Dreaming and Writing
Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies
Undergraduate: Level 6
Thursday 03 October 2019
Saturday 14 December 2019
09 May 2019
Requisites for this module
This workshop-based module will focus on the relationship between creative writing and dreams. The main focus will be to practically explore new forms and ideas for writing through engagement with a range of experimental film and art, as well as examples of literatures that explore dream forms, and/or use dream material for experimental narratives and poetry.
The group will be encouraged to write continually throughout the module using their own dreams, dream theory and other literary dream works as research for their work. The students will be encouraged to keep a dream journal as a necessary aspect of the course. The group will be introduced to some 20thCentury, classical and contemporary dream theories as well as key psychoanalytic literature on dream interpretation to be engaged with through essential weekly independent reading.
* Explore experimental forms and ideas through the medium of dreams
* Employ innovative approaches to researching, composing and sharing creative writing
* Apply critical theory to various forms of surreal, innovative, transgressive and philosophically charged material.
* Build an identity as a writer, taking creative writing practice outside the classroom
* Experiment with form and ideas in poetry and prose
* Explore voice and character
* Consider the act of writing in conjunction with our experience of the world and our self-knowledge
1. A rich portfolio of imaginative, cross-genre writing.
2. A grounded understanding of key theories and concepts relating to dream philosophies and literature.
3. A developed sense of creative writing practices.
4. Heightened confidence in working collaboratively and contribute to a assured and supportive writing environment
The independent creative writing project can be; poetry, fiction, film script, performance score, or somewhere in between some or all of these. This creative piece will be accompanied by a critical commentary that situates the work in terms of relevant theory and other creative works. In addition to the writing project, students will be asked to produce a small collaborative work (working in pairs, or possibly threes) to present to the class on a designated day. This presentation will be assessed.
Example of General Reading:
Blanchot, Maurice, 'Dreaming, Writing' in Friendship, (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1971)
Cixous, Hélène, Dream I Tell You, trans. by Beverley Bie Brahic (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2006)
Farbman, Herschel, The Other Night: Dreaming, Writing, and Restlessness in Twentieth-Century Literature (New York: Fordham Press, 2008)
Freud, S., The interpretation of dreams; trans by Joyce Crick, (Oxford: Oxford World Classics, 1999)
The module will have an emphasis on practical explorations of the themes – through writing exercises, workshops and collaborating. As well as weekly independent readings of key texts, students will be required to undergo independent writing throughout the module in the form of a dream diary.
- Blanchot, Maurice. (1997) 'Dreaming and Writing', in Friendship, Palo Alto: Stanford University Press., pp.140-148
- Cortázar, Julio. (1985) Blow-up, and other stories, New York: Pantheon Books.
- Julio Cortazar. (1985) 'The Night Face Up', in Blow-up, and other stories, New York: Pantheon Books.
- Aberth, Susan L. (2010) Leonora Carrington: surrealism, alchemy and art, Burlington, VT: Ashgate/Lund Humphries.
- Nabokov, Vladimir; Barabtarlo, Gennady. (2018) Insomniac Dreams, Princeton: Princeton University Press.
- (2004) Dreams and history: the interpretation of dreams from ancient Greece to modern psychoanalysis, Hove: Routledge.
- Plath, Sylvia. (1998) 'Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams: And Other Prose Writings', in Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams: And Other Prose Writings, London: Faber and Faber.
- Bechdel, Alison. (2013) Are You My Mother?: A Comic Drama: Mariner Books.
- Breton, André; Seaver, Richard; Lane, Helen R. (©1969) Manifestoes of surrealism, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
- Cixous, Hélène. (2006) Dream I tell you, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. vol. Frontiers of theory
- Walter Benjamin. (2008) 'Dream Kitsch', in The work of art in the age of its technological reproducibility, and other writings on media, Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press., pp.236-239
The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.
Assessment items, weightings and deadlines
|Coursework / exam
||Collaborative work presentation
||Creative Writing Project and Critical Commentary
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Holly Pester
LiFTS General Office - email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Telephone 01206 872626
Dr James Michael Miller
Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Creative Writing
Available via Moodle
Of 40 hours, 36 (90%) hours available to students:
4 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).
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