Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Old college threads.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by tiwonge »

Out of curiousity, there was a bonus in DI whose answers were Anias Nin/Eleanor of Aquataine/Alma.

That last part, is that a bonus that one would know outside of Tom Lehrer's song? Was this bonus considered a trash mix, or an academic mix?

(I didn't get this bonus directed towards me, but if I did, I would have been able to answer Anias Nin and Alma thanks to song references.)
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Important Bird Area »

Miscellaneous academic.

Here's C:

"C. This woman married the novelist Franz Werfel, the architect Walter Gropius, and the Austrian composer of ~Songs of a Wayfarer~."
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by cvdwightw »

bt_green_warbler wrote:Miscellaneous academic.

Here's C:

"C. This woman married the novelist Franz Werfel, the architect Walter Gropius, and the Austrian composer of ~Songs of a Wayfarer~."
While I had no problem picking this up (other than a momentary "oh crap...do they want her maiden name?"), I think this part could have been made more "academic" with a Bride of the Wind clue. As it is it just looks like "hey name this chick that married three important people," which doesn't always smack of being academic.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by tiwonge »

cvdwightw wrote:
bt_green_warbler wrote:Miscellaneous academic.

Here's C:

"C. This woman married the novelist Franz Werfel, the architect Walter Gropius, and the Austrian composer of ~Songs of a Wayfarer~."
While I had no problem picking this up (other than a momentary "oh crap...do they want her maiden name?"), I think this part could have been made more "academic" with a Bride of the Wind clue. As it is it just looks like "hey name this chick that married three important people," which doesn't always smack of being academic.
Was it academic? Is she famous in her own right? I just know her because Tom Lehrer wrote a song about her. (The UW A team, which got this part correct, also converted it from the song.) (Would just "Alma" have been acceptable? What was the official answer?)

(I don't imagine that the song is that well-known. There just happened to be two math geeks--sort of the prime demographic for Tom Lehrer--in the room.)
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

Is she famous in her own right?
If you know about biographies of musical figures or some artists in that time period, you should encounter Alma Schindler at some point. I in fact had no idea there was a song about her by Tom Lehrer, but I got those points. I agree that the clues should probably have been different, but I do not think your knowledge pattern is shared by most people who know about Alma Schindler.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Sir Thopas »

Katamari Damacy wrote:
Is she famous in her own right?
If you know about biographies of musical figures or some artists in that time period, you should encounter Alma Schindler at some point. I in fact had no idea there was a song about her by Tom Lehrer, but I got those points. I agree that the clues should probably have been different, but I do not think your knowledge pattern is shared by most people who know about Alma Schindler.
I'm actually not convinced about your last point. Not that it matters, though; I'd get something on George Murphy from Tom Lehrer knowledge too.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Captain Sinico »

Alma Mahler inspired some pretty important works of art and certainly had a lot of intercourse with their creaters, so she's somewhat famous, maybe along the lines of a Victorine Meurent. I don't think that part's the ne plus ultra of academic character, but it could be worse; I wouldn't want a tournament full of such questions, but some are okay by me.

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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by stevebahnaman »

I think those have easy parts. B. of the first one reduces to "name the team that won the 2008 World Series" unless you propose some kind of odd hypothetical transaction history.
On paper it does. If you didn't pay that much attention to the years in part A you don't remember that's what they're going for; this happened in my room and happens all the time. Not to me on baseball questions because I know baseball...but the point is don't assume entirely that just because a year range was mentioned in part A that it's obvious that they'll remember this by part B.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by setht »

grapesmoker wrote:In tournaments using the ACF distribution, one expects to hear at least 1/1 non-English language literature per packet, and usually more (once you factor the world and European non-English lit), and I think the NAQT distribution needs to move in this direction as well.
I'm pretty sure NAQT's non-British European literature + world literature subdistributions add up to slightly more than 1/1 per packet, and I'm not sure there needs to be much more of either than there is right now--when I was working on the 2009 SCT, I found world literature one of the hardest subdistributions to fill out with interesting questions that I felt confident would see sufficient conversion: a significant percentage of the SCT field does not consist of experienced and pretty good (or better than pretty good) circuit teams, and my impression is that most inexperienced teams have much less exposure to non-English literature. A very similar thing happened when I was helping with 2009 ACF Fall: I saw a fair number of world lit bonuses that would have been fine for a field of canon-savvy circuit teams, but didn't seem like they would play well for the Fall audience.

Putting this another way: I think NAQT's literature subdistribution probably does a better job of reflecting the reading predilections of the SCT/ICT field (as a whole) than would a subdistribution with a shift to more non-English language literature. The current subdistribution may well do a worse job of reflecting the reading predilections of the top teams in the field.

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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

setht wrote:I'm pretty sure NAQT's non-British European literature + world literature subdistributions add up to slightly more than 1/1 per packet, and I'm not sure there needs to be much more of either than there is right now--when I was working on the 2009 SCT, I found world literature one of the hardest subdistributions to fill out with interesting questions that I felt confident would see sufficient conversion: a significant percentage of the SCT field does not consist of experienced and pretty good (or better than pretty good) circuit teams, and my impression is that most inexperienced teams have much less exposure to non-English literature. A very similar thing happened when I was helping with 2009 ACF Fall: I saw a fair number of world lit bonuses that would have been fine for a field of canon-savvy circuit teams, but didn't seem like they would play well for the Fall audience.
I don't know what the official NAQT distribution says, but that's not particularly relevant right now; I've presented several examples of packets which were heavily skewed in one direction, not just in terms of language but in terms of what form of literature they represented as well. I'm not saying this is some inexcusable flaw, but it's pretty annoying. I invite comparisons with the ACF Regionals breakdown, in which there was, in my view, a pretty good diversity of both topics and languages across the board.
Putting this another way: I think NAQT's literature subdistribution probably does a better job of reflecting the reading predilections of the SCT/ICT field (as a whole) than would a subdistribution with a shift to more non-English language literature. The current subdistribution may well do a worse job of reflecting the reading predilections of the top teams in the field.
Why exactly is this important? And anyway, I don't believe this for a second. Does quizbowl have some unknown love of Joyce Kilmer that I don't know about? I am guessing not; in fact, I believe hardly anyone reads Kilmer for fun just because with the exception of his one poem. This isn't to say that he shouldn't be asked about but I don't see any compelling evidence that SCT is either closer or farther to what anyone reads than any other tournament.

Since I'm already typing, is there a reason for NAQT's love of Patricia Highsmith? I'm curious because she came up in last year's SCT as well, I believe, and then again this year.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by setht »

grapesmoker wrote:
setht wrote:I'm pretty sure NAQT's non-British European literature + world literature subdistributions add up to slightly more than 1/1 per packet, and I'm not sure there needs to be much more of either than there is right now--when I was working on the 2009 SCT, I found world literature one of the hardest subdistributions to fill out with interesting questions that I felt confident would see sufficient conversion: a significant percentage of the SCT field does not consist of experienced and pretty good (or better than pretty good) circuit teams, and my impression is that most inexperienced teams have much less exposure to non-English literature. A very similar thing happened when I was helping with 2009 ACF Fall: I saw a fair number of world lit bonuses that would have been fine for a field of canon-savvy circuit teams, but didn't seem like they would play well for the Fall audience.
I don't know what the official NAQT distribution says, but that's not particularly relevant right now; I've presented several examples of packets which were heavily skewed in one direction, not just in terms of language but in terms of what form of literature they represented as well. I'm not saying this is some inexcusable flaw, but it's pretty annoying. I invite comparisons with the ACF Regionals breakdown, in which there was, in my view, a pretty good diversity of both topics and languages across the board.
I thought you were arguing both that the set needed less variability from packet to packet in the breakdown of English/non-English literature (not something I would argue against), and that the set needed more non-English literature in general. I meant to address only that second bit.
grapesmoker wrote:
Putting this another way: I think NAQT's literature subdistribution probably does a better job of reflecting the reading predilections of the SCT/ICT field (as a whole) than would a subdistribution with a shift to more non-English language literature. The current subdistribution may well do a worse job of reflecting the reading predilections of the top teams in the field.
Why exactly is this important? And anyway, I don't believe this for a second. Does quizbowl have some unknown love of Joyce Kilmer that I don't know about? I am guessing not; in fact, I believe hardly anyone reads Kilmer for fun just because with the exception of his one poem. This isn't to say that he shouldn't be asked about but I don't see any compelling evidence that SCT is either closer or farther to what anyone reads than any other tournament.
I'm not saying the specific English language literature answers at SCT were great at reflecting what the field reads. I am saying (continuing from the previous stuff about whether or not the amount of non-English literature in the set should be expanded) that I think an SCT/ICT distribution with something like 75% English language literature and 25% non-English language literature is pretty close to what most teams in the SCT/ICT field read, and that any significant shift towards more non-English language literature would result in a distribution that is further from what most teams in the SCT/ICT field read. Obviously any particular instantiation of that distribution could do a great or terrible job of reflecting the primary knowledge of the audience.

Perhaps I've misinterpreted your statements that "European non-English language literature in general seemed woefully underrepresented" and that "in tournaments using the ACF distribution, one expects to hear at least 1/1 non-English language literature per packet, and usually more (once you factor the world and European non-English lit), and I think the NAQT distribution needs to move in this direction as well." If you're only interested in tweaking how the set-wide distribution shows up on a packet-by-packet basis, my response is not at all to the point and I'll happily drop this whole line of discussion. If you're interested in shifting the balance of English and non-English language literature in the set, then I'm saying that I think the current balance seems about right, and I think making some estimate of what the field reads is relevant to the issue.

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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

I'm arguing both points, actually. Yes, variability needs to decrease, but also non-English language literature should get a greater representation. I think something like 2/3 to 1/3 ratio would be more in line with what I see as good.

I still don't get the appeal to "what people playing SCT read." People read all kinds of things and fortunately we live in a time when translations of major non-English language works are widely available in cheap paperback form, not to mention the fact that these books are assigned and actually read just as much as English-language stuff. I don't see any evidence at all to indicate that there's a 3 to 1 disparity between English language and non-English language works being read on the circuit.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

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grapesmoker wrote:I'm arguing both points, actually. Yes, variability needs to decrease, but also non-English language literature should get a greater representation. I think something like 2/3 to 1/3 ratio would be more in line with what I see as good.

I still don't get the appeal to "what people playing SCT read." People read all kinds of things and fortunately we live in a time when translations of major non-English language works are widely available in cheap paperback form, not to mention the fact that these books are assigned and actually read just as much as English-language stuff. I don't see any evidence at all to indicate that there's a 3 to 1 disparity between English language and non-English language works being read on the circuit.
I'm appealing to "what people playing SCT read" as a good proxy for "what people playing SCT know at a level conducive to good quizbowl matches" (e.g., being able to buzz before giveaways semi-regularly). I think this is an appropriate proxy in the case of SCT since a significant portion of the field consists of teams that know literature that they read and probably not much else--that is, teams that aren't making an effort to read Masterplots/other summaries of literary works, and aren't working through old packets, in an effort to score points in quizbowl matches. While am at it, I'll point out that what is read on the circuit is not the same as what is read among SCT-playing teams. In any case, presumably the data to look at are SCT/ICT conversion rates for various literature questions. Unfortunately I get an error when I try to look up the conversion numbers.

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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Brian Ulrich »

grapesmoker wrote:I still don't get the appeal to "what people playing SCT read." People read all kinds of things and fortunately we live in a time when translations of major non-English language works are widely available in cheap paperback form, not to mention the fact that these books are assigned and actually read just as much as English-language stuff. I don't see any evidence at all to indicate that there's a 3 to 1 disparity between English language and non-English language works being read on the circuit.
I don't think the "not" clause of the middle sentence is true. Most colleges have English departments, while departments in other languages are scattered to certain ones at different schools, often in regional combinations. Departments in other languages also focus more on language teaching than the literature. This is even worse in high schools - Wisconsin seemed pretty good about globalization, and I took a real "world literature" class in Quincy, Illinois, but in Pennsylvania even with "world" standards written for state tests, teachers don't do it, tending to protest lack of knowledge. I bet the only place most students are exposed to non-English lit in their curriculum is with gen ed world lit courses, as well as world history courses that often mention the epics of older civilizations.

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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

Brian Ulrich wrote:I don't think the "not" clause of the middle sentence is true. Most colleges have English departments, while departments in other languages are scattered to certain ones at different schools, often in regional combinations. Departments in other languages also focus more on language teaching than the literature. This is even worse in high schools - Wisconsin seemed pretty good about globalization, and I took a real "world literature" class in Quincy, Illinois, but in Pennsylvania even with "world" standards written for state tests, teachers don't do it, tending to protest lack of knowledge. I bet the only place most students are exposed to non-English lit in their curriculum is with gen ed world lit courses, as well as world history courses that often mention the epics of older civilizations.
Well, first, I don't think it matters all that much what gets assigned in high school. Second, I'm not even talking about foreign language departments, but just about departments of literature in general. They totally do assign people various things to read, sometimes in translation, sometimes not. I mean, my history class on modern Europe at Berkeley had, as assigned reading, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, The Leopard, Darkness at Noon, and The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, among other works, and it's not even a literature class. And someone like Kundera is an author that people are likely to actually read independent of any assignment, just because he's, you know, a good author. For example, I posit that it's far more probably for someone to have read The Unbearable Lightness of Being than it is for them to have read The Changeling.
setht wrote:I'm appealing to "what people playing SCT read" as a good proxy for "what people playing SCT know at a level conducive to good quizbowl matches" (e.g., being able to buzz before giveaways semi-regularly). I think this is an appropriate proxy in the case of SCT since a significant portion of the field consists of teams that know literature that they read and probably not much else--that is, teams that aren't making an effort to read Masterplots/other summaries of literary works, and aren't working through old packets, in an effort to score points in quizbowl matches. While am at it, I'll point out that what is read on the circuit is not the same as what is read among SCT-playing teams. In any case, presumably the data to look at are SCT/ICT conversion rates for various literature questions. Unfortunately I get an error when I try to look up the conversion numbers.
I don't really understand what you mean here. You're arguing that the distribution as it is right now is more in line with what "teams that play SCT," which apparently is a set not identical with "the circuit," actually read. I'm saying that I don't see a whole lot of evidence for this, particularly as I peruse the answer choices in the SCT packets. I don't know what this has to do with reading Masterplots or old packets; did the Regionals set preferentially reward people who did that? I don't think so.

I don't know what the conversion rate is either, but what I will tell you is that I'm doing some relative analysis of teams that played both SCT and Regionals and there's a huge gulf in bonus conversion between the two, and not in a way that's favorable to the SCT. Teams picked up as many as almost 7 points per bonus playing Regionals over SCT; no team at SCT broke 20 PPB, while quite a few teams did so at Regionals. Is the literature discussion part of this? I don't know and won't venture to guess, but there's no obvious evidence either in the numbers or in the answer selection that SCT caters to what its teams read any more than any other tournament (and some reason to suspect it may cater to it less).
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

As long as we're on this topic, could someone from NAQT actually post the list of SCT literature answers? This can surely be done easier than me combing the packets for them.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Brian Ulrich »

grapesmoker wrote:
Brian Ulrich wrote:I don't think the "not" clause of the middle sentence is true. Most colleges have English departments, while departments in other languages are scattered to certain ones at different schools, often in regional combinations. Departments in other languages also focus more on language teaching than the literature. This is even worse in high schools - Wisconsin seemed pretty good about globalization, and I took a real "world literature" class in Quincy, Illinois, but in Pennsylvania even with "world" standards written for state tests, teachers don't do it, tending to protest lack of knowledge. I bet the only place most students are exposed to non-English lit in their curriculum is with gen ed world lit courses, as well as world history courses that often mention the epics of older civilizations.
Well, first, I don't think it matters all that much what gets assigned in high school. Second, I'm not even talking about foreign language departments, but just about departments of literature in general. They totally do assign people various things to read, sometimes in translation, sometimes not. I mean, my history class on modern Europe at Berkeley had, as assigned reading, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, The Leopard, Darkness at Noon, and The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, among other works, and it's not even a literature class. And someone like Kundera is an author that people are likely to actually read independent of any assignment, just because he's, you know, a good author. For example, I posit that it's far more probably for someone to have read The Unbearable Lightness of Being than it is for them to have read The Changeling.
How common are literature departments? Wisconsin had a small "comp lit" department, but aside from that all I've seen are "language and literature" approaches. This is the case at Quincy University, Beloit College, Colgate University, and Shippensburg University, though perhaps I should do a more thorough study than just "places I've been."
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

I was talking about this with Trygve just now and he pointed out that, at least at UIUC, the English department proper focuses rather narrowly on just anglophone stuff, while the Comp. Lit. department tends to encompass a lot broader range of non-anglophone literature. At Brown, the non-anglophone stuff seems to be distributed among the language departments in addition to Comp. Lit. I don't really know what to make of this as far as this discussion goes.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by setht »

grapesmoker wrote:
setht wrote:I'm appealing to "what people playing SCT read" as a good proxy for "what people playing SCT know at a level conducive to good quizbowl matches" (e.g., being able to buzz before giveaways semi-regularly). I think this is an appropriate proxy in the case of SCT since a significant portion of the field consists of teams that know literature that they read and probably not much else--that is, teams that aren't making an effort to read Masterplots/other summaries of literary works, and aren't working through old packets, in an effort to score points in quizbowl matches. While am at it, I'll point out that what is read on the circuit is not the same as what is read among SCT-playing teams. In any case, presumably the data to look at are SCT/ICT conversion rates for various literature questions. Unfortunately I get an error when I try to look up the conversion numbers.
I don't really understand what you mean here. You're arguing that the distribution as it is right now is more in line with what "teams that play SCT," which apparently is a set not identical with "the circuit," actually read. I'm saying that I don't see a whole lot of evidence for this, particularly as I peruse the answer choices in the SCT packets. I don't know what this has to do with reading Masterplots or old packets; did the Regionals set preferentially reward people who did that? I don't think so.

I don't know what the conversion rate is either, but what I will tell you is that I'm doing some relative analysis of teams that played both SCT and Regionals and there's a huge gulf in bonus conversion between the two, and not in a way that's favorable to the SCT. Teams picked up as many as almost 7 points per bonus playing Regionals over SCT; no team at SCT broke 20 PPB, while quite a few teams did so at Regionals. Is the literature discussion part of this? I don't know and won't venture to guess, but there's no obvious evidence either in the numbers or in the answer selection that SCT caters to what its teams read any more than any other tournament (and some reason to suspect it may cater to it less).
I'm under the impression that there are a decent number of teams that play SCT each year that play few, if any, circuit events. I believe the entire British SCT field matches that description, for instance. Looking at your own SCT, I see UConn, Tufts and Providence College. A cursory search leads me to believe these teams did not play Regionals; are these teams that show up regularly to other circuit events, or would it be fair to characterize them as teams that play SCT but are not really part of the circuit?

Moving on: I think we need to disentangle sub-distribution and answer choice as much as possible to have a productive discussion here. A bad tossup on Kilmer probably does not, by itself, signal that there's too much American literature in a set--unless the contention is that the bad Kilmer tossup was written because all the good options for American lit questions were used up and there was still more American lit needed in the set.

My comments regarding Masterplots/old packets had nothing to do with the Regionals set. I was arguing that "what people read (in class and on their own time)" is nearly identical with "what people know in any depth" when it comes to many of the teams playing SCT.

I think any comparison of the bulk conversion numbers for SCT and Regionals is pretty much useless for arguing for/against any fine-tuning of the SCT distribution, for many reasons. As I said before, I think the best way to get a useful handle on this is to look at detailed conversion numbers just from SCT. Given that there were some unfortunate literature answer selections, we might want to try to reduce that noise by looking at conversion numbers from the last couple SCTs.

To further clarify things: by my count, literature as a whole is something like 4.5/4.5 per packet, with European literature coming in at a little under 1/1 per packet, American and British literature each getting just under 1.5/1.5 per packet, world literature getting about 0.25/0.25 per packet, and miscellaneous literature getting about 0.25/0.25 per packet. This is actually pretty close to a 2/3 : 1/3 split in English : non-English literature. This seems fine to me.

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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Important Bird Area »

setht wrote:I'm under the impression that there are a decent number of teams that play SCT each year that play few, if any, circuit events. I believe the entire British SCT field matches that description, for instance. Looking at your own SCT, I see UConn, Tufts and Providence College. A cursory search leads me to believe these teams did not play Regionals; are these teams that show up regularly to other circuit events, or would it be fair to characterize them as teams that play SCT but are not really part of the circuit?
Probably worth separating DI and DII teams here.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

setht wrote:To further clarify things: by my count, literature as a whole is something like 4.5/4.5 per packet
Is this true? My cursory count doesn't match this number (not nearly as far as the first 20/20 go). Posting the answers would sure clarify this; otherwise, I'll go through and fish them out later.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Important Bird Area »

grapesmoker wrote:Posting the answers would sure clarify this; otherwise, I'll go through and fish them out later.
I'm working on this right now, but it will be a few more minutes.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Important Bird Area »

Edward Albee, This Side of Paradise, Thanatopsis, silver bullets, Julia Ward Howe, The Octopus, Henry Adams, John Berryman, For the Union Dead, William Inge, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Twice-told Tales, Tony Kushner, Edwin Arlington Robinson, Joyce Kilmer, Song of Solomon, The Sound and the Fury, John Barth, Carol Kennicott, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Thomas Pynchon, Roughing It, Nathanael West, Tennessee Williams

Ben-Hur/Messala/Ilderim, Sign in Sidney Brustein's Window/Hansberry/Younger family, Capote/In Cold Blood/Other Voices, Other Rooms, Chingachgook/Hawkeye/Duncan, Sylvia Plath/Stevie Smith/Rita Dove, Hurston/Their Eyes Were Watching God/Dust Tracks on a Road, Rise of Silas Lapham/Grandissimes/Tom Sawyer, Frank Kermode/Wallace Stevens/TS Eliot, William Saroyan/The Human Comedy/Time of Your Life, Humboldt's Gift/Bellow/Delmore Schwartz, Pisan Cantos/Pound/Bollingen prize, Olaf/EE Cummings/anyone, Robert Caro/The Path to Power/Robert Moses, Gertrude Stein/Autobiography of Alice B Toklas/Four Saints in Three Acts, Larry McMurtry/Lonesome Dove/Last Picture Show, Blast/The Dial/Little Review, Herman Melville/Upton Sinclair/Charles Dickens, Ode to the Confederate Dead/Tate/Parmenides, The Crisis/WEB Du Bois/James Russell Lowell, Doctor Faustus/Babbitt/Ragtime, HH Jackson/Ramona/Emily Dickinson, The Virginian/Nostromo/Uncle Tom

 

Alex (Clockwork Orange), Rupert Brooke, Lycidas, Daniel Defoe, AS Byatt, Joseph Conrad, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Holy Sonnets, Jerusalem, Mary Shelley, common link on translating Homer, Izaak Walton, John Keats, Robert Graves, Miss Jean Brodie, DH Lawrence, Anthony Trollope, Richard Lovelace, Tamburlaine, WM Thackeray, Pamela Andrews, A Room with a View

Clerk's Tale/Griselda/Decameron, Boar's Head/Falstaff/Holst, Burgoyne/Saratoga/GB Shaw, Return of the Native/Jane Eyre/Aurora Leigh, Antonio/Angelo/Antipholus, Castle of Otranto/Walpole/Manfred, Death of the Ball Turret Gunner/Lost Pilot/Irish Airman Foresees his Death, John Marston/Ben Jonson/George Chapman, things that Hamlet calls Polonius, Of Human Bondage/Maugham/Philip Carey, Lucky Jim/Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner/Look Back in Anger, Esther Summerson/Nicholas Nickleby/Oliver Twist, Orwell/Homage to Catalonia/Animal Farm, Emma/Northanger Abbey/Pride and Prejudice, Alfred Douglas/Oscar Wilde/Marquess of Queensbury, Absalom and Achitophel/Astrophel and Stella/Geraint and Enid, To an Athlete Dying Young/1887/Terence this is stupid stuff, Eyeless in Gaza/Huxley/Samson Agonistes, Thomas Otway/Aphra Behn/Don Carlos, Matthew Arnold/Thyrsis/Dover Beach, Asher Lev/Jessica/Rebecca, Adam Bede/George Eliot/Hetty Sorrel, Percy Shelley/Defense of Poetry/Prometheus Unbound

Garcia Lorca, Roland, Heinrich Boll, Henry IV, Maid of Orleans, Simone de Beauvoir, Nikos Kazantzakis, common link on Mashas in Russian lit, Lope de Vega, satires of Juvenal, Eugene Ionesco, Gotthold Lessing, Maxim Gorky

The Good Soldier/Zuleika Dobson/Sorrows of Young Werther, Sentimental Education/Frederic Moreau/Salambbo, Euripides/Polyphemus/Silenus, Laclos/Dangerous Liaisons/Andre Gide, In the Penal Colony/The Judgment/The Metamorphosis, Hasek/Good Soldier Svejk/Bertolt Brecht, wergild/Beowulf/Njal's Saga, Elie Wiesel/Victor Klemperer/Irene Nemirovsky, hubris/persona/eccyclema, Pastor Brand/Bishop Latour/Father Brown, Doctor Pascal/Nana/Zola, Danglars/Phileas Fogg/Eugene Onegin, Strindberg/Miss Julie/Dance of Death

 

Ethiopia, Nigeria, Little Red Book, Basho

Allende/Donoso/Bolano, Dream of the Red Chamber/Paoyu/Qing Dynasty, Elizabeth Costello/JM Coetzee/von Hofmannsthal, Bioy Casares/JL Borges/"pigs"

Patricia Highsmith, JM Barrie, Francois Villon, Vargas Llosa

Quiet American/Our Man in Havana/End of the Affair, Agnes Grey/Ann Bronte/Tenant of Wildfell Hall, Thomas Chatterton/James MacPherson/Philip Jose Farmer, White Devil/The Changeling/Tis Pity She's a Whore
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by setht »

grapesmoker wrote:
setht wrote:To further clarify things: by my count, literature as a whole is something like 4.5/4.5 per packet
Is this true? My cursory count doesn't match this number (not nearly as far as the first 20/20 go). Posting the answers would sure clarify this; otherwise, I'll go through and fish them out later.
I went back and looked at the distribution page for SCT again; by my (revised) count, the set had 4.25/4.125 literature per round--and this does not include the religious literature subdistribution. I don't know if a bunch of questions got stuck past the first 20/20.

-Seth
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Mechanical Beasts »

setht wrote:
grapesmoker wrote:
setht wrote:To further clarify things: by my count, literature as a whole is something like 4.5/4.5 per packet
Is this true? My cursory count doesn't match this number (not nearly as far as the first 20/20 go). Posting the answers would sure clarify this; otherwise, I'll go through and fish them out later.
I went back and looked at the distribution page for SCT again; by my (revised) count, the set had 4.25/4.125 literature per round--and this does not include the religious literature subdistribution. I don't know if a bunch of questions got stuck past the first 20/20.
I mean, you've got a twenty-six question packet; on average, only 3.27/3.17 of that is in the first 20/20. Granted, Brown heard 328 tossups in 14 games, so I'd imagine Jerry has something like 3.83/3.72 per packet.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by grapesmoker »

Thanks to Jeff for posting that list. I think it basically supports the argument that I'm trying to make, which is that despite its predominance of Anglophone literature, the SCT answer selection is not necessarily a particularly good representation of what I suspect most people actually read. For example, there's a bonus on noted American novel Ben-Hur. I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that no one playing SCT has actually read that; it's not the kind of thing people, even well-read people, read. Things like that are fortunately rare in that list, but there are plenty of other things in there that I'm guessing most people playing SCT haven't read either: Howe, Lovelace, Trollope, Pamela, The White Devil, The Virginian, etc. I don't mean to say that people shouldn't write questions on these things, because they're by and large fine topics, but there's nothing in here that supports the contention that this selection of answers represents the reading habits of the SCT any better than any other similarly academically relevant answer selection. In fact, if I had to guess how these questions came about, I would guess that Andrew Yaphe, who I understand wrote most of the literature for the SCT, just sat down and tried to fill the relevant categories with questions that would be converted with some amount of success and without a whole lot of soul-searching about what the SCT-playing public reads. I feel like that argument is basically a retroactive justification of a particular distribution choice rather than part of any fundamental consideration for how that distribution came about.

I'm also somewhat confused by the presence of things like Mao's Little Red Book in the literature distribution, as well as by the apparent classification of a bonus with parts on The Good Soldier and Zuleika Dobson in the "non-English language" literature section just because one of the parts is on Werther. Given the relative paucity of non-Anglophone literature in this set, things like this become much more noticeable.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by stevebahnaman »

Go get 'em Jerry. I made a remark between rounds that it seemed like every damn Anglophone writer who comes up occasionally was coming up, but there was like not much Shakespeare or good American lit in the packets and way too little world lit. This list proves that quite well.
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by AKKOLADE »

I'm assuming there's no reason this stuff can't get kicked out of her and into the public in the near future?
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Re: Welcome to the 2010 SCT discussion.

Post by Important Bird Area »

Please go ahead and make it visible to all.
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