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ENGS 95 OL7: Writing Arts Reviews Prof. Elaine Harrington E-Mail: eharring@uvm.edu On-line Office Hours: 2- 4 and 8 9 p.m.

University of Vermont May 21 June 15, 2012 Phone: 802/ 656-3056 (UVM English Dept.) CRN: 61103

Writers who examine the visual and performing arts - and then convey their opinions to others by either print or on-line criticism -- have a unique set of opportunities and responsibilities. They need to be interested in the field that they observe, with a continuing passion to learn more. Being able to judge perceptively, and then to stand by your opinion, with evidence, is important. Finally, developing creative language and style that inform and entertain the reader is necessary for success. Our 3-credit, on-line class will include a general introduction to journalism, with a focus on writing reviews about the visual and performing arts. We will read reviews from The New York Times, The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Vibe, and other sources - and then analyze them for voice, content, language, style, structure, and impact on the reader. Students may use some aspects of these professional reviews -- while developing their own skills and personal style as an arts writer. You will attend (and then write about) two visual arts exhibits and two performing arts events (music or drama) in your local communities. After your first draft, we will use writing exercises to enhance your options for expansion and revision. Detailed feedback from the instructor will be given, on content and structure, as well as grammar and journalistic style. Revisions will be made for a writing portfolio. Finally, any students interested in possible publication of their work will receive assistance with this next step. The Blackboard website for the class includes lecture notes and videos, a discussion board, individual writing journals, links to art reviews, and other resources. Everyone should plan time to allow for attending four arts events during the class. Researching now what will be available in your area this summer would be helpful. Concert tickets may be difficult to obtain later, so you may want to purchase these ahead. Required Text: Working with Words: A Handbook for Media Writers and Editors, 7th edition, by Brian S. Brooks, James L. Pinson, and Jean Gaddy Wilson (ISBN: 0-312-56079-6 or ISBN-13: 9780-312-5607-9) Each student should order it online from: http://www.bedfordstmartins.com/newcatalog.aspx?search=working+with+words&isbn=0312560796 Grading: 65% final writing portfolio (3 original, revised reviews with earlier drafts and a writers statement); 35% responses to readings and writing exercises. Note: Plagiarism of any sort (presenting someone elses writing as your own) is unacceptable at UVM or in this class. These arts reviews will focus on your own observations and opinion, but we will cover the correct way to quote briefly from other sources.