Category Archives: Assignments

The rest of this week, plus next Monday

As promised, here’s the roadmap for where we’re headed the next few days.

  • Wednesday, April 22: Introduction to Václav Havel.
  • Friday, April 24: We won’t meet as a class. However, everyone is to submit at least one question about Havel’s “The Power of the Powerless.” Use the same link you’ve used to submit discussion questions. The form will demand two questions, even though you only need to submit one; just enter random text into the second question box to keep the form happy. Please be sure you submit your question by 5:00 pm on Friday, April 24.
  • Monday, April 27: Discussion of Havel’s “The Power of the Powerless.”

A Note About Friday

As you’ll recall from reading the course calendar, we will not meet on Friday because I will be at a conference.

I strongly encourage you to use the time to do one of the following for this course:

  • Work on the essay that is due on April 17.
  • Work on the annotated bibliography entry or article review (whichever one you haven’t already done) that is due on April 24.
  • Engage in conversation in the comments section of one of our discussion question posts.

I’ll look forward to seeing you on Monday, when we’ll discuss the Schwartzberg article.

Monday’s reading

This is just a reminder to read Chs. 1-4 of Machiavelli’s The Prince for Monday. There are also discussion questions due in preparation for that class, so please double-check the assignment sheet to see if you’re up.

I hope you’ve all enjoyed a good break!

Discussion questions and commenting

Starting next week, I’ll ask you to take turns submitting discussion questions to get us started each day. I’ll also ask that you respond to one another’s questions via comments on the posts containing your colleagues’ discussion questions.

Details of the assignment, including a schedule for posting discussion questions, are in this assignment sheet (you’ll need to log in with your Saint Mary’s email address and password to access it).

Prep for Wednesday: Zotero

Prior to Wednesday’s class, please attempt to do the following:

  1. Download and install Zotero on your computer or flash drive (see below).
  2. Create an account at Zotero using your address.

If you’re able to bring your computer with you to class on Wednesday, you’ll find it helpful.

Downloading and installing Zotero:

(Click on any image below to see a larger version of it.)

Your installation process will differ a bit depending on what kind of computer you’re using.

  • If you’re using Windows or OS X:
    • Go to the Zotero home page, and click on the large “Download Now” button.Zotero home page
    • I recommend choosing Zotero Standalone, unless you use a Chromebook (see more on that below). Click on the download button, and use the downloaded file to install the program as you would any other (i.e., double-clicking on the .exe or .dmg file and following any resulting instructions).Zotero download and installationBe sure you also install the Zotero connector for the browser you use most often. Please note that Zotero will not work with Internet Explorer!
  • If you’re using Linux (here, too, be sure you install the Zotero connector for your favorite browser):You should be presented with a download link, and you can always download the installer file and double-click on it. I’ve generally found it faster and easier, however, to just open a terminal and run the following commands (this assumes you’re using Ubuntu, Mint, Debian, etc.):
    • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:smathot/cogscinl
    • sudo apt-get update
    • sudo apt-get install zotero-standalone
  • If you’re using a Chromebook:
    Chromebooks are solid, useful devices, especially when so much of our digital life is stored in the cloud, anyway. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to install software on a Chromebook, so you won’t be able to run Zotero on your own machine. Instead, you’ll need to do the following:

    • Acquire a flash drive. It needn’t be of particularly high capacity; 4 – 8 GB is just fine.
    • Go to one of the computer labs on campus and log on to one of the Windows computers.
    • Open a browser, and go to Portableapps.comPortableApps home page Click on “Apps” in the page’s top menu.
    • On the page that opens, scroll down to the “Internet” section, and find “Mozilla Firefox, Portable Edition.” List of portable Internet apps Click the link to download the installer file, and make a note of where you save it.
    • Insert your flash drive into one of the computer’s USB ports. Make a note of what drive letter the computer assigns to it.
    • Find the installer file you downloaded, double-click it, and follow the instructions. When it asks where to install Firefox, direct it to the drive letter corresponding to your flash drive.
    • Open your flash drive, find the “FirefoxPortable” application, and double-click on it.
    • In FirefoxPortable, go to the Zotero download page.Download Zotero for FirefoxClick on the “Zotero 4.0 for Firefox” button. You may be asked whether you want to allow to install software on your computer. Yes, you do. You’re likely to get another warning telling you you should only install add-ons from trusted authors. is a trusted author, so go ahead and allow the installation. Restart Firefox when prompted to do so.
    • You should now see a large “Z” near the top of your Firefox toolbar. Zotero in Firefox Clicking on it will open the Zotero pane shown in this image.

Creating an account

Creating an account is simple. Just click the register link on Zotero’s home page, and follow the instructions.