The Craft of Writing – Trans Reading, Trans Writing
R1A 004 | CCN: 23755
Trans Reading, Trans Writing
Instructor: Simon(e) van Saarloos,Be Schierenberg
Location: Hearst Mining 310
Date / Time: Tu/Th 11:00am - 12:29pm
“How does one become trans? Often the answer is: by reading”
– Cameron Awkward Rich, The Terrible We. Thinking With Trans Maladjustment (2022), 127.
What can trans culture teach us about reading and writing? What can trans stories and studies teach us about certain norms and expectations we may bring to writing, such as legibility, clear cut transitions, being right and sticking to a proper style?
In this course you will get to know a range of writers, artists and theorists who engage with transness in their work. Their contributions, seminar discussions and the projects assigned in this class will introduce you to strategies of reading and the craft of writing in college. Reading for a sense of trans* in exciting works of literature, film and art, as well as affect theory, queer studies, disability studies and black studies, we will get curious about how storytelling and trans* come together — if they can even be considered separate at all. This class is interested in the ways that trans tends to be told and understood today.
This course will be divided into four sections. We suggest that legibility, transition, correction and style are key terms associated with transness. This course suggests that these four key terms can guide our introduction to the craft of writing. That is, legibility, transition, correction and style not only frame our reading but also our writing practice.
In order to successfully participate in this R&C no prior knowledge or experience with the subject is necessary. We think of trans as being in motion, never describing only one kind of experience. We will not bother to defend trans against right wing and conservative attacks and will not question whether trans people exist. Instead we’ll get interested in the ways that trans existence articulates itself in aesthetic practice and as a mode of critique.