Writing Studies Spring 2017 Course Offerings are Here!

Without further ado, here are the courses being offered in spring 2017 for the Writing Studies program.


ENG 560: Rhetoric Then & Now/CRN 10565

Dr. Grace Wetzel

 This course will consider various histories and theories of rhetoric as a means of developing our own capacities to think and write rhetorically. We’ll begin our exploration with rhetorical theories from ancient Greece and Rome (e.g. Aspasia, Plato, Aristotle, Quintilian), proceed to analyze the rhetorical practices of a range of 19th century rhetors and journalists (e.g. Sojourner Truth, Nellie Bly, Ida B. Wells), and afterwards discuss postmodern criticism and feminist rhetoric (e.g. Foucault, Baudrillard, Audre Lorde). We will conclude by considering rhetoric in relation to contemporary culture, digital media, and animality.  Ultimately, we will discover how rhetorical terms, concepts, and frames of mind can transform our writing and critical awareness about the world. (Core Course)

The following course texts are required:

Herrick, James A. The History and Theory of Rhetoric: An Introduction. Fifth Edition. Pearson, 2013.

Course Packet (available at the bookstore).


ENG 600: Poetry Today/CRN 10566

Dr. April Lindner

In this class, we will explore the liveliness and variety of American poetry right now, reading and discussing recent collections by a wide range of poets working in all sorts of poetic traditions.  You will keep a journal responding to our readings and also produce formal writings, including a book review of the poetry collection of your choice and creative imitations of the poets we read, accompanied by brief essays explaining your writerly choices.  Each of you will present your book review to the class so that we can learn from each other’s reading experience. You will workshop the poems you write for class and revise them for a final portfolio. (Area I)


ENG 635: The Writing Teacher Writing/CRN 10567

Dr. Melissa Goldthwaite

The Writing Teacher Writing is a class in which teachers, learners, and writers of all kinds seek to develop and sustain a practice of writing and a reflective writing pedagogy—one that can help students, too, see themselves as writers. We’ll consider personal writing practices, methods by which teachers conduct research in their own classrooms, and funded research on a larger scale. Students will do writing exercises, write response papers, and conduct a semester project of their choice. (Area II)


ENG 668: Creative Nonfiction Workshop/CRN 10568

Professor Eleanor Stanford

In this workshop-based course, we will read a variety of works of creative nonfiction, exploring the various forms the essay can take, as well as the sometimes fluid definition and form of the genre itself. We will consider works from across time and nationality for craft and technique. Readings may include works by Michel de Montaigne, David Foster Wallace, Leslie Jamison, Jenny Boully, and others. We will also experiment with various exercises to generate original writing in the genre. (Area III)


If you have any questions, please contact Heather A. Foster at hfoster@sju.edu, or the Director, Tenaya Darlington, at tdarling@sju.edu.

SJU Writing Studies Fall 2016 Course Offerings


Tenaya Darlington



ENG 550: Practice of Writing/CRN 40587

Professor Tenaya Darlington


This course is designed as an Introduction to the Writing Studies Program, and it allows students to explore a variety of genres while they explore career options within the writing/publishing world. Students will literally “walk in the shoes” of different writers, playing the role of columnist, reporter, editor, poet, and fiction writer. At the end of the course, students will reflect on these different roles and begin brainstorming a possible thesis project in one area. (Core Course)



ENG 673: Screen Writing/CRN 40590

Professor Tom Coyne


In this class, we will learn how to present story in a specific, challenging, and rewarding format that may be unknown to you, but the fundamentals of good screenwriting are the same as all good creative writing — detail, dialogue, character, voice, precision, and imagination. We will develop and locate our most cinema-ready narratives, and learn how to tell them via camera and microphone. We will read screenplays, write screenplays, and discuss the craft and conventions of professional screenwriting. We will study three-act structure and the fundamentals of dramatic storytelling, and we will look at a number of professional screenplays to guide our discussion of form and craft.  Each member of the workshop will develop his or her own screen project from an initial concept/pitch to a full-length, feature screenplay.  The class will also look at the business of screenwriting and discuss the overall development of screen projects. No screenwriting experience required. (Area III)



ENG 636: Writing as Empowerment/CRN 40589

Dr. Ann Green

In Writing and (as) Empowerment, we’ll explore how writing can be used as a tool, a method, and a means of empowerment. We’ll consider how the ability to tell one’s story can be empowering and what the risks of telling one’s own story are. We’ll also consider what an author might choose to leave out of her telling of a particular tale. Finally, we’ll research a story of empowerment and write our stories of empowerment. Each participant will complete two projects in different genres, including fiction, nonfiction, pedagogy, poetry, and academic prose.  Lots of writing and intensive reading.  (Area II)

 owen gilman


ENG 615: Road to Revolution in the 1960s/CRN 40588

Dr. Owen Gilman

 A study of the American cultural scene during the 1960s with particular focus on the contribution of writers as agents of change in movements to break existing stereotypes and to challenge racial discrimination, gender discrimination, sexual repression, environmental degradation, and war. Writers may include: Jack Kerouac, Harper Lee, Rachel Carson, Nikki Giovanni, Eldridge Cleaver, Norman Mailer, Kurt Vonnegut, Joseph Heller, Betty Freidan, and some Beat poets. Films were also consequential both in propelling and in reflecting revolutionary changes in American life through the 1960s. Several key films that may be considered include In the Heat of the Night, Bonnie and ClydeThe Graduate, and Easy Rider. (Area I)

SJU Writing Studies Summer 2016 Course Info

Registration for summer 2016 begins on Monday, February 22, 2016 at 7:00 am. Here are the offerings:


Eleanor Stanford

Eleanor Stanford

Summer I: May 16 – June 24, 2016

ENG 669: Poetry (Area II) – Monday/Wednesday

Instructor: Eleanor Stanford

Hours: two nights per week, 18:30-21:45

Poetry, many would agree, is language at its most intense and most alive. It asks us to push ourselves linguistically, spiritually, emotionally, with more intensity than perhaps any other genre. What better form, then, for any writer to learn from and engage with? In this course, we will read across a wide variety of styles, time periods, and cultures. We will consider what we can learn from these poems, as readers, writers and as human beings, that we can apply to other aspects of our work and our lives. We will also try our hands at writing many different kinds of poems as part of the workshop. This course fulfills Area II, Rhetoric & Composition.

Maureen Saraco

Maureen Saraco

Summer II: June 27-August 7, 2015

ENG 680: Writing the Grant Proposal (Area III) hybrid class – Mondays online/ Wednesdays in person

Instructor: Maureen Saraco

Hours: one night per week, 18:30-21:45


“Writing the Grant Proposal” is a hybrid course that will meet once a week on campus; the second weekly meeting will take place online. ENG 680 will introduce students to the fundamentals of grant writing, a critical part of working in the nonprofit sector (as well as in academia, the arts, and research). Successful nonprofit grant writers raise the money to allow an organization’s programs and specific projects to move forward, to facilitate growth and the achievement of key objectives, and, in many cases, to quite literally keep the doors open. Functioning primarily as a workshop, the course will pair each student with a local nonprofit organization, for which the student will serve as a “consultant.” By the end of the course, each student will have written a full grant proposal for his or her organization. The course will primarily emphasize developing convincing and compelling language for each piece of the grant proposal, but students can also expect to learn about a typical grant-making process and about how to conduct research to generate a strong proposal and to find appropriate funders. This course fulfills Area III, Professional Writing.

If you have any questions, contact Director Tenaya Darlington at tdarling@sju.edu or Heather Foster at hfoster@sju.edu.