Intro to Lit: Creative Writing

ENG 273: Intro to Literature: Creative Writing – Voices of Resistance

In this course we will examine how individuals and collectives voice their resistance to racial, cultural, political, religious, indigenous, gendered, and queer oppressions. We will ask: what languages do we employ when talking back to power, like bell hooks? What are the benefits and limitations of moving from the page to the stage/screen? For example, consider the emotional affect of silently reading letters of Haunani-Kay Trask and MLK compared to witnessing their powerful speeches?

As we study these dramatic voices of resistance, we will craft our own contributions through a series of creative and critical assignments.

Through critical readings of poetry, drama, life writing, and futuristic fiction, we will analyze how various forms and genres promote their messages in the context of broader movements for social change. First, we will share in our communities’ struggles through textual and spoken word poetry. Next we will script scenes of heightened dialogue to discuss formal elements of drama. Then we will create historical or fictional solo characters in the manner of Anna Deveare Smith. Finally, we will envision and give voice to alternative futures as urged by Audre Lorde and Walidah Imarisha. Weekly reading response blogs, a textual analysis essay, a social justice event analysis, as well as creative writing prompts and workshops, will build upon each other to produce a final portfolio and presentation.