"Writing Machines" proposes to explore the relationship between contemporary literature and computer technologies, focusing on the ways that new technologies of writing have affected the development and dissemination of narrative. This is a hybrid literature and writing class, meaning that we'll be combining the standard seminar modes of reading and discussion with lots of hands-on production. Over the course of this semester, we will explore the ways that various scholars have theorized the relationship between the electronic and the literary. We'll complement those more theoretical readings with a careful look at a number of examples of electronic literature, from early hypertext experiments through contemporary blogs. And over the course of the semester you will do lots of electronic writing, both individually and communally.
Thanks for the suggestions you left in the comments on the post below; I think we've got enough material for a couple of weeks of interesting discussions. Why don't we start tomorrow by talking about the Kindle and other such e-book projects (I'm interested both in the projects themselves and in the critical response to them around the blogosphere), and then move on on Wednesday to consider some of the collaborative projects you've posted?
We need to decide tomorrow on what you'd like to read for the week after Thanksgiving. Use the comments on this post to make some suggestions, and we can discuss them tomorrow...
The term project assignment is now posted and linked at the appropriate points in the syllabus. Please let me know if there are questions; we can discuss them in class on Friday.
FYI -- for tomorrow's class, I'm going to want to focus on the introduction and first two chapters ("What Is New Media?" and "The Interface") of The Language of New Media. Come with specific aspects of the text in mind that you'd like to discuss. (In fact, you might begin your discussion of them here...)