In this workshop, we will address the ways race, class, and gender impact our lives, our work, and our culture. As a class, we will create connection and community by practicing deep listening, daily writing, deep reading, and the sharing of ideas and observations. Together we will identify stereotypes and myths embedded in systems of power and privileges that divide us from one another. We will read laws that have validated centuries of punishment and inequality based on distortions of race, gender, and sexual orientation that continue today. We’ll read personal narratives of authors who include Harriett Jacobs, James Baldwin, Maxine Hong Kingston, Jeanette Winterson, Ruth Ozaki, Tommy Orange, and Thandeka—to learn how other writers have coped with and expressed the burning realities of their lived experience. In addition to in-class writing exercises, movement, meditations and visualizations to generate new ideas, students will be asked to a maintain a daily practice of free-writing; write personal responses to assigned books, stories, documentaries, and field trips; participate in workshop discussions and peer review; and write and revise two to three stories/essays during the semester.
Course Note: This course is not open to freshmen. May be repeated for credit with a different instructor.