Writing: Time and Space

Professor Julia L. Keefer, New York University

This is a cyber-enhanced, multidisciplinary, reading, writing, and thinking course for creative writing, media and communication, literature, computer and social science majors investigating and playing with the different aspects of WRITING IN TIME AND SPACE.


Photo: Michael Gatling

Professor Keefer's multidisciplinary courses consist of CORE MATERIAL, INDIVIDUAL PATHS AND GROUP WORK:


The class project is to design the web sites and theatrical environments off and online for Cyberperformance II: Heaven or Hell? December 19, 1998 at 5:00 p.m.

Class required reading list includes: Of Two Minds: Hypertext Pedagogy and Poetics (Michael Joyce), Hamlet on the Holodeck (Janet Murray), Dante's Inferno, Aristotle's Poetics, and Einstein's Dreams (Alan Lightman.)


Media Studies: Explore and analyse different uses of time and space on the internet and in film. Create hypertextual and temporally and spatially innovative environments for Cyberperformance II: Heaven or Hell? Assist in web design, production and performance.

Creative Writing: Hand in creative writing every week in the genre of your choice (prose, poetry, drama, hypertext, hyperdrama, screenplays, etc.), exploring time and space in terms of structure, subject matter, and the rhythm, dynamics and spatiality of language. Complete a webfolio of your creative work with optional graphics by Dec. 12.

Literature: Trace the lineage of non-linear narrative from Homer to the eighteenth century with writers such as Jonathan Swift and Laurence Sterne, to hypertext of the twentieth century, also examining world literature to see how different cultures place their stories in time and space.See Twentieth Century Writers for affiliated syllabus. Submit a ten page critical paper on a topic of your choice related to cyberperformance and class themes. Become a character from literature for the cyberperformance.

Classes will be held either in the computer lab or the classroom to:
1) Create hyperfiction on the web site (individually and collaboratively), analysing aspects of electronic narrative such as segmentation, navigation, juxtaposition, labyrinths and games as narrative structures, encyclopaedic and kaleiodoscopic storylines and multiple points of view;
2)Read and analyse passages from required and optional reading, comparing traditional and cyberdramaturgy in terms of indeterminacy versus closure;
3) Act out scenes from plays, screenplays and short fiction and then do improvisations to play with layering, branching choices and homospatial and homotemporal structuring

All Keefer's classes, Time and Space, Major Twentieth Century Writers, and Writing Workshop II, Heaven or Hell, will communicate on a listserv throughout the semester to organize CYBERPERFORMANCE II: HEAVEN OR HELL.



Each student will discuss their course objectives, final project and proposed participation in the cyberperformance with Keefer before the third class.

TimeSpace in Dramatic Structures

Photo credit:Albert Lung

Click on the following categories to enter the mysterious world of TimeSpace:
TimeSpace in Classical Greece
TimeSpace in Contemporary Physics
Timespace in Conventional Dramaturgy
TimeSpace in Screenwriting
Non-linear Narrative

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