Writing Seminars

http://writingseminars.jhu.edu/

The Writing Seminars exists to help students combine imaginative writing with scholarship in the general context of the humanities.

Requirements for a B.A. degree

Also see Requirements for a Bachelor's Degree

AS.220.105 Fiction/Poetry Writing I and AS.220.106 Fiction/Poetry Writing II are prerequisite courses required for all majors and others who want to take advanced courses in writing.  Majors must receive a grade of C- or better in all courses required for the major and no major requirements may be taken satisfactory/unsatisfactory.  

AS.220.105Fiction/Poetry Writing I3
AS.220.106Fiction/Poetry Writing II3
Four courses of English literature. *12
Two courses in philosophy. It is recommended that one course be a Philosophy Department introductory course. 6
Two courses in history. Majors are encouraged to take one history survey course in the History Department. May include one course from History of Art or from History of Science and Technology.6
AS.220.200Introduction to Fiction3
AS.220.201Introduction to Poetry3
One fiction course at the 300-400 level.3
One poetry course at the 300-400 level.3
One advanced writing workshop.3
Three elective courses at the 200-400 level within the department.9
Foreign language proficiency through the second semester of the intermediate level is required.

*

Expository Writing may not apply towards the English literature requirement.


Honors

A GPA of 3.5 or better in all major requirements is required to earn honors in the major.

The Writing Seminars offers a Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) in fiction and poetry. Students admitted to the M.F.A. program enroll in two years of course work and produce a substantial manuscript in the form of a novel or collection of fiction or poetry. M.F.A. candidates are chosen on the basis of a manuscript, college transcripts, GRE scores, and appropriate letters of recommendation that testify to the student’s ability and willingness to undertake serious study in the literary arts. Since all students receive financial aid in the form of full tuition and a teaching assistantship, applicants must be able to demonstrate aptitude for college teaching.

The program requires two full years of residency in Baltimore. Students enroll each semester in two courses: a writing workshop in poetry or fiction and a second course in craft or literature taught within the department. At the end of the first year, students present a portfolio of revised work for faculty review. Successful completion of this work is a requirement for continuation in the second year.

The M.F.A. degree in The Writing Seminars is designed for students committed to the study and practice of literary writing at the highest level of accomplishment. Approximately five poets and five fiction writers will be admitted annually. Our pedagogy emphasizes genre-informed discussions, faculty conferences, independent readings, and interactions with visiting writers. Culminating in a book-length thesis, this immersion in literary study is designed to inculcate the habits and skills necessary for a productive writer’s life.

Students applying to the M.F.A. program should have a bachelor’s degree. All must demonstrate competence in a foreign language at the college level.

For current course information and registration go to https://isis.jhu.edu/classes/

Courses

AS.220.101. Narrative Medicine. 3 Credits.

In this course, we'll explore the new field of narrative medicine. What role does storytelling play in medicine? How can studying the literature of illness and healing result in better patient care? Students will read and discuss a variety of narratives authored by both patients and physicians, from short stories to personal essays to poems. They will also examine research on the impact of narrative training on clinical practice, and meet guest speakers from the local medical community. Finally, students will craft their own essays and fiction and receive feedback in a workshop setting.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.105. Fiction/Poetry Writing I. 3 Credits.

A course in realist fiction and traditional verse, with readings in Eudora Welty, Vladimir Nabokov, Henry James, Robert Frost, Paul Fussell, John Gardner, Seamus Heane, and Gwendolyn Brooks. This first course for writers is a study of forms of short fiction and metered verse. Students compose short stories and poems; includes practice of critical attention to literary models and workshop of student writing. This course is a prerequisite for most upper level courses. This course is part one of the year-long Introduction to Fiction and Poetry, and must be taken before AS.220.106.
Instructor(s): Staff
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.106. Fiction/Poetry Writing II. 3 Credits.

The second half of IFP, a course in counter-traditional antirealist fiction and free verse (Emily Dickinson, Virginia Woolf, Elizabeth Bishop, Franz Kafka, Italo Calvino, and William Carlos Williams). This course is a prerequisite for most upper level courses.
Prerequisites: AS.220.105
Instructor(s): A. Allen; C. Siskel; S. Robinson
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.108. Introduction to Fiction & Nonfiction. 3 Credits.

A course in realist fiction and nonfiction, with readings by Eudora Welty, Vladimir Nabokov, Henry James; George Orwell, Beryl Markham and Truman Capote. Students compose short stories and essays with attention to literary models. AS.220.105 can be substituted for AS.220.108.
Instructor(s): J. Cavanaugh-Simpson
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.112. The Problems with Myth: Mythology in 20th Century Literature. 3 Credits.

This course examines how and why important 20th century writers reinterpreted ancient myths to explore modern themes of ennui, violence, and the absurd hero. We begin with classical authors then jump to those of the 20th century: for example, Louise Glück, James Joyce, Albert Camus, and Eugene O'Neill. In addition to reading literature and essays, students write original poems and sketches in order to understand how mythic narratives continue to satisfy the modern voice.
Instructor(s): R. Oh
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.115. Mitchell, Fitzgerald, and American Class Identity. 3 Credits.

English General Banastre Tarleton was reviled throughout the American South for his extreme brutality during the War of American Independence. Why, then, did Margaret Mitchell select Tarleton as the surname for the twin brothers who are courting the Southern belle Scarlett O'Hara in Gone with the Wind? Did Mitchell intend the name both as an historical reference, and as a literary reference? In four short stories, F. Scott Fitzgerald used the fictional town of Tarleton, Georgia as the backdrop for his disparagement of the notion that social integration was desirable—much less even possible. Did Mitchell conceive her novel as a counterweight to Fitzgerald's depictions of the futility of attempts at class mobility—not only in those stories, but also in The Great Gatsby? What's at stake in the commitment to resisting or promoting class fluidity? How does Mitchell's debate with Fitzgerald illustrate the role social standing plays in modern America?
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.118. Plagues and Pandemics in Literature. 3 Credits.

All plagues seem to begin in mystery: What is happening? Why? Who can we blame? What needs to change? How we react to these questions in the midst of a mass disaster has fascinated writers for centuries. Looking to literature, this class will examine pandemics ranging from the Black Death to Influenza to HIV/AIDS. We will also discuss vampires, zombies, and laboratory experiments gone disastrously wrong. Students will write their own poems and short stories.
Instructor(s): P. Kirkpatrick
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.120. Musical Theater: History and Lyrics, from Guys & Dolls to Glee. 3 Credits.

This course examines the history of musical theater, from Gilbert and Sullivan to Hammerstein to Sondheim, in all its forms: stage, film, live actions, cartoons, and jukebox musicals. We will watch films in class, including CAROUSEL, GUYS & DOLLS, SOUND OF MUSIC, SWEENEY TODD, RENT, ACROSS THE UNIVERSE, GLEE episodes, and more. Students write lyrics and imitations, and a short paper on a favorite lyricist. Optional field trips to DC and Baltimore theaters to see musicals live.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.125. Short Fiction of David Foster Wallace. 3 Credits.

In this course we will explore David Foster Wallace's shorter fiction with an eye towards the philosophical questions raised therein: How can we be authentic when the self is a social construct? How do we escape solipsism while remaining aware of our helpless subjectivity? How do we feel empathy while acknowledging irony? Is it impossible to escape the self, or is that just me? Recommended Course Background: AS.220.105
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.138. Make 'Em Laugh. 3 Credits.

The quickest way to kill a joke is to explain it. So how do we learn to be funny? In this class, we’ll explore techniques in humor writing. Whether poking holes in accepted absurdities or helping us laugh at death, humor makes us smile and think. Each week, we’ll focus on a different type of humor—dark comedy, satire, etc.—through stories, nonfiction, criticism, and author interviews. Students will write imitations and original work.
Instructor(s): G. Kirby
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.146. Introduction to Science Writing. 3 Credits.

Science writing is science written in plain English and told as a story. Students research, write, edit others, rewrite. They also analyze published stories for structure, substance, accessibility, and clarity.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.148. Portraits of the Artists: Writing Self in Fiction. 3 Credits.

Flannery O’Connor once said “Anybody who has survived his childhood has enough information about life to last him the rest of his days.” Fiction is a carefully hewn combination of memory and imagination, and while it is impossible to know how much of the literary canon is sourced in autobiography, the truism holds firm: people write what they know. In this course, we will focus on modern and contemporary autobiographical fiction, looking closely at source, creative process, craft, and style, in order to answer the essential question, How does a writer successfully roll fact into fiction? Students will complete writing activities and participate in discussions and workshops. They will produce either an autobiographical story, or the first chapter of a longer work. Novels: Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Joyce; The Bell Jar, Plath; The Lover, Duras. Stories by Hemingway, Updike, Munro, O'Brien, Casey.
Instructor(s): J. Slovak
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.149. Introduction to Formal Poetry. 3 Credits.

Robert Frost said writing free verse is like playing tennis with the net down. This course will focus on the supporting structures of poetry—such as meter and rhyme—and provide students with the opportunity to study, write, and workshop a variety of verse-forms including the villanelle, ghazal, and sestina. In addition to selections from Paul Fussell’s Poetic Meter & Poetic Form, students will read a range of formal poems. By the end of the course, students will understand Frost's insight, and, having practiced the art of meter, be better prepared to write “free verse.”
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.150. Steal This Book. 3 Credits.

From Spike Lee to The Clash, art can wield immense influence on our worldview. This class will explore the intersection of social critique and American literature. Class texts will also include a range of pertinent films, documentaries, and popular music. We'll examine the social utility of art and how artists use their craft to make a statement. Classwork includes Blackboard posts on current events, weekly creative writing assignments, and a final portfolio of creative work.
Instructor(s): J. Takacs
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.152. Words of Light: Poetry and Photography. 3 Credits.

This class will focus on poetry's relationship to time and the visual. Students will read a body of poetry and criticism (essays by Walter Benjamin, Susan Sontag, Penelope Pelizzon, et al.) looking at how the descriptive nature of lyric poetry is fundamentally related to photography -- more closely related to photography, in fact, than poetry is to painting or sculpture. In addition to bringing a worthwhile discussion of the readings to each class, students will submit one original poem and one original photo each week for credit. "IFP 1 preferred.
Instructor(s): S. Greer
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.153. Writing from Art. 3 Credits.

In this course, students will engage with ekphrastic writing across genres. Using poetry, fiction, and personal essays inspired by Joseph Cornell's boxes as an entry point, we will consider how writers engage with other forms of art. Students will develop and workshop each others responses. Readings include Charles Simic, William Gibson, Mark Doty, and selections from Jonathan Safran Foer's anthology of Cornell-based writing, "A Convergence of Birds.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.175. Introduction to Creative Writing: Chaos and Order in Literature. 3 Credits.

In this literature and creative writing course, we'll consider the ways in which the ideas of "chaos" and "order" implicitly or explicitly shape literature. From Greek tragedy to "fractal" poetry, from Shakespeare's landscapes to the Deep South and Wild West, we will investigate humans' essential and paradoxical relationship with the unknown. We will experiment with chaotic and structured forms in our own poems, stories and essays to explore these fundamental themes.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.176. Poetry and the Visual Arts. 3 Credits.

This course will examine the interplay between poetry and the visual arts. We will look at poems inspired by great paintings and sculptures and vice versa: paintings and sculptures inspired by great poems. We will also explore ekphrasis in both poetry and painting. The course will include field trips to local museums and poetry writing workshops.
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.182. The American Political Novel. 3 Credits.

An examination of several major American authors who engaged some of the most controversial political issues of their day: race relations and the role of the federal government in enforcing civil rights. We’ll explore a chain of literary influence that stretches from the early 1850s to the late 1990s. How did Robert Penn Warren conceive All the King’s Men (a fictional account of Louisiana’s governor and senator Huey Long) as a response to Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn, and William Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom!? And how, in turn, did Joe Klein conceive Primary Colors (a fictional account of Arkansas’s governor Bill Clinton) as a response to All the King’s Men? We’ll also consider Billy Lee Brammer’s The Gay Place (a fictional account of Texas’s senator Lyndon Johnson).
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.184. Writers Who Act / Actors Who Write: Introduction to Writing for Solo Performance. 3 Credits.

Students write, develop, and perform their own solo performance pieces. Monologue forms investigated: interview-based documentary, autobiography, fiction. Writing exercises and in-class critiques. Works analyzed: Anna Deveare Smith, Doug Wright, Dario Fo, Mel Brooks, Richard Pryor, Moises Kaufman, films where one actor plays many roles (Kind Hearts & Coronets, Dr. Strangelove, Monty Python's Holy Grail, etc.) Field trips: one-man show at Everyman Theatre, slam poetry, stand-up comedy, cabaret. Culminating showcase of student work. No acting experience necessary.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.186. The American Poem. 3 Credits.

This course will examine the broad family tree of American poetry, from Whitman and Dickinson to the present day. We will focus on several poets of the 20th century as exemplars of major trends and/or instigators of change over the last hundred years, and we will seek to chart their influences. Through our own poems and essays, we will enter into a conversation with the myriad voices that have composed the poem in America.
Instructor(s): S. Lackaye
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.187. Songwriting: The Poetry of Music. 3 Credits.

We will investigate song as both inherent in poetry and as a possible vehicle for it, focusing on the lyricist's particular challenges and possible techniques. We'll look at what makes Goethe's poetry attractive to a musician like Schubert, and what Bob Dylan's lyrics share with those of Keats and Shakespeare. We'll follow the tradition of forms like the ballad and the blues song, and compose a few of our own.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.195. Fitzgerald's Short Stories. 3 Credits.

An examination of F. Scott Fitzgerald's major short stories in the 1920s and 1930s. We'll analyze Fitzgerald's commitment to exploring the tension between two opposing intellectual movements: literary naturalism (which championed the primacy of environmental determinism) and literary realism (which championed the primacy of free will). We'll trace Fitzgerald's mercurial loyalty to each movement: his abandonment of one school of thought for the other, from one year to the next. In "May Day" he even embraced both movements equally—testimony to his belief that "the test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function". Did Fitzgerald ultimately advocate one school of thought over the other? Or, did he intend simply to stage the debate between them?
Instructor(s): J. Rockefeller V
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.200. Introduction to Fiction. 3 Credits.

Study in the reading and writing of short narrative with focus on basic technique: subject, narrative voice, character, sense of an ending, etc. Students will write weekly sketches, present story analyses in class, and workshop one finished story. Selected parallel readings from such models of the form as Henry James, Anton Chekov, James Joyce, John Cheever, Alice Munro, and others. Permission Required. (Formerly AS.220.191.)
Prerequisites: AS.220.105 and AS.220.106
Instructor(s): G. Blake; K. Noel; R. Roper; T. Davies
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.201. Introduction to Poetry. 3 Credits.

A study of the fundamentals and strategies of poetry writing. This course combines analysis and discussion of traditional models of poetry with workshop critiques of student poems and student conferences with the instructor. Permission Required. (Formerly AS.220.141.)
Prerequisites: AS.220.105 AND AS.220.106
Instructor(s): D. Malech; G. Williamson
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.202. Introduction to Non-Fiction: Matters of Fact. 3 Credits.

A first course in nonfiction writing, emphasizing how facts can be woven into narrative forms to portray verifiable, rather than imagined, people and events. Students read and discuss model works, then write frequent papers to refine their own style. (Formerly AS.220.145.)
Instructor(s): W. Biddle
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.203. Introduction to Science Writing. 3 Credits.

Instructor(s): A. Bohac; E. Gray
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.204. Introduction to Dramatic Writing: Film. 3 Credits.

An examination of the screenplay as a literary text and blueprint for production. Professional screenplays will be critically analyzed, with focus on character, dialogue, plot development, conflict, pacing, dramatic foreshadowing, the element of surprise, text and subtext, and visual story-telling. Students write one complete script. Formerly AS.220.342.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.205. Introduction to Dramatic Writing: Plays. 3 Credits.

Instructor(s): M. Lapadula
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.206. Becoming a Science Journalist. 3 Credits.

This course is designed to teach students the skills of daily science news reporting. The focus is on turning complex scientific information into lively prose for the general public. Lectures will cover such topics as how to compose news “ledes,” how to get great quotes, how to find stories, and how best to interact with researchers and outside experts. Scientists from Johns Hopkins, University of Maryland, and other local institutions will present their latest research to the class. Students will ask questions, as journalists would, at a news conference. Students will convert these talks into news stories, which will be critiqued in class. As a final project, students will be asked to write a daily news story of their own devising. Please note that a brief writing test is required for this course. To schedule this test, please contact the instructor at dgrimm5@jhu.edu .
Instructor(s): D. Grimm
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.209. Poetic Symbols: Past and Future. 3 Credits.

Poetic Symbols: Past and Future. In this course we will trace the lineages of familiar poetic symbols, or tropes, that have occurred centrally and with regularity in literary history. We will investigate how they evolve with time and reveal changing styles and sensibilities from author to author and age to age. That’s the past. The future is the next poem you will write as the assignment for each of the symbols we read. Recommended Course background: AS.220.105
Instructor(s): G. Williamson
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.210. Introduction to Non-Fiction: Science as a Social Activity. 3 Credits.

Using the political and economic milieu of science and technology as a context for our writing, we will study how social factors such as government, money, secrecy, and ethics affect the conduct and public presentation of scientific and medical research. Controversies from 20th century history as well as current events will be discussed. Writing assignments to satisfy the W requirement will consist of short papers derived from classroom topics.
Instructor(s): W. Biddle
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.303. Intermediate Dramatic Writing: Plays. 3 Credits.

Intensive workshop development of one play by each student. Repeatable for credit with permission of instructor. Permission Required.
Prerequisites: Prerequisite AS.220.205
Instructor(s): M. Lapadula
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.309. Writing Healthy Baltimore. 3 Credits.

Students will explore public health issues in Baltimore and then write about them first in short pieces, and then in longer, polished works. The framework will be the mayor’s Healthy Baltimore 2015 initiative – launched in 2011 to address the city’s top-10 public health problems, including obesity, smoking, drug and alcohol abuse, STDs, cancer, and environmental health hazards. Students will study the initiative and its historical context; examine data sets; explore where and how the initiative intersects with public health practitioners and advocacy groups at the neighborhood level; and write what they learn in different formats, including essays, breaking news, and substance analysis. Students will then “workshop” each other’s papers.
Instructor(s): K. Masterson
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.310. Intermediate Fiction: Nature Writing. 3 Credits.

Our central text will be Thoreau's "Walden". Most of our readings will be American, though we will read excerpts from Lucretius and Darwin. We will examine various ways in which the natural world has been depicted in nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. Students will write critical papers on nature writers as well as to do creative nature writing of their own. Our authors may include: Emerson, Rachel Carson, Loren Eiseley, John Updike, Robert Frost, Donald Culross Peattie.
Instructor(s): B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.311. Intermediate Fiction: Point of View. 3 Credits.

A consideration of not just the obvious point-of-view choices writers face - first person or third? one perspective or many? - but also questions of reliability and distance. Reading may include Chekhov, Faulkner, Nabokov, Munro, Diaz, and others. Students will write and workshop their own short stories.
Instructor(s): R. Puchner
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.316. Seminar: Opinion Writing. 3 Credits.

The study of exposition and argument in literary prose, with exposure to journalistic practices. Instructor will assign topics on which students write essays and subsequently discuss in class and critique for style, grammar, coherence, and effectiveness. Permission required.
Instructor(s): J. Cavanaugh-Simpson
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.319. Intermediate: Nonfiction/Nonfact. 3 Credits.

Instructor(s): W. Biddle
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.320. Intermediate Poetry: Poetics. 3 Credits.

A study of how to read poetry closely and how to write critical prose about it. Readings in the course may include T.S. Eliot, Robert Frost, John Crowe Ransome, W.H. Auden, Robert Lowell, Randall Jarrell, and others. Completion of Introduction to Poetry required.
Prerequisites: AS.220.201
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.324. Intermediate Fiction: Landscape & Setting. 3 Credits.

An intermediate fiction workshop focusing on the question of place. We'll read 19th, 20th, and 21st century short fiction (including some set in Baltimore) in which setting strongly affects plot. While we'll talk about each story holistically, we'll also spend time discussing how authors make the physical world feel three-dimensional, and how place can lean on--even change--what happens in a story. Students will write stories and exercises, including exercises that involve exploring Baltimore in order to observe and write about the city in which we live.
Instructor(s): K. Noel
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.325. Intermediate Fiction: Story and Plot. 3 Credits.

The study of plot, with questions, both practical and theoretical, inevitably raised by the short story form. Readings in Chekhov, James, O'Connor, Cheever, Joyce, and Hemingway.
Instructor(s): K. Noel
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.327. Intermediate Fiction: Characters. 3 Credits.

A study of fictional persons in works by Fitzgerald, Joyce, W.C. Williams, and Rilke. Students write sketches and compose at least one complete story.
Instructor(s): T. Davies
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.328. Intermediate Fiction: Narrative Voice. 3 Credits.

Instructor(s): J. McGarry
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.329. Intermediate Fiction: Forming The Short Story. 3 Credits.

Readings in the first hundred years of the short story in the Western tradition. Authors include Hoffmann, Kleist, Pushkin, Gogoi, Turgenev, Maupassant, James, Chekhov, and Wharton. Numerous pastiches will be assigned.
Instructor(s): T. Davies
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.331. Intermediate Fiction: Forms of Fiction. 3 Credits.

A look at some non-realistic methods, in stories and novels, for dealing with the "real world." Students will write one page excercises and short stories. Permission Required.
Instructor(s): T. Davies
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.332. Writing Central Baltimore. 3 Credits.

A workshop in writing about a single geographical area, in this case the amalgamated districts popularly known as Central Baltimore. Subjects will include the area history, demographics, and future. Research and a series of written projects will be required, including both individual and group work.
Prerequisites: AS.220.105 and AS.220.106 and AS.220.200
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.333. Intermediate Fiction: The Anatomy. 3 Credits.

Registration Restrictions: Permission Required. A workshop with readings in encyclopedic fictional forms. Authors will include Petronius, Robert Burton, and Joyce. Numerous sketches to be assigned including the exploration of digital media.
Prerequisites: AS.220.200
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.334. Intermediate Fiction: Indexed Fiction. 3 Credits.

A course in fiction writing that utilizes a wiki environment. Students will write and maintain multiple fictional data sets, read and edit other students’ work in the same, and coordinate and interlink their sets with the goal of creating a collaborative web-based fiction.
Prerequisites: AS.220.200
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.335. Intermediate Fiction: Fiction and Fact. 3 Credits.

Perm. Req’d. A workshop in fictions that are “on” something, that is: fictions that take as their organizing principal the consideration of some material or intellectual subject. Readings will include famous examples of the anatomical form as well as writings in contemporary metaphysics.
Instructor(s): T. Davies
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.337. Intermediate Dramatic Writing: Film. 3 Credits.

An intensive workshop focusing on methodology: enhancing original characterization, plot development, conflict, story, pacing, dramatic foreshadowing, the element of surprise, text and subtext, act structure, and visual storytelling. Each student is expected to present sections of his/her "screenplay-in-progress" to the class for discussion. The screenplay Chinatown will be used as a basic text.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.339. Seminar: Science Stories. 3 Credits.

Science Stories is designed to teach students the skills of daily science news reporting and writing. Lectures will cover topics such as how to write news ledes, how to get great quotes, how to find stories, and how best to interact with researchers and outside experts. Every other week, scientists from local institutions will present their latest research to the class. Students ask questions and are given a week to write up a daily news story, which is workshopped during the following class. As a final project, students will be asked to find and write a daily news story on their own.
Prerequisites: AS.220.146 or 220.203 or permission of instructor
Instructor(s): D. Grimm
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.344. Intermediate Fiction: The Short-Short Story. 3 Credits.

A consideration of the short-short story. Students will weekly present in the short-short story form. We will read the following anthologies: Short Shorts, Flash Fiction, Micro Fiction, and Sudden Fiction.
Prerequisites: AS.220.200
Instructor(s): G. Blake
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.345. Intermediate Fiction: Alternative Fictions. 3 Credits.

Instructor(s): B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.351. Intermediate Fiction: Forms of International Fiction. 3 Credits.

A course which reads fiction written by leading innovators in form such as, but not limited to, Franz Kafka, Jorge Luis Borges, Angela Carter, Amos Oz, Italo Calvino, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, A.S. Byatt, Margarett Atwood, Ian McEwan. Students will write variations of the forms of fiction.
Prerequisites: AS.220.200
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.368. Intermediate Fiction: Contemporary American Fiction. 3 Credits.

This seminar will examine how three schools of American fiction address the fate of linear narrative in the late 20th century. Permission required.
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.376. Intermediate Fiction: Outdoor Stories. 3 Credits.

Students will write sketches and stories, in a class organized around readings in classic texts of wilderness encounter. Hawthorne, Tolstoy, Hemingway, Faulkner, Styron, Cormac McCarthy, Kate Chopin, Melville, McGuane, Conrad. Permission Required.
Instructor(s): R. Roper
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.377. Intermediate Poetry: Poetic Forms. 3 Credits.

A consideration of a variety of poetic forms and conventions, analysis and discussion of characteristic approaches, with a balance of workshop of student poems. Admission requires completion of Introduction to Poetry. Permission Required.
Instructor(s): G. Williamson
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.378. Poetic Forms II. 3 Credits.

The course builds on the information and techniques encountered in Poetic Forms I, and uses them in reading and imitating a range of contemporary poets. Permission Required.
Instructor(s): G. Williamson
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.380. Intermediate Fiction: The Scene. 3 Credits.

Emphasis in writing scenes-the building blocks of fiction-units of action, units of dialogue. Readings will include the stories of Chekhov, Cheever, Hemingway, and Carver. Recommended Course Background: AS.220.200
Instructor(s): G. Blake
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.382. Intermediate Poetry: Narrative Strategies in Poetry Writing. 3 Credits.

Before a poem is anything else, it is the hint, implication, outline, or raw matter of a story, that fundamental human-making shape of expression. Story-writing is learned behavior and its alternative approaches are the makers of form and vision, of communication that is worth re-experiencing, or not. In this course we consider how poets have written narratives and how today's poets continue to do so. We will read one book of poems by each of eight contemporary poets who will visit the class, including Pulitzer Prize winners Claudia Emerson and Stephen Dunn, and discuss narrative strategies with these poets. Students will then write a poem "imitating" each visitor and we will workshop the poems on next class meeting after the visit. There will also be short response papers and a final essay (or examination--the student's choice).
Instructor(s): D. Smith
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.383. Intermediate Fiction: The 20th Century. 3 Credits.

We will look at modern American novellas. Authors will include: Henry James, Edith Wharton, Katherine Anne Porter, John Updike, Steven Milhauser, Truman Capote, Elizabeth Spencer. Frequent short writing assignments, to be discussed in workshop.
Instructor(s): B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.384. Intermediate Nonfiction: I, Me, Mine: American Autobiography. 3 Credits.

The class will read and discuss classic autobiographical texts by Benjamin Franklin, Frederick Douglass, Henry Thoreau, Henry Adams, Gertrude Stein, Malcolm X, and others. Students will write and workshop their own life stories of substantial length.
Instructor(s): W. Biddle
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.387. Intermediate Poetry: The Poet as Observer. 3 Credits.

A workshop course with readings and writing assignments that emphasize the artistic value of the outward gaze. Students will keep a daily journal of observations, and over the semester will develop those observations into at least 10 new poems. Course readings will include work by Rainer Maria Rilke, Elizabeth Bishop, and Theodore Roethke. Permission Required.
Instructor(s): J. Arthur
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.389. Intermediate Poetry: The Dramatic Element. 3 Credits.

This course will explore the dramatic mode of poetry, from the plays of the Greeks and Shakespeare to the lyric poems of Hardy, Yeats, Frost, Brooks, Hecht, and others. Weekly writing assignments, suggested by the readings, will include character monologues, dialogue, conflict, and other aspects of the dramatic lyric. Student poems will be discussed in a workshop format.
Instructor(s): D. Yezzi
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.391. Performing Poetry & Fiction: An Acting Workshop for Writers. 3 Credits.

This hands-on performance workshop, combining literary and theatrical practice, will look closely at what makes a performance or reading compelling, clear, and resonant. Through textual analysis, vocal technique, and group discussion, students will create a pliant and powerful reading style to best serve their work. The course includes regular writing assignments in poetry or fiction and weekly performance and group discussion.
Instructor(s): D. Yezzi
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.392. Intermediate Poetry: Tall Tales and Short on Narrative Poetry. 3 Credits.

Tall Tales and Short: On Narrative Poetry. Many of the most resonant and influential stories in history have been told in verse—The Iliad, The Aeneid, Beowulf, The Divine Comedy, The Prelude. This course will examine narrative poems—from Homer to the present, both long and short—with an eye toward how they function formally and generically. Students will adapt an array age-old storytelling techniques for their own poems. There will be weekly writing assignments in poetry and group discussion of student writing.
Instructor(s): D. Yezzi
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.393. Intermediate Poetry: Poets in Conversation. 3 Credits.

An exploration of poetic process as ongoing discourse within and across generations. Readings, writing assignments, and in-class workshop of student poems will encourage and enable course participants to join the conversation themselves.
Instructor(s): D. Malech
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.397. Intermediate Poetry: The Lyric. 3 Credits.

What is a lyric poem in the 21st Century? What causes such a thing? What does it sound like? What is it good for? Who writes them? We will. By reading lyric poems written over the last 500 years in English, and by writing our own original work we will find some answers to these questions. This class will have a special emphasis on Free Verse and the particular challenges and joys of such a poem. This workshop aims to generate new work and to cultivate skills necessary for a writer. Permission Required.
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.400. Advanced Poetry Workshop. 3 Credits.

The capstone course in poetry writing. Consideration of various poetic models in discussion, some assigned writing, primarily workshop of student poems. Students will usually complete a “collection” of up to 15 poems. Permission Required. (Formerly AS.220.396.)
Prerequisites: AS.220.201
Instructor(s): D. Yezzi
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.401. Advanced Fiction Workshop. 3 Credits.

The capstone course in writing fiction, primarily devoted to workshop of student stories. Some assignments, some discussion of literary models, two or three completed student stories with revisions. Completion of Intermediate Fiction is required for admission. Permission Required. (Formerly AS.220.355)
Instructor(s): A. McDermott; B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.403. Readings in Poetry: The Branch Will Not Break. 3 Credits.

Readings in Contemporary Poetry. Confession, place, myth and image are the four compass points of American poetry best embodied in the work of James Wright. With the work of Wright at the center of the compass, we will read the Selected Poems of four major living poets and discover how these directions and forces play out over the course of a career. Permission required.
Instructor(s): S. Scafidi
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.404. Readings in Fiction: Narrative Design. 3 Credits.

A readings course in the novel studying works by Jane Austen, Honore de Balzac, Ivan Turgenev, Henry James, Thomas Mann, Joseph Conrad and Elsa Morante. Students keep a notebook of critical responses to the novels and write a final paper.
Instructor(s): J. McGarry
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.406. Readings in Fiction: Hard-Boiled Fiction and Film Noir. 3 Credits.

Students read six novels by Hammett, Chandler, Cain, Burnett, and Woolrich and view seven films made from these novels by Huston, Hawks, Wilder, Dmytryk, Richards, Walsh, and Farrow. Cross-listed with Film and Media Studies.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.409. Readings in Fiction: Faulkner, Fitzgerald, & Hemingway. 3 Credits.

An examination of the fiction of three American modernist masters in the context of the early 20th century movement in the verbal and visual arts. Not a workshop course.
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.410. Readings in Poetry: Four Women Poets. 3 Credits.

A study of technique and strategy in the poetry of Emily Dickinson, Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, and Amy Clampitt. Not a workshop course.
Instructor(s): M. Salter
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.411. Readings in Poetry: Sex & Death in Contemporary American Poetry. 3 Credits.

Between sex and death the body has a varied wild life in American poetry. In a survey of contemporary work this seminar will consider the life of the body, its relationship to the imagination and the kaleidoscopic world of the senses. Reading erotic poems, elegies, poems of sickness and health, and of age and youth, we will find an intimate politics of the body. Students will read and respond critically to American poems written over the last fourty years.
Instructor(s): S. Scafidi
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.412. Readings in Poetry: Eliot,Crane & Stevens. 3 Credits.

An examination of the poetry of Eliot, Crane and Stevens in the context of the modernist movement in the verbal and visual arts. Not a workshop course. Juniors and seniors majors are given preference.
Instructor(s): J. Irwin
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.416. Readings in Fiction: Five from the Fifties. 3 Credits.

We will examine five American writers who were emerging or thriving in the middle of the 20th century: John Cheever, Flannery O'Connor, Peter Taylor, John Updike, and Vladimir Nabokov. We will read short stories by all five, as well as the following novels: O'Connor's Wise Blood, Updike's Of the Farm, Nabokov's Lolita and Pale Fire.
Instructor(s): B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.417. Advanced Nonfiction Workshop. 3 Credits.

Classes will be devoted to writing and collective editing of factual work of significant length and ambition, including essays, journalistic reports, histories, and biographies. Instructor permission required.
Instructor(s): W. Biddle
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.418. Readings in Fiction: The Novella. 3 Credits.

Registration Restrictions: Permission required. Twentieth-century novellas, with a new author and book each week. The course asks: What can and has been accomplished by American fiction writers in fewer than 150 pages?
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.419. Readings in Poetry: Auden & His Circle. 3 Credits.

Permission Required
Instructor(s): M. Salter
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.420. Readings in Contemporary Fiction: Coetzee, Delillo, Freudenberger, Johnson. 3 Credits.

The central concern of this course is to read, study, think about, and discuss several novels and short story collections, paying special attention to the voice and structural techniques these authors have invented to create compelling works.
Instructor(s): M. Klam
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.421. Readings in Poetry: Poetry of War. 3 Credits.

A study of modern war poetry, especially of the two World Wars, including work by W.B. Yeats, Rupert Brooke, Wilfred Owen, W.H. Auden, Louis MacNeice, Randall Jarrell, Henry Reed, Richard Wilbur, Anthony Hecht. Some poetry concerning other conflicts, from the Trojan War to the war in Iraq, will also be addressed. What is the role of poetry in responding to political events? Students will write critical papers as well as poems.
Instructor(s): M. Salter
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.422. Readings in Fiction: Women Behaving Badly!. 3 Credits.

This course will focus on fiction that centers around a profoundly flawed female protagonist, an antiheroine. Why is it that we love some of these women in spite of their wrongdoings? How do we connect to a character who is acting in ways that we would never hope to act? And how is it that bad behavior is often perceived as sexy? Are evil women any less or more evil than their male counterparts? Students will read 8 books with villainesses whose crimes range from poor parenting to serial killing. One final paper (10-20 pages) will be due at the end of the semester on a topic of the student’s choosing, relating to one or more of the protagonists from the reading list.
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.423. Readings in Fiction: Castaways in Literature. 3 Credits.

Our primary text will be Defoe's Robinson Crusoe. We will read spin-offs of Robinson Crusoe (Muriel Spark's Robinson, J. M. Coetzee's Foe, Elizabeth Bishop's "Crusoe in England") as well as Golding's Lord of the Flies and Sylvia Townsend Warner's Mr. Fortune's Maggot. Selections from Homer, Swift, and Byron. We will conclude with Shakespeare's The Tempest. (Leithauser)
Instructor(s): B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.424. Science as Narrative. 3 Credits.

Class reads the writings of scientists to explore what their words would have meant to them and their readers. Discussion will focus on the shifting scientific/cultural context throughout history. Authors include Aristotle, Copernicus, Galileo, Descartes, Newton, Darwin, Freud, Einstein, Heisenberg, Bohr, Crick and Watson.
Instructor(s): R. Panek
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.425. Readings in Fiction: The Story Cycle. 3 Credits.

A study of the short story cycle as a literary form. Authors may include Joyce, Schulz, Anderson, Welty, Calvino, Munro, Erdrich, Diaz and others.
Instructor(s): R. Puchner
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.426. Readings in Poetry: Early Auden and his Contemporaries. 3 Credits.

A close study of the writing that Auden, Isherwood, Spender, and MacNeice produced during the 1930s against the backdrop of the Great Depression, the Spanish Civil War, and the rise of Nazism. This is not a workshop course, but students will have the opportunity to respond artistically as well as analytically to the course readings.
Instructor(s): J. Arthur.

AS.220.427. Readings in Fiction: The Novella. 3 Credits.

A study of the novella as a literary form. Authors may include Melville, Turgenev, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Kafka, James, Wharton, Baldwin, Porter, Rulfo, Smiley, and others.
Instructor(s): R. Puchner
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.428. Readings in Fiction: The Stories and Letters of Anton Chekhov. 3 Credits.

We will read the major long and short stories of Chekhov, along with selected letters written in the full course of his lifetime. Juniors and Seniors only.
Prerequisites: AS.220.105 AND AS.220.106 AND AS.220.200 AND 300 level Intermediate Fiction
Instructor(s): J. McGarry
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.501. Independent Study. 3 Credits.

Ordinarily no more than one independent study course may be counted among the eight Writing Seminars courses presented for graduation.

AS.220.502. Independent Study. NULL Credits.

Instructor(s): Staff.

AS.220.505. Writing Seminars Internship. 1 Credit.

Instructor(s): Staff.

AS.220.506. Writing Seminars Internship. 1 Credit.

Instructor(s): G. Williamson; T. Davies.

AS.220.507. Honors Thesis. 3 Credits.

Permission Required.
Instructor(s): Staff.

AS.220.508. Honors Thesis. 0 - 2 Credit.

Department Permission Required.
Instructor(s): J. McGarry.

AS.220.509. Practicing Journalism Internship. 1 Credit.

This internship is given in conjunction with local media and must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. It covers many aspects of the operation of a metropolitan newspaper or magazine or TV station. Permission Required. Satisfactory/ Unsatisfactory only.
Instructor(s): Staff; T. Davies.

AS.220.510. Practicing Journalism. 1 Credit.

Permission Required.
Instructor(s): T. Davies
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.513. Teaching Writing. 3 Credits.

Permission Required.
Instructor(s): Staff
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.592. Internship-Summer. 1 Credit.

Instructor(s): Staff.

AS.220.594. Practicing Journalism Internship. 1 Credit.

Instructor(s): D. Basford; J. Arthur; J. McGarry; T. Davies; W. Biddle.

AS.220.596. Teach Writing-Internship. 1 Credit.

Instructor(s): S. Dixon.

AS.220.598. Independent Study. 3 Credits.

Instructor(s): G. Blake; G. Williamson; J. McGarry; Staff; T. Davies.

AS.220.604. Readings in Contemporary Fiction: Coetzee, Delillo, Freudenberger, Johnson.

The central concern of this course is to read, study, think about, and discuss several novels and short story collections, paying special attention to the voice and structural techniques these authors have invented to create compelling works. Restricted to Graduate Students.
Instructor(s): M. Klam
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.610. Readings in Fiction: Alternatives to Realism.

Instructor(s): A. McDermott.

AS.220.612. Readings in Fiction: Poe, Borges.

Area: Humanities.

AS.220.613. Writing about Science.

A seminar in the writing of factual prose about scientific matters, whether for the general reader or for professional scientists as audience. Weekly writing, editing, and reading assignments. Permission required.
Instructor(s): A. Finkbeiner.

AS.220.614. Graduate - Science Workshop.

Intensive seminar, at a professional level, in writing factual prose about science for the general reader. Students find, research, and structure their own stories. Weekly writing, editing. Permission required.

AS.220.619. Graduate Poetic Forms I.

AS.220.623. Fiction Workshop.

Discussion and critique of fiction manuscripts by students enrolled in the M.F.A. program. Some assignments possible.
Instructor(s): B. Leithauser.

AS.220.624. Graduate Fiction Workshop.

Discussion and critique of fiction manuscripts by students enrolled in the MFA program. Some assignments possible.
Instructor(s): R. Puchner.

AS.220.625. Poetry Workshop.

Discussion and critique of poetry manuscripts by students enrolled in the M.F.A. program. Some assignments possible.
Instructor(s): J. Arthur.

AS.220.626. Graduate Poetry Workshop.

Discussion and critique of poetry manuscripts by students enrolled in the MFA program. Some assignments possible.
Instructor(s): M. Salter.

AS.220.628. Graduate Seminar: Landscape & Setting.

Instructor(s): M. Klam.

AS.220.629. Readings in Poetry: Contemporary American Poetry.

A study of American poetry written after 1945 with discussion of aesthetic movements, events, historical and contextual, and the character of evolution and practices in poetic structures. Readings vary.
Instructor(s): D. Smith
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.630. Readings in Poetry: Eliot, Crane, and Stevens.

Instructor(s): J. Irwin
Writing Intensive.

AS.220.634. Forms of Poetry: Syllable and Stress.

Area: Humanities.

AS.220.638. Readings in Fiction: Chekhov: Stories and Letters.

We will read all--or most--of Chekhov's short stories, his "notebook," as well as the letters that have been translated into English.

AS.220.643. Readings in Poetry: Hardy, Yeats, Frost.

A study of three major poets (English, Irish, American) who each introduced signature tones, techniques, and themes in modern poetry. Some other figures, such as Louise Bogan and the World War I poets, may be discussed.
Instructor(s): M. Salter.

AS.220.644. Graduate Readings in Poetry: 14th Century Alliterative Poetry.

A course in the poetry of the 14th-century alliterative revival in which students will read and study Middle English works such as Patience, Cleanness, Pearl, Gawain and the Green Knight, and Piers Plowman. Graduate students only.
Instructor(s): J. Irwin
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.645. Graduate Readings in Fiction: Castaways in Literature.

Our primary text will be Defoe's Robinson Crusoe. We will read spin-offs of Robinson Crusoe (Muriel Spark's Robinson, J. M. Coetzee's Foe, Elizabeth Bishop's "Crusoe in England") as well as Golding's Lord of the Flies and Sylvia Townsend Warner's Mr. Fortune's Maggot. Selections from Homer, Swift, and Byron. We will conclude with Shakespeare's The Tempest. Graduate students only.
Instructor(s): B. Leithauser
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.646. Graduate Readings in Fiction and Poetry.

A graduate course designed to develop both close reading and genre study, and to support the teaching of Introduction to Fiction and Poetry (IFP) I and II. Readings in selected works of American, English, and European poetry and short fiction. Course required by all graduate students in fiction and poetry.
Instructor(s): D. Yezzi; R. Puchner
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.647. Readings in Poetry: Form and Free Verse.

A practical study of prosody rooted in the formalist tradition and continuing into theories of free verse. Readings include essays by Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams, T.S. Eliot, Charles Olson, and Denise Levertov. This is not a workshop course, but students will have the opportunity to respond artistically as well as analytically to the course readings. Graduate students only.
Instructor(s): J. Arthur
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.648. Forms: The Longer Poem as Anthology.

A study of form through three poets especially concerned with formal variety as a complement to, and manifestation of, theme and voice. Readings will include book-length works by George Herbert (The Temple); Auden (The Sea and the Mirror); Schnackenberg (The Throne of Labdacus).
Instructor(s): M. Salter
Area: Humanities.

AS.220.800. Independent Study.

Instructor(s): Staff.

AS.220.802. Thesis.

Instructor(s): Staff.

Cross Listed Courses

Film and Media Studies

AS.061.205. Introduction to Dramatic Writing: Film. 3 Credits.

We will explore the basic principles of visual storytelling in narrative film as they apply to the design and execution of a screenplay. During the course of the semester, each student will work on different writing exercises as they search for their specific story and the best way to approach it and execute it. We will study different narrative tools and methods of screenwriting by analyzing specific films to ascertain how they work or fail to do so at script level. Through in-class critiques, group discussions and one-on-one sessions, students will apply these techniques to their own work as they undergo the process of designing, breaking down, outlining and writing a screenplay for a short film. In-class analysis and debate on the strengths and challenges posed by the students' work will help shape the thematic emphasis of the second half of the course.
Instructor(s): R. Buso-garcia
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.061.315. Screenwriting By Genre. 3 Credits.

Story design for the screenplay with special attention to the genres of comedy, horror, melodrama, and adventure. Regular workshops, short written exercises, and a longer final project.
Prerequisites: AS.061.313 or AS.220.342 or instructor's permission
Instructor(s): L. Bucknell
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.061.371. Unrealities: The Fantastic in Film & Fiction. 3 Credits.

The fantastic, the absurd, the blackly comic in films by Cocteau, Hitchcock, and others; and in the short fiction of Barthelme, Cortázar, Hrablal, and others. Several short creative exercises and a longer final project.
Instructor(s): L. Bucknell
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.061.373. Intermediate Dramatic Writing: Film. 3 Credits.

We will explore different approaches towards understanding the fabric of story as it pertains to film. Students will be exposed to key challenges in conceiving, designing, structuring and executing a compelling, original, memorable and vibrant feature-length screenplay. By studying key examples we will discuss possible solutions to these issues. In every class, students will share their work in progress and will help each other find approaches or solutions to their specific challenges and issues. We will analyze films with screenplays that effectively play with the form to create lasting, thought-provoking and affecting stories. Through in-class critiques, group discussions and one-on- one sessions, students will apply new tools and approaches to their own work as they undergo the process of designing, breaking down, outlining and writing a full step outline, a beat sheet and the first ten pages of a feature length screenplay. As the semester progresses, in-class analysis and debate on the strengths and challenges posed by the students' work will shape the thematic emphasis of each class.
Prerequisites: AS.220.204 OR AS.061.205
Instructor(s): R. Buso-garcia
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

Anthropology

AS.070.203. Healing: Politics and Poetics. 3 Credits.

Metaphors of health and illness; individual and social. The body in pain and the body politic. Ethnographies of historical memory vis-à-vis medicine, epidemics, sacredness, shamanism, terror, humanitarianism, truth and reconciliation.
Instructor(s): J. Obarrio
Area: Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences.

AS.070.306. Healing: Politics and Poetics. 3 Credits.

Metaphors of health and illness. Individual and social healing. The body in pain and the body politic. History of immunity (biological, legal). Ethnographies of collective memory vis-à-vis medicine, epidemics, sacredness, shamanism, terror, truth and reconciliation.
Area: Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Writing Intensive.

AS.070.322. Anthropology and Fiction. 3 Credits.

Looking at fiction, poetry, visual montage, and other forms of experimental writing in contemporary anthropology, we will explore ethnography as a creative practice of provoking altered states such as compassion, dream, wonder, and shame.
Instructor(s): A. Pandian
Area: Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Writing Intensive.

AS.070.337. Digital Media, Democracy, and Control. 3 Credits.

This course examines how digital technologies enable new publics that circumvent state and social controls as well as how they are mobilized to confirm existing racial, gendered, and political hierarchies.
Area: Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Writing Intensive.

German & Romance Languages & Literatures

AS.213.309. Walter Benjamin and His World. 3 Credits.

All readings and class discussions in English. This course will provide an introduction to the thought, writing, and world of Walter Benjamin—one of the most interesting and influential German writers of the early 20th century. Although he died in exile having published only a single book in his lifetime, in the past three decades his ideas and preoccupations have changed the way we think about Cultural Studies, Media Studies, Literary Studies, German thought, Jewish mysticism, and the philosophy of history. We will be examining some of his major writings in tandem with precursors such as Charles Baudelaire and Louis Aragon; contemporaries such as Theodor Adorno and Gershom Scholem; and the legacy of his work among contemporary theorists, critics, and artists.
Instructor(s): M. Caplan
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.213.336. Dancing About Architecture: Jewish Humor and the Construction of Cultural Discourse. 3 Credits.

Are all Jews funny, or only the ones from New York? This course will be an advanced-undergraduate examination of literary, theatrical, cinematic, and televised representations of Jewish culture focusing on the construction of cultural discourse through comedy. Taking as a point of departure Sigmund Freud’s Jokes and Their Relation to the Unconscious, we will consider the joke as a mode of narration and cultural coding with specific resonances for the Jewish encounter with modernity. Among the topics to be addressed in this course will be the origins of modern Jewish humor in traditional modes of storytelling and study; the problems of anxiety and otherness articulated and neutralized through humor; the significance of Jews in creating popular culture through the mass media (particularly though not exclusively in the United States) as well as the role of these mediums in transmitting and translating Jewish references to the general culture; the status of the Yiddish language as a vehicle for satire and a vehicle of resistance between tradition and modernity; the uses and abuses of Jewish stereotypes and the relationship of Jewish humor to anti-Semitism; the connections between Jewish humor and other modes of minority discourse; and the question of translation of Jewish humor both from Yiddish into other languages and from the Jewish “in-group” to a “post-ethnic” audience. Authors and performers to be examined will include Avrom Goldfaden, Sholem Aleichem, Franz Kafka, Dzigan and Szumacher, Lenny Bruce, the Marx Brothers, Mel Brooks, Phillip Roth, Woody Allen, Larry David, Sarah Silverman, and the Coen Brothers. All readings and discussions conducted in English.
Instructor(s): M. Caplan
Area: Humanities.

AS.214.612. The dichotomy 'prodesse'-'delectare' from Horace to the Twentieth-Century.

Rooted in in antiquity, a crucial notion in theory of literature is that a literary work must provide both entertainment and instruction to its readers. In the history of human reflection on artistic production this notion’s importance can be compared to that of imitation. This course will examine instances of this notion’s appearance across the centuries, from Horace to Boccaccio, and all the way to our times. Special attention will be given to the connection between aesthetics and ethics and to the pleasure of reading.
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.216.300. Contemporary Israeli Poetry. 3 Credits.

This course examines the works of major Israeli poets such as Yehuda Amichai, Nathan Zach, David Avidan, Dan Pagis, Dalia Rabikovitch,Yona Wollach, Yair Horwitz, Maya Bejerano, and Yitzhak Laor. Through close reading of the poems, the course traces the unique style and aesthetic of each poet, and aims at presenting a wide picture of contemporary Hebrew poetry. Students may receive credit for AS.216.300 or AS.300.413, but not both.
Prerequisites: Students may receive credit for AS.216.300 or AS.300.413, but not both.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl; Z. Cohen
Area: Humanities.

AS.216.342. The Holocaust in Israeli Society and Culture. 3 Credits.

This course examines the role of the Holocaust in Israeli society and culture. We will study the emergence of the discourse of the Holocaust in Israel and its development throughout the years. Through focusing on literary, artistic and cinematic responses to the Holocaust, we will analyze the impact of its memory on the nation, its politics and its self-perception.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.216.398. Zionism, Post-Zionism and Modern Hebrew Literature. 3 Credits.

This course studies the development of modern Hebrew literature through its relation to Zionism and Post-Zionism. Based on a close reading of both literary and non-literary Zionist and Post-Zionist texts, we will explore the thematic, social, political, aesthetic and stylistic influences that these two movements have had on modern Hebrew literature. Writers to be discussed include: Hertzel, Nordau, Achad ha-am, Jabotinsky, Kluasner, Brenner, Berdyczewski, Agnon, Greenberg, Kahana-Carmon, Oz, Yehoshua, Grossman, Castel-Bloom, and Laor. Students may receive credit for AS.216.398 or AS.300.398, but not both.
Prerequisites: Students may receive credit for AS.216.398 or AS.300.398, but not both.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl
Area: Humanities.

AS.216.412. The Divine in Literature and Cinema. 3 Credits.

This course studies various issues concerning literary and cinematic representations of the divine. We will investigate theoretical, theological, generic and aesthetic aspects of the topic and will familiarize ourselves with the general problem of the relation between religion, literature and cinema. Among the topics to be discussed are, negative theology in literature and film, theodicy and anti-theodicy, the question of religion and literary modernism, providence and narratology in the modern novel and in contemporary cinema.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl.

AS.216.612. The Divine in Literature and Cinema.

This course studies various issues concerning literary and cinematic representations of the divine. We will investigate theoretical, theological, generic and aesthetic aspects of the topic and will familiarize ourselves with the general problem of the relation between religion, literature and cinema. Among the topics to be discussed are, negative theology in literature and film, theodicy and anti-theodicy, the question of religion and literary modernism, providence and narratology in the modern novel and in contemporary cinema.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl.

Theatre Arts & Studies

AS.225.324. Adaptation for the Stage. 3 Credits.

For aspiring playwrights, dramaturgs, and literary translators, this course is a workshop opportunity in learning to adapt both dramatic and non-dramatic works into fresh versions for the stage. Students with ability in foreign languages and literatures are encouraged to explore translation of drama as well as adaptation of foreign language fiction in English. Fiction, classical dramas, folk and fairy tales, independent interviews, or versions of plays from foreign languages are covered.
Instructor(s): J. Martin
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

Humanities Center

AS.300.308. The Israeli Novel. 3 Credits.

This course studies the Israeli novel through close reading of the works of major Israeli writers such as, Ya’akov Shabtai, Amos Oz, A.B Yeshoshua, Amalia Kahana-Carmon, Yehoshua Knaz, David Grossman, Orly Castel-Bloom, Yoel Hoffmann and Etgar Keret. We will focus on questions of style, genres and thematic choices. Among the topics to be discussed are Jewish history and tradition, social and political critiques and minority representations. Classes conducted in English, but students with knowledge of Hebrew are encouraged to read texts in the original.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl
Area: Humanities.

AS.300.356. From Literature to Film - the case of Israeli Cinema. 3 Credits.

This course explores the differences and similarities between two artistic mediums: literature and cinema. Our case study will be the interesting transformation of Hebrew fiction into Israeli films-- a dominant phenomenon in Israeli cinema since its very beginning. Our main framework will be narrative theories, but we will also consider the specific historical, ideological and geo-political aspects involved in this transformation. By comparing the two artistic modes and studying the transformation of 5 literary works into films, students will become familiar with the history of modern Hebrew literature, contemporary Israeli cinema, and the relationship between these two artistic mediums. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies, Film and Media Studies, and Writing Seminars
Instructor(s): N. Stahl
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

AS.300.375. The God of the Hebrew Writer. 3 Credits.

Who is the God of the Hebrew poet and what kind of being is he? This course will examine the ways in which Hebrew writers conceived God. Against the background of Medieval Hebrew poetry we will read modern Hebrew poetry, prose and drama and analyze the changes in the notion of God and its depictions from the Middle Ages through Jewish Enlightenment to modernity. We will study the role of the poet as a mediator between God and his people and his or her understanding of God in the aftermath of World War I and the Holocaust.
Area: Humanities.

AS.300.404. The Israeli Novel. 3 Credits.

This course studies the Israeli novel through close reading of the works of major Israeli writers such as, Ya’akov Shabtai, Amos Oz, A.B Yeshoshua, Amalia Kahana-Carmon, Yehoshua Knaz, David Grossman, Orly Castel-Bloom, Yoel Hoffmann and Etgar Keret. We will focus on questions of style, genres and thematic choices. Among the topics to be discussed are Jewish history and tradition, social and political critiques and minority representations. Classes conducted in English, but students with knowledge of Hebrew are encouraged to read texts in the original. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies and Writing Seminars.
Area: Humanities.

AS.300.413. Israeli poetry. 3 Credits.

This course examines the works of major Israeli poets such as Yehuda Amichai, Nathan Zach, David Avidan, Dalia Rabikovitch, Yona Wollach, Maya Bejerano, and Yitzhak Laor. These works will be read against the background of the poetry of previous literary generations of writers such as H.N Bialik, Avraham Shlonsky, Natan Alterman and Lea Goldberg in an attempt to uncover changes in style, themes and aesthetic. Through close reading of the poems, the course traces the unique style and aesthetic of each poet, and aims at presenting a wide picture of contemporary Hebrew poetry. Class will be conducted in English and texts will be read in both English translation and the Hebrew original. Open for both Hebrew and non-Hebrew speakers. Students may receive credit for AS.216.300 or AS.300.413, but not both.
Prerequisites: Students may receive credit for AS.216.300 or AS.300.413, but not both.
Instructor(s): N. Stahl.

East Asian Studies

AS.310.116. Romantic Love in Chinese Literature. 3 Credits.

This course aims to introduce students to a variety of literary texts featuring romantic love from the 9th to the mid-20th centuries in China. The target materials cover a wide range of literary products from Bo Juyi’s court poem to the modern Shanghai novella by the woman writer Zhang Ailing (Eileen Chang). As we read romance in a variety of narrative forms such as fiction, drama, and poetry, we will examine changing ideas about marriage, love, sexuality, family, emotion, and morality within the literary discourse as well as in society. Thus, students are expected to connect various literary texts about romance to their socio-historical, literary, and political surroundings. At the same time, we will discuss the shifting significance of romance for writers and reading public and consider how literary texts formed ideas about romance in society. The course is organized chronologically and thematically. Reading assignments are all in English.
Instructor(s): F. Joo
Area: Humanities.

Interdepartmental

AS.360.133. Great Books at Hopkins. 3 Credits.

Students attend lectures by an interdepartmental group of Hopkins faculty and meet for discussion in smaller seminar groups; each of these seminars is led by one of the course faculty. In lectures, panels, multimedia presentations, and curatorial sessions among the University's rare book holdings, we will explore some of the greatest works of the literary and philosophical traditions in Europe and the Americas. Close reading and intensive writing instruction are hallmarks of this course; authors for Fall 2014 include Homer, Plato, Boccaccio, Shakespeare, Madame de Lafayette, Flaubert, Dostoevsky, Chekhov, and Joyce.
Instructor(s): A. Eakin Moss; E. Patton; J. McGarry; J. Neefs; W. Stephens
Area: Humanities
Writing Intensive.

Program in Latin American Studies

AS.361.316. Caribbean Writing in Shakespeare, V. S. Naipaul, and Alejo Carpentier. 3 Credits.

Readings and polemics concerned with Shakespeare´s play The Tempest (1610-1611) and its postcolonial afterlives; V. S. Naipaul´s novel A House for Mr. Biswas (1961); and Alejo Carpentier´s El siglo de las luces (1962). The socio historical and political contexts of each work and authorship will be considered in depth in terms of dominant notions of writing in current critical theory. Cross-listed with GRLL, English, and Writing Seminars.
Instructor(s): E. Gonzalez
Area: Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences.

For current faculty and contact information go to http://writingseminars.jhu.edu/faculty_directory/index.html

Faculty

Co-Chairs

Jean McGarry
Professor, fiction

Mary Jo Salter
Professor, poetry

Professor

Brad Leithauser
Fiction

Visiting Associate Professors

Wayne Biddle
Nonfiction

Senior Lecturers

Glenn Blake
Fiction

Tristan Davies
Fiction

Greg Williamson
Poetry

Associate Professor

David Yezzi
Poetry

Decker Professor in the Humanities

John T. Irwin
Criticism and poetry

Assistant Professors

James Arthur
Poetry

Matthew Klam
Fiction

Dora Malech
Poetry

Eric Puchner
Fiction

Richard A. Macksey Professor for Distinguished Teaching in the Humanities

Alice McDermott
Fiction

Professor Emeritus

John Barth
Fiction