Course: Life Writing

HC 421H

Professor: Helen Southworth

In this class, we will examine a range of memoir, autobiography and biography.  We will consider the purpose, challenges and pleasures of life writing.  We will look at resources available to the biographer and consider how these have changed with the advent of the internet.  We'll discuss questions of celebrity and obscurity, of iconography and afterlives.  For the final project, students will have the option to undertake a biographical project linked to the Professor's digital humanities project, the Modernist Archive Humanities Project (  Authors/subjects may include Ta-Nehishi Coates, Virginia Woolf, James Baldwin, Sylvia Plath and Helen Macdonald, with theoretical readings by Hermione Lee, Michael Holroyd and Janet Malcolm.