These courses are offered periodically with varying content: examinations of craft and form, reading and writing in specific areas, such as the prose poem, short story, memoir, biography, hybrid forms, or approaches to creative writing not otherwise provided in the workshop format. Course requirements will typically include a mix of creative and critical work. Enrollment is limited to 18. Dist: ART, pending faculty approval. CA tag Creative Writing.
This term, English 89 will be offered as "Raising the Dead" at the 2A hour with Professor Sharlet
How can we practice "immersion journalism," as creative nonfiction is sometimes described, when writing about people and events of the past? In this creative nonfiction writing course, we'll immerse ourselves in the kind of research that will allow us to recreate moments and moods for which we couldn't be present. We'll become witnesses at a remove; and, through careful attention to our own roles in the construction of our stories, participant-observers, as well. We'll learn how to use archives; make creative use of documents and artifacts; engage with scholarly historical writing as a source for creative writing; and interrogate our assumptions about research and representation, all in the service of character-driven narratives as vivid, nuanced, and dramatic as writing based on contemporary fieldwork. This course is an attempt to raise the dead, to resurrect truths from dormant facts, to find stories of the present within the past. You'll write two short nonfiction stories, of a person and a place, based on secondary sources, and one long narrative based on original research. The texts we'll be reading, by Lauren Redniss, John D'Agata, Svetlana Alexievitch, Joe Sacco, Maggie Nelson, and Michael Lesy, among others, varies radically in form and medium, as may your own experimental nonfictions. Instructor permission required. DIST: ART, pending faculty approval. CA tag Creative Writing.