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Graduate Writing Workshops

Fall 2018 Writing Workshops for Gallatin MA Students

Writing for Graduate School


Thursday, September 13, 12:30-2:00 p.m., Gallatin (1 Washington Pl.) Room 401

This kick-off workshop is designed for incoming MA students, but all Gallatin MA students are welcome to attend. We'll tackle some of the most common dilemmas and questions students confront at the start of and during graduate study. What are the conventions and expectations of academic writing? How do those expectations change (or don't they?) in the context of interdisciplinary work? How does one assess what is a ‘given’ and what needs to be explained in a scholarly essay? What are the standards for research? We'll also provide a variety of models of successful interdisciplinary scholarship. RSVP to Mara de Gennaro.

The Art of Writing Critical Essays

Thursday, October 4, 6:30 -7:30 p.m., Gallatin Room 620

Academic criticism is the art of persuasion through scholarly engagement. Like other genres of writing, it has an audience of readers who will feel bored or confused or alienated if what they are reading is not structured in response to their desires for clarity, variety, surprise, and suspense. With this in mind, we will discuss strategies for conceiving and developing persuasive arguments, especially ones appropriate for masters theses and seminar papers. RSVP to Mara de Gennaro.

Using Sources

Thursday, October 18, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Gallatin Room 620

In this workshop we'll tackle some of the basic questions for how and why we cite in graduate school writing: Which style makes the most sense to employ in a course paper or thesis? What is the appropriate citation for paraphrasing versus using direct quotes? How does one cite an author citing another source? How might a certain framing of the citation emphasize your argument? Be sure to bring draft work or past writing to raise questions regarding your own use of sources. RSVP to Marnie Brady.


Writing for Close Reading

Thursday, November 8, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Gallatin Room 620

What are the requirements of reviewing a text to demonstrate both comprehension and criticism? How might writing annotated bibliographies help to review the literature? This workshop will provide helpful tools for reading closely to write analytic reviews that may serve your broader thesis project. RSVP to Marnie Brady.


Being Interdisciplinary


Thursday, November 29, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m., Gallatin Room 620

If a challenge of writing critical essays is establishing a dialogue with published criticism in one’s area of research, then writing interdisciplinary essays more than doubles that challenge: it requires us not only to speak to critics in at least two disciplines, but also to build a way for those critics to speak to each other, across disparate methods and interests. We’ll look at some examples of influential interdisciplinary criticism and consider what they can teach us about writing our own interdisciplinary essays. RSVP to Mara de Gennaro.