Fall; Grades 11–12
Taught by: Severn School
Storytelling is as important today as it was hundreds of years ago. What has changed, in many cases, is the media through which writers tell their stories. Today’s literary artists take advantage of digital tools to spread their messages and tell their stories in new ways that combine narrative and contemporary form. Students will begin with the traditional forms of poetry, short prose, and literary non-fiction and then go beyond those forms to explore how contemporary tools can enhance expression. We will study master writers in each of the traditional forms and be inspired by their examples. Then, we will look at how communication in the twenty-first century has provided us with even more ways to share our thoughts and to be creative. Possible explorations include hyperlinked narratives, social media as inspiration and tool, animated text, audio, videos, and all manner of non-linear narrative. The class will ask an essential question: what happens when communication becomes wider and has an instant audience? The class routine, based around writing, reading, and discussion, will include weekly critiques of student work and required writing, including in some non-traditional, contemporary formats.