An experimental version of the traditional scholarly methods course was designed to raise students' consciousness about the usefulness of traditional learning for any modern critic or theorist. To minimize the artificial aspects of the conventional course, the usual procedure of assigning a large number of small problems drawn from the entire range of historical periods was abandoned, though this procedure has the obvious advantage of at least superficially familiarizing students with a wide range of reference sources. Instead, students were engaged in a collective effort to do original work on a neglected eighteenth-century writer, Elizabeth Griffith, to give them an authentic experience of literary scholarship and to inspire them to take responsibility for the quality of their own work. Griffith's work presented a number of advantages for this particular pedagogical purpose. The body of extant scholarship on Griffith was so tiny that it could all be read in a day. In addition, because Griffith was successful in the eighteenth century, her exclusion from the canon and virtual disappearance from literary history also helped raise issues concerning the current canon.