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Re: Documenting Tolkien university classes

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  • Michael Martinez
    ... useful ... Well, I was hoping to get the site into better shape before posting the URL here, because it still needs a lot of work. The disclaimer is
    Message 1 of 9 , Mar 16, 2006
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      --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Croft, Janet B." <jbcroft@...> wrote:
      >
      >
      > Mike wrote: Jane Chance pointed out to me that this list will be
      useful
      > to people who need to project potential sales to students for books on
      > Tolkien.
      >
      > Good point! I've passed your original request on to two people I know
      > of who teach Tolkien-centered classes here on campus. There's another
      > one on folklore that includes a lot of Tolkien but isn't centered on
      > Tolkien, and I don't know if that would be of any interest to you.

      Well, I was hoping to get the site into better shape before posting the
      URL here, because it still needs a lot of work. The disclaimer is
      probably something that should be reworded into a less colorful
      statement, for example.

      But the new site is called Tolkien Studies on the Web. The domain is:

      http://www.tolkien-studies.com/

      The goal of this site is to provide resources for people who are
      studying the works of Tolkien. It's not directed at the academic
      community. It's directed at the online community. But I have long
      been aware of many academic Web sites that offer considerable
      information on Tolkien studies. I felt it would be appropriate to
      include the listing of schools that provide information on their
      Tolkien-related courses.

      The class listing is located at:

      http://www.tolkien-studies.com/tolkien-classes/

      The list right now is not very well organized. As I mentioned in my
      previous reply to Larry, I have compiled several hundred URLs that I
      have to go through. I am pretty sure I will be dropping the lengthy
      descriptions and excerpts that I've included so far. More than likely,
      the page will be broken up into sub-pages by discipline or by region.
      Eventually, I'll organize the listings alphabetically by school.

      But you can get an idea of what types of URLs I am seeking from the
      ones already published.

      I am not vetting these classes beyond the criteria I have already
      disclosed. If an institution has added a class with substantial
      Tolkien material or interest to its curriculum, that's good enough for
      me. I've sat on a university curriculum committee and I have an idea
      of what's involved in getting a class approved.

      This is not a political list in any sense. Other portions of the
      project apply some standards to selecting Web sites that may ruffle a
      few feathers, but no one in the academic community needs to be
      concerned about being excluded from this list on the basis of who they
      are, what books they have published, or whether they and I ever agree
      on anything.

      Thanks again to everyone for their help.

      --
      Michael Martinez
      "Cuando Maria canta, canta para mí"
      http://www.michael-martinez.com/
      http://michael-martinez.blogspot.com/
    • Larry Swain
      ... The point of my last email was to point out that by restricting your list to only materials accessible via the web, you ll be leaving out a whole lot of
      Message 2 of 9 , Mar 17, 2006
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        >
        >
        > No one's class will be excluded provided there is a publicly
        > accessible page which describes the course and its study materials.

        The point of my last email was to point out that by restricting your list to only materials accessible via the web, you'll be leaving out a whole lot of Tolkien courses being taught out there, because of programs like Blackboard. You could make wider appeals for syllabi and information and place those on your own server. Just a suggestion.

        ANd again, a worthy project, so nice job!

        Larry Swain




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      • Michael Martinez
        ... materials. ... I appreciate the suggestion, Larry. My partner does sysadmin work for a university, so I ve heard of Blackboard and understood what you
        Message 3 of 9 , Mar 17, 2006
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          --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Larry Swain" <theswain@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          > >
          > >
          > > No one's class will be excluded provided there is a publicly
          > > accessible page which describes the course and its study
          materials.
          >
          > The point of my last email was to point out that by restricting
          > your list to only materials accessible via the web, you'll be
          > leaving out a whole lot of Tolkien courses being taught out there,
          > because of programs like Blackboard. You could make wider appeals
          > for syllabi and information and place those on your own server.
          > Just a suggestion.

          I appreciate the suggestion, Larry. My partner does sysadmin work
          for a university, so I've heard of Blackboard and understood what
          you were saying.

          For now, the purpose of the Web site is to direct people interested
          in studying Middle-earth through Internet resources to a broad
          selection of reference sites. The academic pages with course
          information and syllabi are a secondary tier of resources.

          However, now that several professors have mentioned the value they
          could derive from an extensive listing of university courses, I
          appreciate the need and will do my best to address it. I've already
          redesigned the page and will probably add a second list just of
          schools which offer courses but don't make any information publicly
          available.

          I may also, should I keep my energy level on this project going,
          create a directory of professors/instructors who have published
          books and articles about Tolkien. But then again, I may not. That
          is far more ambitious than I originally planned.

          > ANd again, a worthy project, so nice job!

          Thank you. My goal is to produce a large resource at the site by
          the end of the year. This is by no means a 1-week project.

          For example, I've come across several university Web sites that
          discuss Tolkien Studies institutes, journals, and special programs
          I've never heard of before. Again, that's outside the scope
          of "Tolkien Studies on the Web", but I hate to just leave that
          information buried amid a huge list of URLs I have to sift through.

          So, assuming I don't run out of steam before I reach that point, I
          may compile another directory of these types of special academic
          resources.

          I thought I knew what I was getting into, but it's turning out to be
          a pretty big iceberg.

          --
          Michael Martinez
          "Cuando Maria canta, canta para mí"
          http://www.michael-martinez.com/
          http://michael-martinez.blogspot.com/
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