Advisement for PTW Students

For all PTW students in the class, I need to meet with you individually for advisement. Separately from the sign-in sheet, I’m going to send around an advisement sign-up sheet for PTW students.

So, this is what I’m going to ask PTW students to do: Please follow this order of operations when you signup for a time so that we can accommodate everyone’s schedules. 1) If you are available to meet before class, please sign up for a before class time. 2) If you cannot meet during that time, please sign up for an after class time. 3) If you cannot meet during that, please sign up for an in-class time. 4) If you cannot meet during any of the remaining available times on the sign-up sheet, write your name and City Tech email address at the bottom of the sheet so that I can get in touch with you with an alternative time.

Our advisement meeting will be more efficient and productive if you bring a copy of your transcript or DegreeWorks printed out. Also, take a look at the PTW degree checklist here and fill it out according to what you have completed on your transcript.

Also, it is helpful to take a look at the City Tech College Catalog’s chapter on the English department and the course requirements for the degree before we meet. You can find it here.

For everyone: Learn everything that you can about your major and the required coursework. Take your required ID class as soon as possible. If your major requires an internship, please talk to the internship coordinator as soon as possible to find out what all is involved. The internship coordinator for the PTW degree is Professor Renata Ferdinand.


Extra Credit Opportunity: Talk on Internet Metaphors and Arabic Language

If you attend this talk and write a 250-word summary of what you learned, you can earn some extra credit in the class. Even if you don’t need the extra credit, this talk is recommended, because Dr. Lachheb will discuss a topic relevant to many of your research projects. You may cite quotes from his talk in your paper. Bring paper and pen to take good notes!

A Talk by Dr. Khalid Lachheb

Internet Metaphors and Arabic Translation

In his talk, Khalid Lachheb draws on cognitive semantic studies to explore the cognitive dimension of metaphor and the metaphoric structure of internet terminology. This presentation also sketches recent terminological studies that analyze the role of metaphor in scientific communication. Dr. Lachheb will suggest strategies and guidelines to translate metaphorical internet terms from English to Arabic, taking into consideration pioneering work on metaphor in general language.

1:00pm, Thursday March 15, 2018 in Room A631

Faculty, Students and Staff are invited. Refreshments served.

Story on Know Your Meme, Based in Williamsburg

The Verge has a story by Kaitlyn Tiffany about Know Your Meme, a service that tracks online memes. I didn’t realize that they are based out of Williamsburg in Brooklyn. I think this piece might be informative to everyone in the class, but those of you working on social media’s effect on language or memes in general should definitely read it.

After Class Writing: Haraway’s “A Cyborg Manifesto”

Before our next class, post a comment to this blog post with at least 250 words summarizing your reading and today’s lecture on Donna Haraway’s “The Cyborg Manifesto.”

For our next class: Email your research project proposal to me as a Word docx file attachment before class. Read N. Katherine Hayles’ “Toward Embodied Virtuality.” We will begin class with a review of the previous readings so make sure you’re there on-time to get those notes before we move on to discussing Hayles’ work.

Follow-Up to Nicholas Wade Reading

While the reading that we discussed by Nicholas Wade does not tread into these waters, Ronald Hinds offers us something very important to consider about his other work:

Attached here, in addition to my comment itself, is an update on Nicholas Wade, who, in his article of July 15, 2003 in the Science Times, of the New York Times, “Early Voices: The Leap of Language,” makes reference to Dr. Pinker and acknowledges his position that language is the product of natural selection. However, in a letter appearing in the New York Times on August 8, 2014, over 100 signatories assert, after thanking David Dobbs’s (David Dobbs writes for the New York Times Magazine, Play, Scientific American Mind, Slate, Audubon, and other publications) for his review of Nicholas Wade’s “A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History,” state that Wade “juxtaposes an incomplete and inaccurate account of research on human genetic differences with speculation that recent natural selection has led to worldwide differences in I.Q. test results.” These signatories soundly reject “Mr. Wade’s implication that their findings substantiate his guesswork.”

Learn more about Nicolas Wade’s A Troublesome Inheritance here.

David Dobb’s rebuttal to Wade’s book can be found here.

The letter Ronald references above can be found here.

Stephen Jay Gould wrote an excellent book describing the history of race and biological determinism titled The Mismeasure of Man. It was updated before his death with two new chapters discrediting Herrnstein and Murray’s The Bell Curve, a popular book that rehashed many of these tired and repudiated arguments mirrored in Wade’s book.

After-Class Writing: Derrida’s “Linguistics and Grammatology”

Following today’s class, write at least 250 words summarizing the material that we covered on Derrida’s “Linguistics and Grammatology.” Some of your discoveries in the text and connections to other readings made during discussion would be very useful for your summaries, too. Post your summary as a comment to this blog post before our next class.

Also, thanks to everyone attending class today. We had 100% attendance!

Opportunity: Literary Arts Festival

This is a good writing contest to consider submitting your writing to–done in a class or on your own. If you win an award or recognized in some way (e.g., “runner up”), you can include that on a resume or in a portfolio demonstrating that you are a good writer. Having evidence for your writing ability is far better than making empty claims about your ability.

The 2018 Literary Arts Festival Writing Competition is now accepting your literary art!  Guidelines, submission dropboxes, and further information about the Festival can be found here: Please note that, this year, you can submit directly to the website.

If you’re still crafting your entry, please note that the competition deadline is Thursday, March 29 at 11:59 pm.

Look out for more info about our main Festival event (April 19), featuring awards, readings, and literary discussion galore.

Please contact Lucas Kwong ( if you have further questions about the Competition.