A study of the creative process as exemplified by AN AMERICAN TRAGEDY by Theodore Dreiser. Penn's Van Pelt Library holds the original papers, with revisions, from manuscripts, through typescripts, to author's galleys and revised page proof. The seminar will read the entire published novel and discuss it in literary, historical, and social context. Each student will independently analyze the changes in a chapter of the first complete manuscript and in as many subsequent stages as possible. The student will report to the seminar on work in progress and submit a written summary, studying the evolution of the chapter from manuscript to published version. We shall be concerned throughout with rhetorical strategies as well as theme, plot, and character. The methods of manuscript analysis will be introduced at the first class meetings, where we shall discuss revisions and multiple versions of several poems from the 19th and 20th Centuries. The student will be guided in wholly original research in a literary manuscript. Seminar limited to fifteen interested students.