University of Colorado Lecturer Kicked Off AWP Conference Committee for Racist Tweets

Los Angeles defense lawyer and conceptual poet Vanessa Place is offering a 2015 Maymester Humanities course at UC Boulder on technology and media poetics, specifically about the ways Twitter and blogging has altered art production and daily life.  Recently, Place has stirred up controversy and was removed from an Association of Writers and Writing Programs […]

Writing About Boredom, Or Writing About Writing

Boredom is not merely a symptom of existential despair, nausea, and ennui.  It’s a predicament that writing teachers negotiate with students in the classroom… But how so?  No, this is not a jaded complaint about illiteracy and students not meeting the proverbial educational mark, being underprepared for student learning outcomes and so forth.  It has more […]

Sisyphus in a Writing Class

Recently, I created a writing assignment based on Albert Camus’s absurdist philosophy and the famous essay  “The Myth of Sisyphus.”  Initially, I thought it was a brilliant assignment.  Why?  Well, aside from the obvious fact that novice writing students seemingly resemble the absurd hero pushing a rock uphill (along with the implications of the writing […]

Charles Bukowski on Writing

Writers need to be reminded of their pretensions. Charles Bukowski may not have been a great writer, or even a good one, but he was good at writing, and knew the truths of failure.  Whatever Bukowski may be to us, he was not a pretentious phony… so you want to be a writer? Charles Bukowski, […]

On Teaching Literature in a Composition Class

Recently, I came across a splendid image of a figure ensconced in the pages of a book, sleeping soundly, presumably dreaming the wonders of printed words.  Quint Buchholz’s “Nachts Mit Buch.”  It reminds me of the many times I’ve read myself to sleep with a good book.  Right now, I’m reading Herman Melville’s Typee–a sea […]

W.B. Yeats, Byron, and Idealism

Philosophical idealism has a complex history with many variations.  Most versions of idealism make univocal claims about the mind’s relationship to the world.  Specifically, idealism maintains that objects of human knowledge are mind-dependent.  Thus, reality is immaterial. The Irish poet W.B. Yeats was among others things an idealist.  Although Matthew Gibson maintains that the poet […]