Anne E Raine
Concentration on the development of prose style for experienced writers.
For SPRING 2003: Writing and Environment This advanced composition course offers experienced writers a chance to hone their skills by examining questions of audience, context, purpose, and style in the dynamic arena of public discourse about nature and the environment. Rather than focusing exclusively on the nature essay, we will consider a variety of ways in which writers use language to convey experience and influence public opinion. We will read and experiment with at least three distinct genres: the academic essay, the personal narrative, and the editorial or polemical opinion piece. Texts: Anderson, Slovic and O'Grady, eds., Literature and the Environment: A Reader on Nature and Culture; Williams, Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace; photocopied course packet.
This is a writing workshop involving a high degree of student involvement. Students should come prepared to adopt a lively curiosity about environmental questions, and to attend thoughtfully to language on the level of the word, the sentence, and the paragraph.
Class Assignments and Grading
Course work will involve some research, an outdoor field trip, a "newswatch" assignment, and a lot of writing and revision, including peer workshops and, yes, some intensive practice revising sentences for effectiveness, clarity, and grace.