Friday, December 16, 2011

Might need some more monks in this syllabus

I have a bit of an academic lull before final papers come in. So I was just doing some planning for spring classes.

I only realize now that I've arranged my workload rather oddly. This fall I've taught a first-year seminar (capped at 15) and two upper-level classes (each with about 12 students each). In the spring I'll be teaching one upper-level class (quite small) and two introductory ones, each of those with 25 students. I think I'm going to be doing a lot more grading in the spring than this fall.

The spring upper-level course is on medieval monasticism. And may be the only time I'll ever teach it, since the enrollment is pretty low. It's such a pleasure to put together a course where I actually have a deep knowledge base. However, I did realize as I put a tentative reading list together that most of the secondary scholarship I included is about nuns. Now, in my course on monasticism, nuns are not going to get just a day or a week on the syllabus, but are going to get integrated into our discussions of every development in monasticism. And most of the primary sources are by and for monks, so men are not going to be neglected. Still, a bit more scholarship on the monks and friars would probably be wise.