One’s got to get the technique down

14 09 2009

Creative Nonfiction

K30.1300 4 CR W 6:20-9:00 Cris Beam

Creative nonfiction marks the intersection between journalism and literature, and bears the hallmarks of both. Stories feature strong character development, well-developed, nuanced scenes, and a tangible narrative arc. But they also privilege thorough research, live reporting and a writer’s quizzical, intelligent stance. In this course, students will not only learn the components of a good story, but what makes an idea compelling to a diverse audience to begin with. Students will choose their own topics, but we’ll all write and revise one profile and one long investigative-style piece of researched and reported literary nonfiction. We will workshop these longer stories in sections, and students will learn effective editing strategies for their own writing by working closely with their peers. We’ll read masters of the genre like Joseph Mitchell, Katherine Boo, and Alex Kotlowitz as well as some newer or more experimental voices like Pumla Gobodo–Madikizela and Lauren Slater. We’ll also look at broader ethical questions like going undercover, cloaking source identities, and writing outside of one’s own experience.

gallatin NYU




4 responses

15 09 2009

You signing up for this? Or just browsing through catalogs? Does sound like a fun course.

16 09 2009

no. this was someone’s status message. hilarious when you just look at the title (having no idea what this field was all about) – I thought it was some sort of joke. you know, the next course offered would be – creative accounting or something. well…

16 09 2009

Well, now it makes sense.

And hey, don’t knock creative accounting. Lots of lives depend on it, you know.

17 09 2009

for all you know a lot of govts and presidencies depend on creative non-fiction too.

but the gallatin courses and concentrations are awesome fun. Here is one more “Gender and Drama” :D

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