Concept Development and Experimentation 11

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Course TypeCourse CodeNo. Of Credits
Foundation CoreSCC2L1034

Semester and Year Offered: Winter, 2019

Course Coordinator: Belinder Dhanoa

Email of course coordinator:

Pre-requisites: The course is open to the MA Literary Art students.

Course Objectives/Description:

In CD&E 11 students will choose and develop their craft in a major form of writing, and examine and analyse their writings within the context of critical thinking and theory.

Concept Development and Experimentation is a 12 credit course to be covered in 3 Semesters (1st, 2nd and 3rd). Students will be encouraged to explore how ideas can be developed and transformed through critical thinking and creative expression. The development of skills pertaining to conceptualization, development of plot, themes, character, and styles of writing and narrative devices are the main components of this course. This course will be conducted through writing workshops, as well as individual work with the tutor. The sessions will be conducted on a seminar/workshop model.

The course aims to develop a strong foundation in writing. It will also involve a study of historical perspectives within literary creative practice and students will work through the process of their own writing within this context. The course will also provide the foundation for critical analysis of writing, and examine the need to reflect on critical cultural issues.

Course Outcomes: On completion of the course it is expected that the student will have:

Developed critical reading skills to assess their own writing, and developed a disciplined practice in writing

Developed a practice of writing within the context of contemporary and historical perspectives within literary creative practice.

Developed an understanding of Narrative Structures, and their uses in different forms of writing.

Developed the skills of review and critique of peer writing.

Gained an understanding of developments in contemporary literary practice (including developments in writing in the digital age) and discourse.

Learned the skills to begin experimentation within forms of writing.

Engaged with questions of framing their own work within the larger contexts of literary and cultural production.

Brief description of modules/ Main modules:

This course requires a substantial amount of reading and writing. Each week we will read and respond to students' weekly writing exercises and address some specific issues about style and the mechanics of writing. The activities for each week will include three important steps:

1. Assigned Reading

2. Weekly Writing Exercise

3. Class discussion and critique of assigned reading and student writing.

In CD&E 2 students will choose and develop their craft in a major form of writing, and examine and analyse their writings within the context of critical thinking and theory. In this course we will examine how elements of writing are used in the various forms and genres of writing. The course will also contain an element of critical theory, helping students to assess their own work and that of others. This course will further develop the skills learned in Semester 1, through a combination of theoretical and practical studies.

Module 1: Writing ll

In this unit students will make individual choices of form and content, and develop a body of work through the semester. Through the process of writing the student will examine experimental possibilities in writing, the relationship between theory and practice; and also meet the challenges of structure, form etc in lengthier projects.

Module 2: Writing Contexts ll

Students will identify a range of contemporary issues through readings and will be shown the possibilities of take their bearings in their own writing from selected topics reflected in contemporary issues.

Module 3: Writing Skills

This unit will equip students with skills they will use throughout the progamme in journals and notebooks, research, and reading as a writer. It will cover topics including how a writer uses journals; how a writer uses research skills; and how to read as a writer.

Assessment details:

  • Class Participation: 30%. This is an important component of the seminar/workshop course to assess critical reading skills.
  • Weekly writing assignments: 40%. The writing assignments through the semester are related works that develop into a writing portfolio.
  • Final submission with process journal: 30%

Reading List:

The list is indicative, a point of departure rather than arrival; the student will be expected to explore it selectively, and to read above and beyond and off to the side in the ways that best feed their own work. The list is supplemented by readings directed to student proposals and individual requirements.

The overall goal is to stress the link between reading and writing, and to introduce the idea of reading like a writer, by which is meant reading with an eye toward enriching the understanding of craft and deepening individual practice.

  • Andrew Bennett and Nicholas Royle, An Introduction to Literature, Criticism and Theory, Routledge; 2016
  • Jonathan Culler, Literary Theory - a very short introduction Oxford University Press; 2011
  • Terry Eagleton, After Theory, Basic Books, 2004
  • Terry Eagleton, Literary Theory, Univ Of Minnesota Press; 2008
  • Edward Said, Orientalism, Vintage Books, 1979
  • Edward Said, The World, the Text and the Critic, Harvard University Press, 1983
  • Edward Said, Culture and Imperialism, Vintage; 1994
  • Said and Barsamian, The Pen and the Sword, Common Courage Press, 1994
  • John Berger, A letter to Rosa Luxemburg
  • Dipesh Chakrabarty: Witness to Suffering: Domestic Cruelty and the Birth of the Modern Subject in Bengal
  • Walter Benjamin, The Storyteller, NYRB Classics, 2019
  • Nietzsche, Human All too Human, Penguin Classics, 1994
  • George Orwell, A Collection of Essays, Mariner Books, 1970
  • Doris Lessing, Time Bites, Harper; 2005
  • Milan Kundera, Testaments Betrayed, An Essay in Nine Parts, Harper Perennial, 1995
  • Milan Kundera, The Curtain, An Essay in Seven Parts, Harper Perennial, 2007
  • Italo Calvino, Six Memos For the Next Millennium (Charles Eliot Norton Lectures), Mariner Books, 2016
  • Italo Calvino, A Hermit in Paris, Autobiographical Writings, Mariner Books; Translation edition, 2014
  • Vladimir Nabokov, Speak, Memory- An Autobiography Revisited, Vintage; Reissue edition, 1989
  • V. Nabokov, Pale Fire, Vintage, 2011
  • The Writers at Work Series, in The Paris Review
  • Ellen Gilchrist, Falling Through Space: The Journals of Ellen Gilchrist, Diversion Books, 2018
  • Virginia Woolf, A Writer’s Diary, Mariner Books; First edition (March 31, 2003
  • Franz Kafka, Diaries 1910-1923, Schocken, 1988
  • Denis Johnson, Jesus’ Son - subverting expectations: fragmentation, concision, radical jumps in time, intuitive narrative structure. Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 2009
  • Italo Svevo, Confessions of Zeno - text and subtext, Marciano Guerrero, 2013
  • Scholes and Kellogg, The Nature of Narrative, Oxford University Press; 2006
  • Madison Smartt Bell, Narrative Design – Working with Imagination, Craft and Form, W. W. Norton & Company, 2000
  • Wayne Booth, The Rhetoric of Fiction, University of Chicago Press; 2nd edition, 1983
  • Macauley, Robie & George Lanning, Technique in Fiction, St. Martin's Griffin, 1990
  • Strunk and White, Elements of Style, Pearson; 4th edition, 2019.
  • Italo Calvino, Italian Folktales, Mariner Books; 1992
  • Tharu and Lalita, Women Writing in India, Vols 1 & 2, The Feminist Press at CUNY, 1993
  • Toni Morrison, Beloved, Vintage; Reprint edition 2004
  • Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness, CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015
  • Gabriel Garcia-Marquez, Eva is Inside Her Cat
  • Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis, W. W. Norton & Company, 2015
  • Franz Kafka, The Trial, Schocken, 1999
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Vintage; Reprint edition, 2003
  • Flannery O'Connor, short stories Everything that Rises Must Converge, Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1965
  • Rohinton Mistry, A Fine Balance, Vintage International, 1997
  • Vladmir Nabokov, Pale Fire, Vintage; 1989
  • Truman Capote, In Cold Blood, Vintage 1994
  • Suketu Mehta, Maximum City, Vintage, 2005
  • Jerry Pinto, Bombay, Meri Jaan: Writings on Mumbai, Penguin, 2003
  • Sidhartha Mukherjee, The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, Scribner; 2011
  • Urvashi Butalia, The Other Side of Silence: Voices from the Partition of India, Duke University Press Books, 2000