Experiments in Writing

Especially useful for overcoming writer's block, this course explores the surprising potential of a playful union between fixed rules and imaginative writing. This workshop invites participants into the strange and meticulous world of constraint-based writing. We take as our entry point a group of French writers and mathematicians called the Oulipo, short for Ouvroir de Litterature Potentielle (Workshop for Potential Literature). The members of the Oulipo came together with the aim of creating new literary works through systems of formal constraints. In each class meeting we share works-in-progress, begin new exercises, and discuss the rich history of procedural writing. We also examine the far-reaching echoes of this literary tradition in painting, performance art, music, and even cuisine. Artists and writers of all levels welcome.

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Class meeting time 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Class meeting days Wednesday
Building and room MacLean 816
Course number 2418
Course instructor Laurel Forest Foglia