Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Canterbury Tales Virtual Pilgrimage in Second Life by Literature Alive!

The Canterbury Tales Virtual Pilgrimage was the first literature build of Literature Alive! back in 2006.  It only seems fitting that the Renaissance of Literature Alive! should begin with the same build.

Many thanks to Finn Zeddmore and the Happy Clams for their land donation.

In the 48 hours since it opened it doors to the public, The Canterbury Tales has hosted 280 visitors and has been featured as an Editor's Pick on the SL Destinations page.  Royce and I are entirely blown away by the positive response!

The Canterbury Tales Virtual Pilgrimage is free and welcomes all avatars.

Visitors enter the build at the foot of the Tabard Inn stairs.  Directions point them to the second floor where they will begin their pilgrimage.

Each room on the upper floor has information about the life and times of Chaucer, and when patrons are ready, they click on the teleport button to travel to the first station and tale.  At each station, there is a treasure chest quizzer that gives a prize if the resident writes the correct answer.  There are also "relics" hidden on the site with additional prizes.  Once residents read the Tales, they return back to the Tabard to vote for the best Tale.

The goal of the build is to help residents appreciate the Canterbury Tales and to learn a little about the life and times of Chaucer.  The build is one of many Literature Alive! creations making their way back to the grid.  All builds are open access and open source and can be packed for residents with all full perm contents.

Literature Alive! exists as a community project and relies entirely on land grant and linden donations to support its work.  Literature Alive! has purposely never been tied to a particular institution to allow it full rights to share content with the community.

Questions about Literature Alive! or the CTVP should be directed inworld via notecard to Desideria Stockton.

Literature Alive! is Back!!!

I thought it was packed up safely in my inventory never to see the light again.  I was OK with that - it had its run; it was great, but it was over.  Elo, Dal, and I had each moved on.  I no longer teach regularly, so I had no need for classroom builds.

Then I met Royce.

He didn't know a thing about Literature Alive!  He was part of my new Second Life.  My social Second Life.  My non-educational Second Life.

And, then Royce stuck around.

Turns out he is amazing builder and designer.  So detailed.  So passionate about every prim.  He is a true treasure to work with, and he blew off the dust and picked these pixels out of the packing box.

The Canterbury Tales is featured on Second Life Destinations as an Editor's Pick.

The Edgar Allan Poe House of Usher will open with the SL 12th Birthday Celebration sims on June 22.

We are planning a Ghost Town project featuring Bodie, CA and Prupyat, Ukraine.

The history of Literature Alive! is below (in case you have nothing better to do).


Literature Alive! in Second Life  ** 2006-Present **


The goals of Literature Alive! are to help faculty create ethical and immersive learning environments that provide "added value" to students in composition, professional writing, and literature courses: to help students use the resources of a 3D world to add to the depth and breadth of understanding literature; to foster a community of open access educators dedicated to the sharing of teaching content; and, finally, to promote a lifelong love of learning through a lifelong passion for reading.


Literature Alive! in Second Life was born in December 2006 as a voluntary effort and continues to exist on a voluntary basis. By working collaboratively with others, modeling virtual citizenship, and securing land grant and linden sponsors, Literature Alive! has produced over 67 literary projects in Second Life.  Literature Alive! was proud to be one of Linden Lab SL Views (7) guests advocating for the needs of the higher education community.

Open Access Education:

Literature Alive! is built on the idea that information is worth sharing.  All of the LA! builds were created to be shared, and have been distributed as full perm items to over 150 schools on the main grid and the former teen grid at no cost.

Literature Alive! Today

When Philip Linden left LL as CEO the first time, support for educational projects decreased.  Educational discounting ceased, and universities and colleges could no longer afford to sustain virtual land.  Since LA! survived entirely on land grant donations, many of the builds had to be packed up as college and universities left the grid.  The discontinuation of the Teen Grid also impacted the use of the LA! builds. Finally, Desi Stockton moved into an administrative role in her professional career and no longer taught literature courses on a regular basis.  The need for new classrooms decreased.  Desi recently returned to SL after a two year hiatus and has been exploring the social side of SL.

In June 2015, Literature Alive! returned to the grid to build the House of Usher for the 2015 SL Community Birthday Celebration.  Desi and her partner, Royce Sommer, are currently working on a reboot of the Canterbury Tales, the "madness" project which details abandoned mental hospitals and the stories that emerge concerning mental illness, and a project devoted to sharing the stories of international ghost towns.  As land grants permit, they will reboot many of the builds listed below.

Literature Alive! Team:

Desideria Stockton, Founder & Educational Designer, 2006-Present
Daliah Carter, Executive Assistant, 2007-Present
Eloise Pasteur, Principal Builder & Scripter, 2006-2010
Royce Sommer, Principal Builder, 2015-Present


Literature Alive! exists because of the generosity of the community.  It was important to not tie LA! to any particular college or University so that builds could be shared freely.  In this way, the literature builds become all of our community property.

None of the staff of Literature Alive! Staff are compensated in any way for their work in LA!  There are three types of sponsors:

Land Grant Sponsors that provide land parcels for builds,
Texture Sponsors that provide Linden for texture uploads, and
Props Sponsors that provide Linden or for the purchasing of build props or provide in-kind items that can be used in builds.

All sponsors choose the builds they want to support, and receive a full perm copy of the build (for items that are transferable).  A Notecard receipt is also available to detail how Linden donations were spent.

**Current Literature Alive! Sponsors:
Finn Zeddmore (The Canterbury Tales Virtual Pilgrimage) (Land Grant)

Past Literature Alive! Sponsors:
ACHUB (Audio Zenith/Chris Hambly) - (Land Grant)
Alliance Library - (Land Grant)
British Education Network - (Land Grant)
Calendon Library - (Props)
Cattle Puppy Productions - (Land Grant)
DeSales University - (Land Grant)
Drexel University (Jean-Claude Bradley/Horace Moody) - (Land Grant)
Edu Island II (Fleet Goldberg) - (Land Grant)
Education UK Land Grant Program  - (Land Grant)
Eloise Pasteur Educational Designs - (Props) (Design Services)
Finger Lakes Community College - (Land Grant)
Hyperstring.net - (Land Grant)
Lehigh Carbon Community College - (Land Grant)
Linden Lab - (Land Grant)
Liz Ferenghetti Landscaping - (Props) (Land Grant)
Montclair State University - (Land Grant)
North Georgia CSU - (Land Grant)
Phillip Linden - (Land Grant)
Phoenix Educational Designs (Neoznet Watts) - (Props) (Design Services)
Renaissance Island - (Land Grant)
SLCN.tv - (Land Grant)
The V3 Group (Liam Kanno) - (Texture) (Props)
VIT World Group - (Land Grant)

Specific Works & Sponsors 2015-Present

The House of Usher
Sponsors: Self Supported; Second Life Birthday 12
Author: Edgar Allan Poe
Texts: Annabel Lee, The Raven, The Tell-Tale Heart, The Rise & Fall of the House of Usher, The Black Cat, & The Cask of Amontillado
LM: (opens June 21): 􀀅

The Canterbury Tales Virtual Pilgrimage
Sponsors: Finn Zeddmore
Author: Geoffrey Chaucer
Text: The Canterbury Tales
LM: 􀀆

Specific Works & Sponsors 2006-2013

The Camelot Classroom
Sponsors: British Education Network, Education UK Land Grant Program & ACHUB
Authors:  Tennyson, Blake, Keats, Byron, Coleridge, Wordsworth, P. Bysshe Shelley, M. Shelley, & Mary Wolstonecraft

The British Literature Classroom
Sponsors: British Education Network, Education UK Land Grant Program & Calendon Library
--The Lady of Shallott by Alfred, Lord Tennyson,
--The works of William Blake, Keats, Byron, Coleridge, Wordsworth, P. Bysshe Shelley, M. Shelley, & Mary Wolstonecraft
--Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (on loan from Caledon Library)

The Elizabethan Classroom @ Renaissance Island
Sponsors: Literature Alive! & Renaissance Island
Authors:  William Shakespeare, Queen Elizabeth I, Sir Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlow, & Edmund Spenser
Texts & Themes:
--The Letters of HRH Elizabeth I
--The Shakespeare Controversy
--Voices from the Scripts: The Desdemona Project
--The Sonnet
--London: City of Cities Exhibit (on loan from Caledon Library)

Herot Hall & Grendel's Lair
Sponsors: Literature Alive! & Eloise Pasteur Educational Designs
Text: Beowulf

The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Seaside Classroom
Sponsors: Literature Alive!
Author: Samuel Taylor Coleridge

The Gothic Literature Classroom
Sponsors: Literature Alive! & EduIsland II
Texts: Frankenstein by M. Shelley, Dracula by B. Stoker, Nosferatu (1922 film), The Monk by M. Lewis, The Mysteries of Udolpho by A. Radcliff, The Castle of Ontranto by Horace Walpole & La Belle Dame sans Merci by J. Keats & Gothic Literature Vocabulary Quest

The Archetypal Cavern
Sponsors: Literature Alive:
Themes:  The Hero's Journey, Archetypal Patterns, Literary Theory, & Female Archetypes
Theories:  Carl Jung
Texts: Varied

The Women & War Classroom
Sponsors: Lehigh Carbon Community College, Drexel University & Dr. Jean-Claude Bradley
Themes: Propaganda & Comfort Women

The Kate Chopin Classroom
Sponsors: North Georgia SCU & Eloise Pasteur Educational Designs
Texts: The Story of an Hour, The Awakening, & A Respectable Woman

The Edgar Allan Poe Classroom
Sponsor: Montclair State University
Texts: The Fall of the House of Usher, Tell-Tale Heart, The Cask of Amontillado, The Raven, The Black Cat, The Purloined Letter, The Pit & The Pendulum, & Annabel Lee

Mama Day Classroom
Sponsor: Montclair State University
Academic Partner: Dr. Laura Nicosia
Text: Mama Day by Gloria Naylor

The Women of Brewster Place Classroom
Sponsor: Literature Alive!
Text: The Women of Brewster Place by Gloria Naylor

The Men of Brewster Place Classroom
Sponsor: Literature Alive!
Text: The Men of Brewster Place by Gloria Naylor

Bailey's Cafe Classroom
Sponsor: Literature Alive!
Text: Bailey's Cafe by Gloria Naylor

Linden Hills & Dante's Inferno Classroom
Sponsor: Linden Lab & New Media Consortium
Academic Partner: Dr. Laura Nicosia
Texts: Linden Hills by Gloria Naylor & The Inferno by Dante Alighieri

The American Literature Classroom
Sponsor: Montclair State University
Mini Builds:
--Young Goodman Brown - Nathaniel Hawthorne
--American Literature Match Up Game
--The Rave - Edgar Allan Poe
--Story of an Hour - Kate Chopin
--Puritan Voices and Native American Interactive
--Harrison Bergeron - Kurt Vonnegut

The Nathaniel Hawthorne Classroom
Sponsor: Lehigh Carbon Community College & DeSales University
Texts: Young Goodman Brown, The Scarlet Letter, Blithedale Romance, The Minister's Black Veil, & The Birthmark

Spoon River Anthology  Classroom
Sponsor: Finger Lakes Community College
Text: Spoon River Anthology - Edgar Lee Masters

The Feral Cat Project - Scientific Writing/Technical Writing
Sponsor: Lehigh Carbon Community College

The Canterbury Tales - Geoffrey Chaucer
Sponsor:  British Education Network
Theme: Interactive Pilgrimage

The Feral Cat Project - Scientific Writing/Technical Writing
Sponsor: Lehigh Carbon Community College
Theme: Grant writing & research

The DeSales Contemporary Fiction Classroom
Sponsor: Finger Lakes Community College, Larry Dugan/Marcuis Downing (SL)
Texts: Student Selected

The Collaboration Station (Composition Classroom)
Sponsor: SLCN.tv & Cattle Puppy Productions
--The Treasure Chest Web 2.0 Classroom
--Assessment Central
--The Blog Station

Maya Angelou Classroom
Sponsor: Lehigh Carbon Community College
Text: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

The Literary Holodeck Project
Sponsor: Lehigh Carbon Community College
--The Lottery - Shirley Jackson
--Harrison Bergeron - Kurt Vonnegut
--Night - Elie Wiesel
--Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge - Ambrose Bierce
--Paul's Case - Willa Cather
--The Story of an Hour - Kate Chopin
--A Rose for Emily - William Faulkner
--The Yellow Wallpaper - Charlotte Perkins Gilman
--Hills Like White Elephants - Ernest Hemingway
--The Real Thing - Henry James
--A White Heron - Sarah Orne Jewett
--Bartelby the Scrivener - Herman Melville
--A Good Man is Hard to Find - Flannery O'Connor

Additional Projects:

The Willow Springs Project - This virtual island includes all of the items you would expect to see from Mama Day's island home. Hosted at CHSS Montclair. Designers: Laura Nicosia, Beth Ritter-Guth, Eloise Pasteur, AJ Kelton

Bailey's Cafe and Brewster Place - These immersive classrooms include many of the items you might expect to see in the Gloria Naylor novels Bailey's Cafe, The Women of Brewster Place, and The Men of Brewster Place. Hosted by Butch Day at the VIT World Group. Designers: Beth Ritter-Guth, Eloise Pasteur

Linden Hills and Dante's Inferno - These side-by-side builds demonstrate the similar structure of Linden Hills to Dante's Inferno. Designers: Beth Ritter-Guth, Eloise Pasteur

The Women and War Learning Community Classroom at Drexel Island (Sponsor: Drexel University and Jean-Claude Bradley (Designers: Desideria Stockton, Neoznet Watts, Eloise Pasteur)

World War II History Submarine Classroom (Designers: Neoznet Watts, Desideria Stockton, Foe Hammerer)

Women's Studies Classroom Suite (Designers: Neoznet Watts, Eloise Pasteur, Desideria Stockton, Foe Hammerer)