4-Week: Reading as a Writer--The Hybrid Forms of Sarah Manguso and Maggie Nelson


Hybrid forms are seeing a tremendous rise in contemporary literary popularity. In this class, we’ll tap into this modern fervor by reading two recent hallmarks of the genre. Maggie Nelson’s The Argonauts is a text of “autotheory” that tightropes between Nelson’s personal experiences (her pregnancy, her relationship with her fluidly gendered partner, and her own sexuality) and her critical eye toward our contemporary culture surrounding gender. Similarly, Sarah Manguso’s 300 Arguments is, at first glance, a group of unrelated aphorisms, but to read them is to witness acrobatic acts of compression in the service of extraordinary psychological and spiritual insight about desire, ambition, and the failure, all of which add up to an unexpected, renegade wisdom literature. 

By closely reading each of these texts, students will gain a greater insight into the different forms the hybrid genre can take—what experiments an author undertakes, if these experiments are successful, and why. The class will open doors for students’ own work to take greater risks as well as be able to explain how and why they’ve taken these risks. Come ready to experiment with reading and then have your own writing evolve before your eyes.
Required Texts:*

The Argonauts, by Maggie Nelson
300 Arguments, by Sarah Manguso

*Copies of these books are available to Lighthouse students at a 10% discount at the Tattered Cover on Colfax. Simply tell a Tattered Cover employee you are enrolled in a course at Lighthouse and they will direct you to where the books are shelved. 

Upcoming Sessions:
  • Spring 2017
    Instructor: Alexander Lumans, MFA
    Starts: 03/22/2017
    Time(s): 6:30 to 8:30 PM

    Cost: $195.00 members / $220.00 non-members
    Location: RM. 202 (John Steinbeck Room) - Lighthouse Writers Workshop
    1515 Race Street, Denver, CO 80206
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