English 143N

Prose Nonfiction: Creative Nonfiction: Our Culture, Our Lives

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Fall 2019 Saul, Scott
TTh 11-12:30 107 Mulford


This course is a creative nonfiction workshop in which you'll learn to write about many different types of art and culture, from TV and film to music and the built environment, while developing your own voice as a writer and reflecting on what has shaped your own sensibility. For examples of the wide variety of student writing produced in earlier versions of the course—from memoir to cultural criticism—visit "the Annex" at www.medium.com/the-annex.

Our semester will be guided by a few basic questions: What can we demand from culture, and how are we transformed by it? What does it mean to love or hate a song, TV show, work of art, or film genre? How do our arguments about a particular piece of "culture" connect to broader dreams about politics, freedom, community, and our sense of the possible? How are we shaped by our encounters with specific works of art? And more generally, how do we understand how we've become who we've become?

On several occasions, we will be honored to host a vist with an esteemed writer, whose work will be featured in the class. Previous visitors have included the New Yorker's Hua Hsu, Slate's Lili Loofbourow, journalist Rachel Syme, novelist Amitava Kumar, and Macarthur 'genius grant' winner Josh Kun.

To read about when and where the results of the applications will be posted, click here.

Only continuing UC Berkeley students are eligible to apply for this course. To be considered for admission, please electronically submit 5-10 double-spaced pages of your creative nonfiction (no poetry or academic writing), by clicking on the link below; fill out the application you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is 11 PM, THURSDAY, APRIL 25.

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