University of Central Florida

HUM 3394

Representations of Place and Space

Instructor: Bruce Janz

Term: Fall 2007

Time: Tuesday & Thursday 10:30-11:45

Room: COMM 116 (Communications Building)

Phone: 407-823-2273

Credits: 3

Course Page & Resource Page: http://pegasus.cc.ucf.edu/~janzb/courses/

Section: 0001 Number: 89785

Office Hours: Click here

Office: Department of Philosophy, Psychology Building225

 Email: janzb@mail.ucf.edu

The Fine (But Important) Print

This course will examine different disciplinary approaches to the representation and experience of place and space. We will consider phenomenological, structural, constructivist, and determinist versions of place (and the hybrids between them), the ways in which place is represented and constructed in literature, art, architecture, urban planning and cartography, and the relationships between place, politics, globalization, and identity. We will also discuss the concept of "sense of place", the attachment people feel to particular places, the loss of place, and explore the ways that students succeed or struggle to make sense of their own places.

Required Texts:

  1. Tuan, Yi-Fu. Space and Place: The Perspective of Experience. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1977, 2001.
  2. Cresswell, Tim. Place: A Short Introduction. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2004.
  3. Lippard, Lucy. The Lure of the Local: Senses of Place in a Multicentered Society. W. W. Norton, 1997.
  4. Library reserve readings for HUM 3930.
  5. Web-based readings for HUM 3930.


ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY (20% of final grade, due Sept. 27): Each student should prepare an annotated bibliography of at least 20 items in length. The bibliography needs to be on a theme. The bibliography should include academic books or papers in peer reviewed or scholarly journals (not textbooks, popular works such as newspaper articles, or web resources). By "annotated", I mean that you should provide a short (3-4 sentence) description of what the work is about, and how it is relevant to the theme of the bibliography and to the general topic of space and place. You will need to run the theme of the bibliography by me. This bibliography can provide the basis for the final paper for the course, if you wish. The best annotations will become a permanent part of the "Research on Place and Space" website, with proper credit being given to the student and the class.

PLACE REVIEW (15%, due October 30): You should choose a place, either one you are familiar with or one which you are willing to become familiar with. You should apply one or more of the theorists we discuss in the course to that place, to make its meaning apparent. The Lucy Lippard book, The Lure of the Local, is the most important source for this assignment. You should make clear the ways in which the place is both explicitly and implicitly significant for those who experience it. Your review must discuss both what and how the place means, and/or how it fails to mean (or has lost meaning). This project must draw on theorists we use (especially Lippard), or others who you discuss with me - otherwise, it is very difficult to grade (it could simply be subjective opinion, rather than academic analysis). You will likely need to represent the place as well. This could be done in a variety of ways - visually (photographs, video, website production, etc.) or textually (descriptively, creatively, etc.). The best reviews will be well written and well organized, clear in thesis and tools of analysis, and will bring a concrete academic understanding of the place to the foreground. The review should be ~1500 words.

TERM PAPER (23% with presentation (7%) and response to others (5%). Final version due final day of classes): This is a traditional academic thesis defence paper. The paper can be linked to your annotated bibliography (that is, on the same topic) if you wish. All topics must be cleared in advance. We will discuss topics and format in class. There is a CLASS PRESENTATION (7%) of your paper, before you hand in a final draft (scheduled toward the end of the course). This will give you a chance to discuss your work, take students’ comments into account and produce a better paper. The final version of the paper will be due one on the final day of classes. While a student is presenting, others will be filling out comment forms. 5% of the course grade will be based on filling out forms for at least 2/3 of the presentations with meaningful comments. Students will receive the comments in time to use them to improve their work. The paper should be 2000-2500 words.

FINAL EXAM: 30% of the grade will be based on the final exam. It will be a take-home final, and will be due no later than 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 4 in the class room. I will need two copies, one electronic and one hard copy. The e-copy will have to be emailed to me (see The Fine Print for details on this).

Grade Distribution: I will record the assignment grades based on the percentage of the course grade during the term (that is, the final exam will be recorded as a grade out of 30, although it may be marked out of another number). The letter grade will be calculated only at the end of the course, based on full course grade. The distribution will be as follows:

A: 93-100

B: 83-86

C: 73-76

D: 63-66

A-: 90-92

B-: 80-82

C-: 70-72

D-: 60-62

B+: 87-89

C+: 77-79

D+: 67-69

F: 0-59


Each part is scheduled for roughly 2-3 weeks' duration. There will be readings from the reading package and the website for each of these sections. The topics in each part are meant to give a general idea of subjects associated with the larger concepts of place and space studies.


The Readings Schedule (subject to revision)

Part 1: Introduction: Theory and History of Representation, Place, and Space

Week 1-2

Part 2: Being In Place(s), Representing the Places We Are In

Week 3-5

Part 3: Building Place

Week 6-8

Part 4: Imagining Place

Week 9-10

Part 5: Navigating, Understanding, Connecting with Place

Week 11-13

Part 6: Student Presentations

Part 7 : Conclusion

Click Here for The Fine (but Important) Print (details, guidelines, and parameters for the course)