AAS 495 - Senior Seminar
Section: 002 Exploring Creative Non-Fiction Through an Intersectional Lens
Term: WN 2018
Subject: Afroamerican & African Studies (AAS)
Department: LSA Afroamerican and African Studies
Requirements & Distribution:
With permission of instructor.
Lab Fee:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Upperclass standing.
Other Course Info:
(Cross-Area Courses). (Capstone Course).
May be repeated for a maximum of 8 credit(s).
Primary Instructor:

Creative non-fiction is definitely having its moment. Contemporary writers are sharing their personal experiences through an astonishing array of forms: memoirs, lyric essays, prose poems, blogs, collages, found essays, braided narratives, listicles, hybrid forms, and flash essays. In this course, we’ll explore the current heyday of creative nonfiction through an intersectional lens, focusing on writings by African American women and other women of color. As we read the work of published authors and experiment with using these authors’ strategies in our own writing, we’ll pay particular attention to questions such as the following:

Why are we drawn to share stories about our personal experiences?
In what ways can narratives about individual experience open up dialogue about larger social, cultural, and political issues? What makes it difficult to discern the broader significance of particular personal narratives?
Whose experiences count as stories worth telling and hearing? Throughout U.S. history, what roles have race, gender, sexuality, class, nationality, religion, and embodiment played in legitimizing or silencing various kinds of stories?
What roles can creativity play in writers’ efforts to convey fact-based experience?
What strategies do various authors use to craft the “I” of their narratives?
What strategies do authors use to position themselves as insiders or outsiders when writing about particular communities? What ethical, political, conceptual, and craft-level challenges do various writers face in positioning themselves as qualified to speak about their subject matter?
What is the relationship between form and content in various writers’ works? How can a writer’s choice of form enhance her ability to convey content?
What are the affordances and limitations of particular forms for telling different kinds of stories?
What roles does humor play in various writers’ efforts to address emotionally charged personal and/or political content?
What makes writing beautiful, meaningful, memorable, and moving?

Please note: You must attend the first two class meetings to remain enrolled in this class.

Intended Audience:

No data submitted

Class Format:

No data submitted

AAS 495 - Senior Seminar
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM
002 (SEM)
MW 10:00AM - 11:30AM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

Coursepack Location:
to be announced
Dear Members of 495, I will provide additional information about the coursepack on the first day of class. In the meantime, please purchase hard copies of the specific editions listed below. Because we'll frequently refer to our texts during class, it will be very important for everyone to have hard copies of the same editions. Thanks, and see you soon!
ISBN: 1555976905
Citizen : an american lyric., Publisher: Graywolf 2014
ISBN: 1609381602
The fluency of light : coming of age in a theater of black and white, Author: Aisha Sabatini Sloan., Publisher: University of Iowa Press 2013
Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

Click the button below to view historical syllabi for AAS 495 (UM login required)

View Historical Syllabi
The CourseProfile (ART) system, supported by the U-M Provost’s 3rd Century Initiative through a grant to the Office of Academic Innovation, provides additional information about: course enrollments; academic terms and instructors; student academic profiles (school/college, majors), and previous, concurrent, and subsequent course enrollments.

CourseProfile (ART)