Jun 23, 2024  
College Catalog 2013-2014 
    
College Catalog 2013-2014 ARCHIVED CATALOG

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ENGL 306 - Creative Nonfiction


Some of America’s most storied writers work in a genre called, somewhat paradoxically, creative nonfiction. Ever since Truman Capote published the first ‘nonfiction novel’ about the murders of the Clutter family in 1965, the art of presenting facts has cut a major swath across American letters. After Capote and Normal Mailer, a group of writers in the ‘60s and ‘70s found that writing about America’s riotous transformations demanded something other than newspapers’ conventionally dispassionate tone. Joan Didion, Hunter S. Thompson, Gay Talese, Michael Herr and Tom Wolfe wrote about hippies, rock and roll and the Vietnam War and changed the way the culture understood journalism. A variety of contemporary writers like John McPhee, Jon Krakauer, Dave Eggers, Anne Fadiman and Katherine Boo have continued to explore the power and boundaries of nonfiction, covering everything from extremist religious cults to poverty in India to the natural history of oranges. Using the format tools of the best literary fiction - structure, point of view - literary nonfiction brings the full force and grace of the language to bear on narratives carved from observed truth. This class will cover a discussion of journalistic standards and ethics, an introduction to the practice of literary journalism and a survey of some of the important writers in the field.

Pre-req: ENGL 110 , ENGL 120 , ENGL 220 , or ENGL 221 
3 credits



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