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Undergraduate English Courses

359:210 Writing as a Way of Life

01  TF3   CAC   18417   DIENST  SC-221

What do writers do when they write? What do readers do when they read? If you stop and think about it, it’s not really obvious that we can answer these questions. This course will explore what people actually *do* when they read and write. We will pay special attention to letters, diaries, journals, and other kinds of everyday writing. We will try to pose theoretical questions in a creative way, experimenting with different modes of writing and reflecting on our own practices of reading. The syllabus will include some famous scribblers (Montaigne, Thoreau, Woolf); we’ll also read what some theorists (Benjamin, Burke, Sloterdijk) have said about literary practices. Finally, we’ll read some contemporary authors (Solnit, Dyer) who show us what readers and writers can do now.

The course will require everyone to write throughout the semester. The exact organization of that writing requirement—whether it will take the form of journals, letters, blogs, essays, and/or other things—will be negotiated in class. This course is designed for people who like to read and write as a regular part of their lives.

This course fulfills the Theory requirement for the English major, and counts as an Arts and Humanities course  (AHo) in the Core Curriculum.