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Writing 381-A

The Art of Writing About Food

The art of writing about food requires a keen interest in the topic, a desire to acquire further knowledge through research, and the ability to translate our food-related experiences into writing that incorporates concrete sensory details. We will study a variety of food writing, from restaurant reviews, magazine articles, essays and memoirs, recipe-centered pieces, food history, and scholarly research, in order to facilitate your ability to create your own writing of a food-centered personal essay (that will incorporate research and can be combined with a recipe, destination, or historical element), a review of a restaurant, book or other food-related item/place, and finally a more formal academic piece. Online classes will involve posting freewriting to generate ideas, research, workshopping for feedback from your peers, and close analysis of readings by some of the best food writers, both past and present (MFK Fisher, Michael Pollan, Julia Child, Eddie Huang, Jeffrey Steingarten, Anthony Bourdain).


Writing 381-B

Writing For Laughs

Writers in this course will read and produce humorous online list-based articles (listicles) that appeal to a wide readership. Students will read articles from successful humor writers on online repositories for comedy writing such as Cracked, College Humor, The Onion, and Medium. Based on our analysis of these articles, we will establish criteria for successful comedic writing, and apply these criteria to our work. Major assignments include a written analysis of a humorous online article of each student's choice and two original, list-based humor articles. Thoughtful prewriting activities, independent research, and extensive revision through independent review, peer critique, and extensive workshopping (modeled on Cracked Writer's Workshop) will be required.


Writing 381-C

Writing Your Way Into Grad School

A distance-learning course prepares students from all disciplines for the challenging task of preparing to apply and enter grad school. Participants will leave the course with a better understanding of the varying conventions and successful features of graduate application materials; with graduate-level disciplinary debates in their field; and with the kinds of programs that would be the best fit for their scholarly interests.


Writing 381-D

Writing About America

Writing About America In this course, students will critically explore the range of ways they identify with, relate to, and are situated within America today. Through the study of historical, fictional, civic, and political narratives, we will trace the variations in texture, sound, form, and experience that mark the similarities and differences in our individual (hi)stories, and consider how they are interwoven with the "America" (hi)story. Writers in this course will compose a series of short essays, including critical reading responses, a personal narrative, an experientially-driven civic (hi)story (a civic commentary drawn from personal experience and informed by other social and political pieces), and a longer paper that builds upon a reading from one course text to consider the personal, historical, and political forces at work in telling the story of "America."


Writing 381-H

Reading and Writing Blogs

This seminar is to familiarize students with the history, theories, and practices surrounding blogging while offering an overview of some of the tools and sites available for publishing blogs like WordPress, Atavist, Tumblr and Twitter. In this course, students will consider how blogging has evolved, discuss the presentation of self, examine how the personal is political, read and respond to blogs, and create and post their own blogs. At the end of the course, students will be able to speak about the origins and evolution of blogging, reflect on theories surrounding blog writing, speak about cyberactivism and its role in driving social change, and create and critique blogs. Students will submit a final portfolio of revised work including a 7-10 page essay reflecting on their blogging, framed by class readings and their own research, a 5-7 page review of at least three blogs they read throughout the semester, and a reflective essay that addresses their learning and the connections they have made between course material and their lives or other courses.


Writing 381-K

Writing Your Fandom

This seminar will familiarize students with the theories and practices of writing in fan communities and introduce some tools available for publishing online content. In this course, students will explore multiple online fan communities, read essays about these communities, participate in a fan community of their choice, and critically reflect on these practices. Students will discuss their experiences in their communities using our class readings as a framework. At the end of the course, students will be able to explain theories of writing in fan spaces informed by their own experiences. Students will produce a final portfolio of revised work including a 7-10 page research essay informed by research regarding their chosen fan community, a 5-7 page personal essay about their experience in the fan community, and an excerpt of writing they did in their fan community.


Writing 381 courses are offered online during summer and winter sessions. For more information on any of these classes, contact Sean Fenty, Director, Writing Initiative and First-Year Writing, or Angie Pelekidis, Assistant Director of First-Year Writing. 

Last Updated: 9/19/18