May 2 2019: ITW Editing Workshop

From “The Nature of Dystopian Literature”

In her novel ​Always Coming Home,​ Ursula Le Guin created two different stories in one book, but really all have the same meaning. This book is post-apocalyptic meaning society has basically started over and no characters really remember life before the apocalypse, it is only stories to them. This is effective because humans are having to start over, learning how to adapt to nature and what is around them. In Part One, she explores the story of a girl named Stone Telling who moves around with her family a lot. Through the story of Stone Telling, Le Guin touches upon the subject of how humans would adapt if they are forced to. Stone Telling had situations to figure out on her own that no kid should deal with on her own. Early on in the novel, it is clear that Stone Telling is not wealthy and they are forced to move around a lot. With her moving around she explains both places she travels in detail. The readers learn the difference between the Kesh people and the Condor, who are also referred to as the Dayao.​ In the second part of the novel, Le Guin goes in depth with two different cultures of people. With these different groups, readers can explore the difference between a “wild” group and a group more civilized. ​Stone Telling parents were from two different groups of people. Her mother was Kesh and her father was Condor. These two different groups carry themselves completely different, each having their own rules and beliefs. The Kesh people seemed to be more described as peaceful and “go with the flow”. While the Condor, seem to have more of a militarized and more controlled way of living. This is important when describing how dystopian literature plays a role in warning readers about the future. Ursula Le Guin uses these two different groups of people and the narration of Stone Telling to make a statement about human nature and it shows the importance of dystopian literature.

From “How a Nature Retreat is so Therapeutic”

Another example of someone resorting to the wild is shown in Doug Peacock’s memoir Walking it Off. Peacock, now 63, is a Vietnam vet, a committed environmentalist, and even something of a misfit loner. Fresh from war, Doug met environmentalist Edward Abby in the late 1960s through a mutual friend. The two formed a fast bond, prowling the Southwest desert and Alaska together for about 20 years. When Abbey died in 1989, Peacock was there, wrapping his mentor’s body in a sleeping bag and laying him to rest among the scrub brush of the Arizona desert. From this tragic event emerged Peacock’s Walking it Off which recounts several solo backcountry trips the author took in the early ’90s. The book centers around a particularly fateful experience in Nepal where he nearly bled to death at high altitude. He says that Vietnam and American wilderness have shaped his life. After he returned from Vietnam he felt really out of sorts and couldn’t talk to anyone so he went to the one place he felt comfortable, the woods. In one of Peacock’s books titled Grizzly Years, he explains the concept of wild:

The whole concept of ‘wild’ was decidedly European, one not shared by the original inhabitants of this continent. What we called ‘wilderness’ was to the Indian a homeland, ‘abiding loveliness’ in Salish or Piegan. The land was not something to be feared or conquered, and ‘wildlife’ were neither wild nor alien; they were relatives. (Peacock 185)

In this quote, Peacock is trying to say that us humans have a natural connection with the wilderness and wildlife.

From “Drugs: The Alternative Perspective”

The most common uses of medical marijuana include reduced vomiting and nausea from cancer chemotherapy, appetite stimulation for HIV patients suffering from wasting syndrome, lowering intraocular pressure in glaucoma, prevents muscles cramps and seizures, to alleviate phantom limb pain, menstrual cramps, and many other types of chronic pain. Harvard Professor Stephen Jay Gould used cannabis during his chemotherapy and said “When I started intravenous chemotherapy, absolutely nothing worked at all… marijuana worked like a charm… was the greatest boost I received in all my year of treatment, and surely had a most important effect upon my eventual cure” (Gahlinger, 326)

Lists of Works Cited

Works Cited

Dyck, Erika. Psychedelic Psychiatry: LSD from Clinic to Campus. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins UP, 2008. Print.

Gahlinger, Paul M. Illegal Drugs: A Complete Guide to Their History, Chemistry, Use and Abuse. New York: Plume, 2004. Print.

Glausser, Wayne. Cultural Encyclopedia of LSD. N.p.: n.p., 2011. Print.

Mosher, Clayton James., and Scott Akins. Drugs and Drug Policy: The Control of Consciousness Alteration. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2014. Print.

Works Cited:

– Knoblauch, Jessica A. “Grizzlies ‘Saved His Life’ and Now He Fights To Save

Theirs.” Earthjustice, Earthjustice, 13 Sept. 2018,


– Arvay, Clemens G. “How I Became a Biophiliac.” Clemens G. Arvay Biologist and

Author, Clemens G. Arvay,

– Bollier, David. “The Man Who Quit Money.” The Man Who Quit Money | David


– Peacock, Doug. Grizzly Years: In Search of the American Wilderness. Henry Holt

and Company,1996.

– Krakauer, Jon, and David Vann. Into the Wild. Picador, 2018.

– Strayed, Cheryl. Wild. Piemme, 2017.

– Nelson, Richard K. The Island Within. Vintage, 1991.

– Worrall, Simon. “Alex Honnold Isn’t Fearless-He Just Accepts Death.” National

Geographic, National Geographic Society, 11 Sept.2018, enturengbooktalk/.

– Roorda, Randall. Dramas of Solitude: Narratives of Retreat in American Nature

Writing. State University of New York Press, 1998.

Works Cited

Dowsley, Martha. “The Value of a Polar Bear: Evaluating the Role of a Multiple-Use Resource in the Nunavut Mixed Economy.” Arctic Anthropology, vol. 47, no. 1, 2010, pp. 39-56. JSTOR,

 “U.S.-Russia Polar Bear Agreement.” The American Journal of International Law, vol. 97, no. 1, Jan. 2003, pp. 192-193. JSTOR,

Nelson, Ralph A., et al. “Behavior, Biochemistry, and Hibernation in Black, Grizzly, and Polar Bears.” Bears: Their Biology and Management, vol. 5, 1983, pp. 284–290. JSTOR,

Robbins, Charles T., et al. “Hibernation and Seasonal Fasting in Bears: the Energetic Costs and Consequences for Polar Bears.” Journal of Mammalogy, vol. 93, no. 6, 2012, pp. 1493–1503. JSTOR,

Watts, P. D., et al. “Standard Metabolic Rate of Polar Bears under Simulated Denning Conditions.” Physiological Zoology, vol. 60, no. 6, 1987, pp. 687–691. JSTOR,

Thursday April 25

Revision Workshop: Language Competence, Grammar and Etiquette, Writing with Style

From Social Networking to Productive Classroom Work: Special Technology for Special Children

Of course, with every technological advancement there are downfalls, but I think it is of the utmost importance for people to understand what technology is doing for these children. The positive benefits outweigh the negative when it comes to technology in special education classrooms. The purpose of my paper is to inform people of the more positive, unknown, benefits to technology and its advancement. Acknowledging the fact that there are negative affects such as distraction and decreasing social skills when it comes to technology, I try to show how the positives outweigh the negative. Exploring many different kinds of assistive technologies and their purposes, I hope to help the readers become more optimistic. My paper is essentially an informative essay, but still touching on the opposing arguments.

The Nature Writing of John McPhee

From the beginning of his career to this most recent work, nature for John McPhee is a place where people are. McPhee’s documentation of the ways humans carry out their lives has broadened our thinking about nature and the role of humans in the more-than-human world. His portraits and place-based profiles of people will consistently challenge the reader to think in regional terms; his astonishing number of regional studies, moreover, will continue to offer readers an indispensable repository of human attitudes toward the natural environment. The more recent books about geology, finally, will continue to invite readers to think about the natural world in unfamiliar, if potentially enabling ways. For Bailey, McPhee’s later work is most importantly “about nature seen as completely as we can see it.” The consequences of McPhee’s project as a nature writer, from this point of view, are significant. McPhee’s essential lesson as a nature writer is that our understanding of the natural world is something we must continue to shape as we broaden and deepen our inherently limited human perspectives.

Overuse Injuries in Youth Sports

Youth sports can be damaging to children (Counter: Youth sports are valuable in many ways; Counter to counter: Youth sports can be made more valuable if necessary precautions are taken) My research paper is written on the rising epidemic of overuse injuries in youth sports.  My paper is not written to undermine youth sports programs in the United States, but it is instead written to enhance the program.  The point of my paper is to emphasis the importance of educating the young athletes, parents, and coaches.  While there are many positive rewards and benefits to youth sports, there is definitely room for growth in the programs and improvement of the safety of the programs.  With more than half of the youth sport injuries being in the category of overuse injuries, there needs to be more education available to prevent these statistics from growing.  My paper also discusses treatment for already sustained overuse injuries. Youth sports could be made safer and the programs better if there is more knowledge.  There should be more knowledge and more education available for parents, players, and coaches.  While programs today do have education and certification programs, not all sports have these requirements, and ones that do have certification program requirements could be more in depth.

Drugs: The Alternate Perspective

It wasn’t until the great depression of 1929 that cannabis was really labeled as a bad drug, and it was mostly because people in the United States were racist. They associated marijuana use with illegal Mexican immigrants and criminal activity. The spreading use of marijuana was also blamed on immigrants from India, a culture where marijuana use is more accepted. Harry J. Anslinger, the commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics from 1930-1962 tried his hardest to spread mass hysteria about the use off marijuana and immigration issues, but that force alone wasn’t powerful enough to ban it’s use. He was also a hypocrite because he supplied his friend with illegal morphine and ended up getting addicted himself.  Even though cannabis was known to be the best source of raw material to make paper with, newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst was heavily invested in northwestern forest paper mills. To protect this industry, Hearst wanted cannabis to be illegal. He told his publishers to change the word marihuana to the Mexican spelling that we know today, marijuana. This was to make the plant seem like a scary foreign drug to people, and to scare them away from it. He also took any opportunity he had to categorize it as “dangerous”.  His efforts proved to be enough in 1937 when the Marihuana Tax Act was passed, which meant that every time someone bought or sold cannabis, a tax of one hundred dollars per ounce was in place. Failure to pay the tax was a federal offense, and since they did not give away many stamps, it was essentially illegal. It was like this until 1970 when the tax act was overridden by the controlled substances act of 1970 (Gahlinger, 62).

How a Nature Retreat is so Therapeutic

Another way in which someone can obtain this “biophilic craving” is through hunting. Cultural anthropologist and creative nonfiction writer Richard Nelson has work that focuses on humans relationships to the natural world. In the book The Island Within written by Richard Nelson, there are deer hunts from the beginning up until the end. Venison is what supplies him and his family with the meat that they need. Nelson’s main purpose in writing this book is to offer an alternative perspective on living. In his work among Alaskan native peoples, anthropologist Nelson came to admire their relationship with the environment and sought to emulate it which can be seen here in his description of the forest:

I’ve often thought of the forest as a living cathedral, but this might diminish what it ruly is. If I have understood Koyukon teachings, the forest is not merely an expression or representation of sacredness, nor a place to invoke the sacred; the forest is sacredness itself. Nature is not merely created by God; nature is God. (Nelson 52)

Thus his exploration of an island off the Pacific Northwest coast is a search for a way of belonging to its natural community, to be not only an observer but a participant in its life cycle. Nelson tramps through the forest and muskeg with his dog; he roams the beaches and chances solitary surfing. His numerous encounters with wildlife are rewarding, both for him and for the reader–here are falcons and bald eagles, brown bears, otters, seals, whales, and spawning salmon. Living in an isolated area, Nelson depends on hunting and fishing for food, but he accords each animal he kills, respect taught to him by the Alaskan natives.

What is Climate Change Doing to US?

According to the introduction of Climate and Health Assessment it states that “the Earth is warming due to elevated concentrations of greenhouse gases, and will continue to warm in the future.” The temperature has increased by 1.3 degrees fahrenheit to 1.9 degrees fahrenheit. US temperature are projected to increase by 3 degrees fahrenheit to 10 degrees fahrenheit by the end of this century. This all depends on how rapidly we keep hurting our planet by burning things that are putting greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere. These temperature changes have a direct affect on human health. When there are days that are hotter or colder than average season temperatures this increases the level of illness or death. These different temperatures affect human health because it compromises the bodies ability to regulate its internal temperature. Loss of internal temperature control can lead to many different illnesses such as, cascade illnesses, heat cramps, heat exhaustion, heatstroke, and hyperthermia. These changes in temperature can also worsen conditions that a person might already have, such as a cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, and many others. Also with the warming of the planet it is making it easier for insects and rodents that carry harmful diseases survive longer and survive everywhere. Mosquitos and ticks carry the west nile or lymes disease. These insects are able to survive everywhere because of the Earth being warmer. These will affect us if we get bit by one of these insects and we will become sick and be in the hospital from these two serious illnesses. Another way climate change affects human health is how it affects the air we breathe around us both inside and outside. Climate change is influencing the temperature outside, cloudiness, humidity, the frequency and intensity of precipitation and so much more. All of these that I just listed can influence air quality. The poor air quality is negatively affecting human respiratory systems and cardiovascular systems. Ground level ozone has a giant effect on human health. Fine particle pollution has also been linked to greater health consequences through cardiovascular and respiratory effects.

Thursday April 11

A Writing Process Self Assessment: moving from draft one to draft two

In preparation for our individual conversations next week, please write a full and thoughtful response to each of the ten prompts below. Once you have completed your self-assessment, open the Google Folder and deposit the self assessment using the document title convention as follows: yourlastname.selfassessment.

Describe (using examples from your two drafts) the primary changes you have made to your essay.

Write a paragraph or two about what you have learned in this class (or another class if you are talking about writing in that class) this semester that has led you to make decisions in the form or the structure of your essay

Write a paragraph or two about the written feedback you have received on your first draft that led to changes in your second draft. Be very specific and quote from the feedback and/or the first version of your essay.

Our writing workshops during the past two weeks have focused on a number of subjects. Write a response to each of the following questions

What is the idea at the center of your essay?

What have you learned about your area of interest and how exactly is what you have learned relevant or of interest to others? This is a question that asks you the larger question, “So What?” How might what you are doing in the essay matter to a reader?

Are you writing well from your sources? Describe what you have learned about quotations and give a minimum of two examples from your essay that demonstrate examples of putting what you have learned into practice?

Where does your essay begin? What choice have you made about your opening and why?

Where does your essay end? What choice(s) have you made about your closing strategy and why?

Where do you think you will go with this essay in the next few weeks? Do you have a sense that you need to more thinking in one area or another? What kind of sources or what information do you feel you need to access to develop your thinking and writing?

Thursday March 28

On Thursday March 28 the First Version of Essay is due. Please bring a hard copy of your essay to class. (see details below).

Please uses the bullet list below as a checklist for your essay. If you have any questions at all, email me, or make an appointment to see me on Wednesday or Thursday.

Here is the checklist:

  • Your essay will most likely be between five and ten pages in length, not including the Works Cited page. Don’t worry if it is a couple of pages more or less

  • Follow standard manuscript format. Double space the text and include page numbers

  • The essay should have a well-considered title. Look at titles of the sources you are using for inspiration

  • Use the materials you developed in class last week in your opening paragraph or opening section, if you wish: 1) the sentence explanation, 2) the paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject, and 3) what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject. 

  • IMPORTANT: In the first version of your essay, you will include sentences (in boldface type) that explain what you are doing (or trying to do), where you are having trouble, where you might need to do more research. This meta-commentarywill appear in your text and will be useful for me as I prepare my written feedback for you

Here are some examples of the kinds of explanations you might include:

• I like my title. What do you think? I tried to use a more descriptive title but I like this one the best so far. It may change when I read the books I have not read carefully yet. 

• This is where my introduction ends. Can I have two paragraphs before my claim?

• My statement of purpose is still mostly a description of the findings or scientific consensus on the magnitude of biodiversity loss since 1950. Should I be referring to E.O. Wilson’s online Encyclopedia of Life database in this paragraph? 

• This paragraph is where I am trying to bring in the counterargument. My question: is two sources enough?

• In my research I have found a lot of information and discussion of the biophilia hypothesis. But I have not included it in the paper. This hypothesis interests me. I read a book of essays that responds to the book written by E.O. Wilson. Should I include this information? Where should I include it?

• Is this the correct format for a block quotation? I have worked hard on the introductory or signal phrase introducing the quotation. And I have offered my commentary on the language I am including in the block. What do you think? 

• This paragraph is mostly paraphrased from the psychologist Oliver Sacks, but I also read about similar findings in an article that he cited in his book. Should I include the page numbers? How do I show that Sacks is citing an earlier case study? 

• How do I use dashes? Is this right? I like how writers use dashes but I am not sure.

• I’m still working on the conclusion. Here are two ways to bring my paper to an end.

• This citation on the Works Cited page has a primary author and five co-authors. How do I cite this kind of an essay? Also, what exactly do I do when I am including more than one work by the same author and one of them is a co-edited book?

These boldface comments, inserted in your text, begin the dialogue we will be having about your work in the coming five weeks. My comments will likely reference your comments.


One paragraph Explanation

How do authors use dystopian literature to portray human nature? Always Coming Home by Ursula Le Guin

One Sentence Explanation

The portrayal of human nature in the dystopian literature drama specifically and going into certain authors and their opinions, also how they use the genre as a deeper meaning explaining human nature in the real world.

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

Ursula Le Guin has done interviews and wrote essays about the importance of the dystopian literature genre, which has drawn in my attention more and is expanding my knowledge on the importance of this genre.

How she uses her characters, plot and overall storyline that prove examples of human nature and if humans are naturally good or evil. Books with the genre of dystopian literature that can be a guideline in how to set up the essay.

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

Not everyone believes human nature is a thing. Many believe humans have to learn through someone or something to become a certain way and are not born a certain way. However, by using dystopian literature to research human nature, it can be a simpler way to put into terms, for people that don’t necessarily understand what it is.


One paragraph Explanation

My essay is going to reveal various examples of people that have ventured into the

wilderness with a goal of getting something out of it. . . .

What is interesting though is the wide range of the reasons we humans have for doing so.

One Sentence Explanation

My essay will discuss the different ways in which people can find themselves in

nature, some cases which are more extreme than others.

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

What I have learned so far after doing research on my subject is that there are

hundreds of different ways that people have used nature to find a sense of ultimate

freedom. . . .Doug Peacocks book Walking it Off: a Vietnam veteran that committed himself to be an environmentalist because he wants to save the Grizzlies. This example of someone

going into the wild taught me a lot because it showed that people don’t only do this for

themselves but may do it in consideration of animals

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

Something about my subject that was less familiar to me was what draws people to

nature when it is considered a more extreme case. I was unsure of why someone like

Chris McCandless or Doug Peacock were able to find a sense of freedom in nature

although there are so many obstacles to overcome. I have gotten more familiar with why

people like them choose to do this and it has to do with the biophilia effect. The term

biophilia effect is any of a number of positive impacts experienced when this affinity is

evoked through sensory experience of nature.


One paragraph Explanation

What seems like endless consumer consumption needs to be faced with the reality; there is no place to put garbage.  

One Sentence Explanation

The amount garbage the population produces along with the effects our rubbish has on the environment, with the final intent to inform the reader of solutions to this problem.

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

Consumers, us, are the cause of enormous amounts of waste, which includes single-use plastics, electronics, diapers, excess packaging and even machines. The more material goods one has, the higher social class they are in and the wealthier they are. There is no end goal, producers want the economy to continuously grow and consumers will keep buying products. We cannot keep consuming the way we are in order to put an end to this trash issue

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

The solutions individuals are making, and can make are more talked about and known, but what we are doing as a whole to come up with a solution is a little unclear. There are a few ideas that have been followed through such as burning it, burying it and even recycling.


One paragraph Explanation

A description of cultural effects (climate change) on a natural species (polar bear) and its habitat.

One Sentence Explanation

To describe the anatomy, evolution, and behavior of polar bears and how a changing climate might affect the world’s view of them.

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

Polar bears share similar hibernation and metabolism habits with brown and grizzly bears, however there are minor differences in their survival mechanisms that may pertain to environmental adaptation. The species’ behavior is somewhat unique among mammals; polar bears are not often raised in groups. Due to their protective nature, mother bears do not easily tolerate other polar bears dwelling within a few hundred meters of their (notably few, often around 1-3) cubs compared to when they travel alone. As for human relations, polar bears are a subject of economic and social difficulty in Northern Canada. There has been a multi-decade-old debate as to how to balance Inuit peoples’ cultural hunting practices, sports hunting, and the conservation of an endangered species

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

Polar bears, as an endangered species in an endangered terrain, need better protection from an ethical and conservationist standpoint. However, humanity incorrectly underestimates them. These creatures have characteristics and behaviorisms that are unique to every other species on the planet, including even their southern brown, grizzly, and black bear relatives. In only deeming polar bears as victims, humanity ignores their special qualities and habits. Polar bears are in need of protection, though not from standpoint of pity, but rather one of education.


One paragraph Explanation

My final paper is about climate change and the effects it has on people throughout

the world. It is going to explain how harmful climate change is and how if we do not

doing something fast this world as we know it can take a turn for the worst. I am going

to explore how climate change is hurting people not only in a physical way but in a way

that it is affecting there daily life. Climate change is making it harder for people to live.I

am going to talk about the way in which it is affecting people. This paper is to inform

people that maybe the stuff they are doing around the world are not affecting them yet

but they are affecting other people around the world in a dramatic way.

One Sentence Explanation

the effects climate change has on the people of the world not only physically but it affecting their lives as a whole and how it is very harmful to us

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

climate change is not only affecting people around the world physically with their land and there food, and health issues. But it is also affecting home life and financial needs and many other things. I have learned that maybe it is not affecting me at this moment in time, but some of my actions that I do in my everyday life are affecting a countless amount of other people around the world. I also learned that I may not think I am being affected by climate change but in reality everyone in the world is being affected by it some way or another.

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

People do not think about how it affects other people around the world. People just ignore it

because they think it is not really happening or they think it is a myth.

One paragraph Explanation

One Sentence Explanation

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

One paragraph Explanation

One Sentence Explanation

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?

One paragraph Explanation

One Sentence Explanation

One paragraph that describes in the most specific way possible what you have learned so far about your subject

Using what you have learned about your subject, what can you now say that is less familiar, less obvious, less known, about your subject?