storybook stack that were turned in over the weekend or on Monday morning. The first thing I will do on Monday morning when I get to work is to update the list of items in the Storybook stack. You can then check the contents of the stack to make sure I received your assignment. This is usually the single busiest week of the semester for me, but I will do my best to get comments back to everyone by the end of the week.

Myth-Folklore Reading. (repeat announcement) Thanks again to everybody for all the great feedback last week, and I've summarized the responses here: Un-Textbook Report for Week 4. It is so useful for me to get this week by week input on how I can keep on improving the Un-Textbook: I really appreciate it! Also, please feel free to make comments and ask questions while you are reading; you can leave comments on the reading pages just like at any Blogger blog post.

Indian Epics Reading. (repeat announcement) Now that you have been exploring the Storybook options, you probably have a good sense of what epic themes are of real interest to you, and that should help in taking notes for your Reading Diary. So, don't get bogged down in summarizing the plot in your Reading Diary; I've already done that in the Reading Guides. Instead, focus on what really grabs your attention while you are doing the reading, keeping an eye out for the topics that interest you the most.

The following items are for fun and exploration:

Writing Humor: Onomatopoeian Empire. Onomatopoeia is a great writing technique but, as you can see in this delightful cartoon by Scott Hillbrun, it is no way to defend an empire!

Mythology Words in English: Today's mythology word in English is PANIC which comes from the name of the Greek god Pan. For details, see this blog post.

Featured Storybook: Tales of the Traveling Cat. Join Duke, the time-traveling cat, as he journeys to ancient Egypt and Japan, and even goes to Arabia, where he meets Muhammad — who mistakes Duke for his beloved cat Muezza.

FREE Kindle eBook: Tales of the Sun or Folklore of Southern India by Georgiana Kingscote and Natesa Sastri. Here is a link to the book at Amazon, and this blog post provides additional information about the contents of the book. This is a wonderful collection of Indian folktales, including the famous story of the brahmin's wife and the loyal mongoose.

Words of Wisdom: Today's proverb poster is A barley corn is better than a diamond to a cock (an English proverb). Details at the Proverb Lab. Roosters cannot eat diamonds after all!

Ramayana Image: Today's Ramayana image is Rama in Exile, together with his wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana.

Monday Event on Campus: You can enjoy Tolkien Trivia AND free pizza thanks to the OU English Club at 6PM in the Gittinger Hall Lounge (details). Find out more about this and other events at the Campus Calendar online.

September 15: Marco Polo. Today, September 15, marks the birthday of the great Italian explorer Marco Polo in the year 1254. Marco Polo together with his father and his uncle were among the first Europeans to travel and live in China (Marco spent almost 20 years in China). After he returned to Europe in 1295, he wrote a marvelous account of his travels, part fact and part fiction, which is known in English as The Travels of Marco Polo (Il Milione in Italian). You can read more about Marco Polo in the detailed article at Wikipedia, which is also the source for this image, showing an illuminated manuscript of Marco Polo's famous account of his travels:

Note: You can page back through older blog posts to see any announcements you might have missed, and you can check out the Twitter stream for information and fun stuff during the day.