English 238 (F 2020) – Schedule

Schedule for English 238 (F 2020):
Critical Infrastructure Studies


Class 1 (Oct. 6, 2020) — Introduction: Thinging

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

CIstudies.org Bibliography: Object and thing studies | Affordance theory


Class 2 (Oct. 13, 2020) — Ethnographical Approaches

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

CIstudies.org Bibliography: Ethnographical approaches


Class 3 (Oct. 20, 2020) — Science Technology Studies (STS) Approaches

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

CIstudies.org Bibliography: STS approaches


Class 4 (Oct. 27, 2020) — Media Infrastructure Approaches

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

CIstudies.org Bibliography: Media infrastructures


Class 5 (Nov. 3, 2020) — Digital Humanities Approaches

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

Compare related approaches, including platform studies and media archaeology.  Example readings:

See also CIstudies.org Bibliography: Digital humanities


Class 6 (Nov. 10, 2019) — [Interim Reports on “Starter Kits” and Blog Post Assignments]

This class will be devoted to interim reports and discussion of the “Starter Kits for Infrastructure Studies” assignment (readings and exhibits assembled by students on infrastructure studies in relation to particular fields or topics). Students will also report on progress toward their research blog posts (or planning for the alternative essay assignment). These “interim reports” can be informal, but students  are welcome to prepare materials to show in advance (e.g., documents, online resources, slide shows). A convenient way for everyone to show things in class will be to share screens over Zoom.

Readings


Class 7 (Nov. 17, 2020) — Social Justice Approaches: (Infra)Structural Racism

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

Compare gender and postcolonial approaches to infrastructure. Example readings:

See also CIstudies.org Bibliography: Social justice | Race & ethnicity | Postcolonial & colonial | Borders & migration | Feminist | Disability & accessibility


Class 8 (Nov. 24, 2020) — “Repair” and “Waste” Approaches

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

CIstudies.org Bibliography: Disaster | Labor & work


Class 9 (Dec. 1, 2020) — The Poetry of Infrastructure

Readings

Related Materials (not required)

CIstudies.org Bibliography:  Poetry.

See also primary and sedondary works on the fiction and art of infrastructure:  CIstudies.org Bibliography:  Fiction | Art and aesthetics


Class 10 (Dec. 8, 2020) — Student Presentations

Presentations of “Starter Kits”

In presenting their “starter kits,” students should give an overview but also focus on one or two highlights.

A Note About Access to Reading Materials For This Course

All readings are online. Paywalled articles can be accessed over the UCSB network (or from off-campus by using the campus Pulse VPN service or the campus Library Proxy Server. You can also try to find open-access versions of paywalled materials using the Unpaywall extension for the Chrome or Firefox browsers. (Advice: It is a good idea to download materials as early as possible in case, for example, PDFs that are currently available open-access, on the open net, or through a UCSB Library digital database subscription later become inaccessible.)

Because so many readings are online (an increasingly prevalent trend in college courses), students will need to develop a method or workflow for themselves that optimizes their ability to study the materials. While everyone has their own personal preferences and technical constraints, the following guide includes suggested options for handling online materials:

Guide to Downloading and Managing Online Readings