Professor Stewart is simply great. He is understanding, sensitive, and smart. He adjusted well to the all-online format and reassured us that he was well aware of the extraneous things going on in the world. At the same time, Professor Stewart led in-class discussions masterfully. I was constantly impressed by his teaching instincts. For example, when we were discussing the Bible, he repeatedly acknowledged the advantages and disadvantages of reading a religious text from a literary perspective. This, I imagine, can be a touchy subject for any teacher, given the obvious wide range of experience and opinions of students with the text. Somehow, he bridged the gap, providing thoughtful critiques of biblical characters himself while facilitating debate over perhaps unfair or excessive criticism of the text. This was topped off by a beautifully written email after a particularly lively class explaining his ongoing personal relationship with the religious text. During conversation, he strikes the perfect balance between listening and contributing, interjecting and leaving space when appropriate. He has a way of rephrasing and responding to students' comments so that even the most incoherent ones sound intelligent. This, I think, is a testament to his knowledge and familiarity with the subject matter.

His essay feedback is detailed and fair. He never calls people out in class and participation is purely voluntary, which makes class significantly less stressful. He didn't do reading checks but he did very occasionally take an in-class poll on a reading comprehension question. Ultimately, Professor Stewart is a reasonable and decent man. He wants to see his students succeed, and his energy and passion for the literature is infectious. If Professor Stewart is any indication of the quality of the English/Literature department, he has set the bar awfully high.

Workload:

6 Friday Reflections (1 page single-spaced). Two 3-4 page essays expanding upon two of those reflections. Normal LitHum reading.