Welcome to your course, Experiments in Text: Reclaiming Public Spaces! This should be a fun, but socially-politically and aesthetically generative (and urgent) quarter. I’m looking forward to getting started.
Class is located in Sem II C3109 – both days, Weds at 5pm and on Sat at 4pm.
There are no readings or writings due for the first week, in part due to enrollment fluctuations (we will be spending time doing in-class reading and writing, however). Rather, we’ll spend some time discussing major themes of the quarter, logistics, and writing processes day 1, spending some time responding to any questions. Day 2, Saturday, we’ll start discussing and working on how creative writing (especially poetry, multi-media, and performance/performative text arts installations) could, if arts ever can, rupture, intervene in, effect, or transform public and/or private spaces. We’ll begin by performing some experiments–to be described as we begin on Saturday.
But no readings for this week. Just in-class work. If you are still interested in taking the course, now is the time to email me and let me know (or to make sure to show up Saturday with an add/drop form). My email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For future, however, I’ll be emailing everyone links to weekly readings (or attaching pdfs when necessary), as well as putting up these readings on our course blog. The blog will also be a place for announcements and the occasional extrapolation on ideas / materials covered in class. So, please bookmark this blog address (note that the name will change to reflect this quarter’s course, but note too that you’ll have at your fingertips resources of all short courses, including those NOT part of “Experiments in Text” series, I’ve taught since 2007):
OUR BLOG: http://blogs.evergreen.edu/wolachd/
(I also have a public blog that is worth putting in your virtual back pocket, since I occasionally write on contemporary issues in poetics and politics here, thus making that blog potentially useful, though non-required, as resource: http://davidwolach.blogspot.com/ .)
The readings posted to the first link above (our official blog, this blog) will be very short and will serve to give us context and models to play with, work off, discuss. Readings will be posted every week by Monday early evening. Some will be sound files or video. They’ll range from works of poetry to multi-media artworks that utilize the written (complex enactments of language, to paraphrase poet Joan Retallack), to, again, short critical writing (for instance, we’ll read works by Guy Debord and the Situationist Internationale). I am mindful that this is a 4 credit course, so will keep workload at a level appropriate for 4 credits. It’s the quality of work we do with one another that I’m interested in, not quantity or breadth. And so with such little time to play with, primacy will be given to the work each of you do, individually and collaboratively, over assigned readings. We’ll spend a good amount of time outside the classroom this quarter. Later in the quarter we’ll work on more sustained projects, often collaboratively.
This Saturday I’d also like to begin to discuss what sort of things we’d like to see from one another, what our expectations are academically and ethically, and generally how we want to be treated. This often at Evergreen gets called a “course covenant.” That is, I’d like to see if we can together write up a document that gets at the most vital parts of our social lives as students/teachers. I’d like to see if we can make a living, breathing organism that takes care of itself and what it comes into contact with, or that is careful at very least. And if so, whether that organism might make a living document denoting such a life lived, open at any time to revision. What do you expect and/or need from your peers in class discussions and as collaborators? Let’s ask this question of one another on Saturday and again as time goes on, as we get to know one another. I’ll talk a little of what my expectations are to start us off.
Anyhow, I’m really looking forward to learning from and with you this quarter. And to getting to know those of you I have yet to meet/work with.
See you Wednesday,
Experiments in Text: Spring 2012