Electronic Literature / Introduction
- Intro: syllabus, e-lit genres, Computation and networks
- Blogging, writing about e-lit
- Tools: ELL, twine, exercises
Language Arts & Combinatory Poetics
- Genres of Electronic Literature and Combinatory Poetics, Rettberg
- Taroko Gorge, Nick Monfort
Blog: Read the first two chapters or Rettberg’s book, Electronic Literature. View 2-3 versions of Taroko Gorge and look at the source code of each. Make a post about how these works were written. What do you take to be the meaning of these texts? What is the effect of combinatory writing on the reader?
TALK: collage, combinatory writing and language art, aleatoric, stochastic, variable, deterministic, combinatory, recombinant
silent Film, Hollis Frampton, Robert Beaver, Kluge, Godard
exquisite corpse, cut-ups and N+7, Taroko Gorge
Hypertext Fiction 1
- Hypertext Fiction, Rettberg,
- The Babysitter, Robert Coover
Blog: After reading the Rettberg chapter on Hypertext and Coover’s “The Babysitter” (take your time with this one!), discuss your thoughts about how Coover’s story is a model for later works of Hypertext. How does the story’s structure involve the reader in multiple narrative paths?
discuss The Babysitter
TALK: Hypertext, Spatial Writing, Storyspace
Intro to lab
formats: floppy, cd-rom
demo: afternoon, a story
start small-group readings:
Hypertext Fiction 2
- Interview with Shelley Jackson
- The End of Books, by Robert Coover (1992)
- WHY NO ONE CLICKED ON THE GREAT HYPERTEXT STORY, by Steven Johnson (2013)
Blog: With the advent of social media, hypertext is no longer a novel feature of digital writing. However, the growing Twine community is showing a renewed interest in hypertext fiction. Based on Rettberg’s book so far, the articles above and the in-class reading of “afternoon, a story”, share your thoughts about the future of hypertext fiction as a literary form. Can the link-structure, nonlinearity and fragmentation of hypertext express something of our world that print cannot?
continue small-group readings
reports and Discussions
Net Art & Hypermedia
- Grammatron, Mark Amerika (view High Bandwidth version)
- My Boyfriend Came Back from the War, Olia Lialina
- World of Awe, by Yael Kanarek, 2000.
- An Introduction to Net Art
- About Grammatron
- About My Boyfriend Came Back from the War
- About World of Awe
Choose one of the works to read/explore in-depth and write a post reflecting on themes explored so far: multilinearity, variability, combinatory poetics, intertextuality, reflexivity, navigation structures, the relations or tensions between image, sound, text. How do these online works differ from the earlier published hypertext fiction?
Talk: Net Art
small-groups readings and reports
net art exercise
Interactive Fiction & Narrative Games
Read: Interactive Fiction and Other Game-like Forms
- Galatea, Emily Short (2000)
- Ad Verbum, by Nick Monfort (2001)
- Deviant: The Possession of Christian Shaw, by Donna Leishman (2004)
- Game Game Game and Game Again, Jason Nelson (2006)
- Howling Dogs, by Porpentine (2012)
- With Those We Love Alive, Porpentine (2014)
- Device 6 (iOS only)
- Blackbar (android and iOS)
Blog: After reading Rettberg’s chapter on the evolution and variety of digital literary games, explore the works listed above and choose at least two to explore in-depth. Compare the uses of game interaction to communicate narrative or poetic ideas. How do game goals and puzzles involve the “interactor” in finding meaning in the works? Are there clear goals or is the game framework an excuse to explore more literary ideas? How do the works engage your imagination?
TALK: Interactive Narratives
ELD Entry (20%)
Write a research entry for the Electronic Literature Directory (ELD) about a term or a work of a electronic literature. The essay should be 500-750 words and include a bibliography, screen gabs or screen captures. A list of terms and works will be provided.
- First draft is due 03/01 – 5%
- Final draft is due 03/22 – 15%
Kinetic and Interactive Poetry
Read: Kinetic and Interactive Poetry, Rettberg
- Dreamlife of Letters, by Brian Kim Stefans
- Sound Poems, by Jörg Piringer
- Shy Boy, by Tom Swiss (more of Tom Swiss)
- The Ballad of Soot and Sand, by Stephanie Strickland
- Cruising, by Ingrid Ankerson and Megan Sapnar
- A is for Apple, by David Clark
- Tachistoscope, William Poundstone
- Rain on the Sea, by Y0UNG-HAE CHANG HEAVY INDUSTRIES
- SOFTIEs and MUDs David Jhave Johnson
Blog: After reading Rettberg’s chapter, explore the works of digital poetry listed above. Choose 2-3 that most interest you for a more in-depth discussion of the works in the context of modernist poetry practices such as “concrete poetry”, symbolism, futurism, visual poetry or “vispo”, sound poetry and film poetry.
Live Stream Traversal of Richard Holeton’s Figurski at Findhorn on Acid: 2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
- YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzeZQ05p_1Tli0lDBeWMxOA/live
- Twitter: #elitpathfinders
TALK: Digital Poetry
digital poetry exercise
- Cityfish, JR Carpenter (10-15 min)
- 88 constellations, David Clark (30-60 min)
- Loss of Grasp, Serge Bouchardon (30-60 min)
- FilmText, Mark Amerika (30-60 min)
- How to Rob a Bank – Part 4, Alan Bigelow (10-15 min)
Blog: Explore the works above so that you are at least familiar with how they employ multimedia, kinetic typography, interactivity, game-like features, navigation, multi-linearity, fragmentation, juxtaposition, narrative sequence and interface design to create fictional spaces. Then choose two or three works to explore in-depth. How do the works generate their fictional worlds? How do you “understand” the works as fictions? Are there plots and characters? Are these works immersive, abstract or some combination of the two? Make screen grabs of portions of the works to support your observations.
TALK: Multimedia Fiction
add media to Twine Projects
Draft of ELD Entry Due
Read: Network Writing, Rettberg
Blog: Explore the works below so that you get familiar with some of the genres of network writing as described by Rettberg. How is the network, often invisible to us as we “engage” online, made visible in these works? What is the literary value of these works? Do they engage emotionally? Do they stimulate your thinking about the networks we live with?
- degenerative and regenerative, Tiselli (flarf)
- I Love Alaska, by Lernert Engelberts and Sander Plug (flarf)
- MEZANGELLE, by Mez Breeze _cross.ova.ing ][4rm.blog.2.log][_
- The Fall of the Site of Marsha, by Rob Wittig (webpage fiction)
- Blue Company, Rob Wittig (email novel)
- heyharryheymatilda by Rachel Hulin (instagram novel)
- The Listeners, John Cayley (net critique)
TALK: Network Writing
Final Essays (35%)
Write an 2500-3000 word digital essay or research paper about a particular work or a comparison of 2-3 works; or about processes, techniques, themes and/or genres discussed in class. The topic is quite open. Use in-class scholarly readings, screen grabs/captures and any outside resources that you find helpful. Please provide a bibliography for all resources and citations.
Create a work of electronic literature (with Twine or HTML) that explores themes/topics/processes discussed in class. The creative work should include a 500-1000 word artist statement discussing the ideas you are exploring in the work. It should engage with class readings.
- Topics must be emailed to me for approval.
- You may use Twine or HTML to present your paper.
Read: Divergent Streams, Rettberg
Blog: Which of the new forms from “divergent streams” discussed by Rettberg interest you most? Why? What literary possibilities are there in virtual and augmented worlds?
Descriptions of Final Essays Due (250 words)
TALK:VR and AR fiction
View VR and AR works
Blog: Read/view the first half of Pry and take notes and screengrabs on 2-3 sections that intrigue or puzzle you. Comment on how the these moments relate to the unfolding story. Comment on the interface, navigation and/or the montage of text and video. What is this work about?
Set up Essay Meetings with me (5%)
TALK: expanded and computational cinema
Read: Pry (Part 5, 6, 7, 8, Epilogue)
Blog: Finish Pry taking notes and screengrabs on 1-2 sections that intrigue or puzzle you. Comment on how the these moments relate to the unfolding story. Comment on the interface, navigation and/or the montage of text and video.
What is this work about? What are some themes? What is the plot? How does form relate to content?
ELD Entry Due
Dene Grigar visit
- What in the world is ambient literature?
- A Short History of Location-based Writing
- Breathe (mobile/augmented), Kate Pullinger (read on phone)
Blog: No post
TALK: Mobile Fiction
Make Campus Walks…
Mobile Fiction Presentations
Campus Fiction Walks…
Oral Presentations (5%)
Oral Presentations (5%)
Final Essays Due April 30th at Midnight