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|JOUR 406 - Literary Nonfiction|
Journalism is often seen as deadline work: immediate, devoted to the emerging story, a first draft of history at best. But for many of us, long-form nonfiction writing is one of the most reliable and pleasurable ways for us to encounter the lives of others in depth; and long-form journalism is the basis for memoir, current affairs, biography, and other forms of fact-based-storytelling. In this course we’ll read two dozen outstanding works of long-form nonfiction – articles, essays, books – with attention to the ways they enable writers and readers to access the experience of others in depth. We’ll work through subject areas that demand complexity (the self; social change; strife and conflict; the earth and climate; religion and the spirit); and we’ll master strategies that allow writers to “go deep” in a relatively short span of time and space. Students will write short nonfiction pieces and then write and revise a long-form article or essay.
Paul Elie is a senior fellow in the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and a regular contributor to The New Yorker; his long-form journalism has appeared there and in The Atlantic, Vanity Fair, and The New York Times Magazine, and his two books, The Life You Save May Be Your Own (2003) and Reinventing Bach (2012), were National Book Critics Circle Award finalists.
3.000 Credit hours
3.000 Lecture hours
Levels: MN or MC Graduate, Undergraduate
Schedule Types: Seminar