ENGLISH 325 - Art of the Essay
Fall 2022, Section 006 - Creative Non-Fiction
Instruction Mode: Section 006 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: English Language and Literature (ENGLISH)
Department: LSA English Language & Literature
See additional student enrollment and course instructor information to guide you in your decision making.

Details

Credits:
3
Requirements & Distribution:
ULWR
Waitlist Capacity:
unlimited
Consent:
With permission of instructor.
Advisory Prerequisites:
Completion of the First-Year Writing Requirement.
Other Course Info:
F, W, Sp, Su.
Repeatability:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Description

“Try to be one of the people on whom nothing is lost!” --Henry James 

This course asks of you what James asks of you: to be curious about not only the world around you but also your interior world, and to make something of your curiosity on the page, for what we write down is never lost. All writing starts with a question or a hypothesis. You’ve had them—questions and hypotheses—haven’t you? Maybe it’s a family story that has several versions: what is being left out? Why? What really happened? And how might you use your experience in service of the pursuit of larger ideas? Or perhaps you have a theory about social media and how it’s changing relationships. Drawing upon your own experiences, how might you begin to explore and develop a theory, test it out on the page? What research might you want to conduct? Or maybe you’ve always wondered if you could get out of a locked trunk. What if you tried it? What might you learn? What could you pass along to the reader? 

“All thought is a feat of association; having what’s in front of you bring up something in your mind that you almost didn’t know you knew.” --Robert Frost 

The real value of this course, you will discover, is not so much in the final grade as in our endeavor to pursue such questions and theories on the page with diligence, creativity and flourish, to explore an interior world filled with things, to quote Frost, “you almost didn’t know you knew.” As you can see, in this course we are moving beyond the skills you’ve encountered in other writing courses, pushing past literary analysis or position papers into the realm of creative non-fiction. While skills from your previous writing classes are certainly transferable—structure, developing organizing ideas, accuracy, economy or language, research—this class will pair these skills with new ones germane to the craft of creative non-fiction—narrative, description, emotional resonance, theme, etc. In so doing, you will engage with questions about people, places, ideas and objects, questions that may have been stirring inside you for some time now. But there are no easy answers. Bear in mind that as we explore questions on the page, the aim is to pursue truth, not so much to arrive at an absolute truth. The former intention acknowledges complexity and depth, a certain form of respect for the idea, whereas the latter more often than not ends up feeling didactic or forced. Acknowledge the complexity, engage with it; readers respect this. After all, when a writer pursues a question or theory, it is often not so much to discover an absolute truth, but rather to move readers closer to a truth. The exploration has value. To find yourself on a voyage of discovery is one of the real joys of writing; to be invited along is one of the joys of reading. 

Schedule

ENGLISH 325 - Art of the Essay
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
 In Person
11184
Open
2
 
-
TuTh 4:00PM - 5:30PM
002 (SEM)
  Hybrid
11185
Open
1
 
-
MW 11:30AM - 1:00PM
003 (SEM)
 In Person
11186
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 1:00PM - 2:30PM
004 (SEM)
 In Person
14165
Open
1
 
-
TuTh 2:30PM - 4:00PM
005 (SEM)
 In Person
16178
Open
1
 
-
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM
006 (SEM)
 In Person
16207
Open
2
 
-
MW 4:00PM - 5:30PM
007 (SEM)
 In Person
16675
Closed
0
 
-
MW 8:30AM - 10:00AM
008 (SEM)
  Hybrid
16676
Closed
0
 
-
MW 5:30PM - 7:00PM
009 (SEM)
 In Person
16677
Closed
0
 
-
MW 1:00PM - 2:30PM
010 (SEM)
 In Person
16678
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 5:30PM - 7:00PM
011 (SEM)
 In Person
16679
Open
1
 
-
MW 10:00AM - 11:30AM
012 (SEM)
 In Person
21343
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 10:00AM - 11:30AM
013 (SEM)
 In Person
26127
Closed
0
 
-
TuTh 2:30PM - 4:00PM

Textbooks/Other Materials

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Syllabi

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CourseProfile (Atlas)

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CourseProfile (Atlas)