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Let’s Play: Wayward Sentences

Teachers
Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Shiraz Abdullahi Gallab
Date
Section 1: March 27, 2024 to May 29, 2024
Section 2: March 30, 2024 to June 1, 2024

(10 classes)
Time
Section 1: Wednesdays, 6pm-9pm ET, Section 2: Saturdays 1pm-4pm ET
Location
Online (Zoom)
Cost
$1200 Scholarships available learn more...
Deadline
Applications closed on February 4, 2024

Apply Now

Description

Wayward Sentences explores writing constraints as a method to generate more feral and intuitive writing. In this course, we will explore the erotics of constraint – or the pleasure of having something withheld – a letter, a syntax, a structure, a line of code. This course invites learners to use gentle coding, the affordances of hyperlinks, and OuLiPo(ish) and FLUXUS(ish) constraints to generate new writing. In addition to new writing, learners are also invited to design scores, prompts, and constraints for future writers and future selves. In this course, among many others, we will explore Saidiya Hartman and Emily Dickinson's language of "waywardness"; Fred Moten's question - "Is there an underground railroad in the sentence?" in conversation with Renee Gladman's work; Clarice Lispector's assertion that "writing is a method of using the word as bait..."; Alexis Pauline Gumbs’ concept of “ancestrally cowritten texts”; and what Harryette Mullen has stated as an interest in “word games, such as acrostics, anagrams, paragrams, lipograms, univocalics, tautograms, charades, homophones, spoonerisms, and palindromes.” No coding experience is needed for this course. We are doing gentle coding supported by templates and extensive modeling. What is most needed is a desire to play and be played with.

Images courtesy of teachers.

Course of Study

  • Week 1: Writing as a Collaborative Erotic Practice - Constraints, Scores, and Ergodic Texts
  • Week 2: Writing ACROSS ______________ - Substrates/Interfaces/Stages: Browsers, Page, Walls, Sky; Species: Lichen, Snail Mucus, and Spider Webs; Realms: Divination, Ancestor Veneration, Lucid Dreaming
  • Week 3: THE BROWSER IS NOT THE BOOK PAGE - Writing with CSS and HTML; History of these languages and evolution of CMSs/website editors
  • Week 4-5: ELSEWHERE, OVER THERE - Writing with hyperlinks, URL redirection, pop-ups, rollovers, alternate scrolling, and interstitial webpages; History of Hypertext and Hypermedia
  • Week 6-7: RANDOM, RANDOM, RANDOM - Writing with JavaScript, Text Generators, and Google Sheets Formulas
  • Week 8: INPUT FIELD - Writing with user inputs, twine, and itch.io
  • Week 9-10: PERFORMANCE, DOCUMENTATION, PRESERVATION? - [anti]-performance, [anti]-documentation and [anti]-preservation of browser-based writing

Expectations

Time & Workload
  • Participants will be expected to spend time outside class creating browser-based writing weekly. The amount of work you take on each week is self-determined. You set the scope and depth of each task.
Materials
  • Laptop with Wi-Fi and Browser
  • Glitch Account

Is this class for me?

This class may be for you if:

  • You want to write but feel stuck writing on a single sheet of paper or in a wordprocessor
  • You have an interest in reading and writing as a collaborative, interactive, and playful process
  • You have an interest in browser experiences other than shopping or reading highly curated content

This class may NOT be for you if:

  • You want to learn professional web development
  • You don’t like to play

Meet the Teachers

teacher

Kameelah Janan Rasheed

A learner, Kameelah Janan Rasheed grapples with the poetics of Black knowledge production, information technologies, [un]learning, and belief formation. Most recently, she is a recipient of a 2022 Schering Stiftung Award for Artistic Research; a 2022 Creative Capital Award; a 2022 Betty Parsons Fellow – Artists2Artists Art Matters Award; a 2022 Artists + Machine Intelligence Grants - Experiments with Google; and a 2021 Guggenheim Fellowship in Fine Arts. Rasheed is the author of five artist's books: in the coherence, we weep (KW Institute for Contemporary Art, 2023); i am not done yet (Mousse Publishing, 2022); An Alphabetical Accumulation of Approximate Observations (Endless Editions, 2019); No New Theories (Printed Matter, 2019); and the digital publication Scoring the Stacks (Brooklyn Public Library, 2021). Her writing has appeared in Triple Canopy, The New Inquiry, Shift Space, Active Cultures, and The Believer. She is an adjunct instructor at the Cooper Union, a Critic at Yale School of Art, Sculpture, and an instructor at the School for Poetic Computation. Rasheed is represented by NOME Gallery in Berlin, Germany.

she/her · website · twitter · instagram

teacher

Shiraz Abdullahi Gallab

Shiraz Abdullahi Gallab is a designer, educator and publisher who was born but not raised in Khartoum, Sudan. She is interested in language, form and specificity, alongside media, Black studies and popular culture.

she/they · website

Accessibility

Our programs are conducted in spoken English with audiovisual materials such as slides, code examples and video. Online programs are held over Zoom.

Please take care and be well. We hope you are comfortable in your housing, living, and working situation in general. Never hesitate to ask us for advice and reach out if you have accessibility requests or need any assistance during your time at SFPC. We will work closely with you towards co-creating the most accommodating learning environment for your needs.

reach out with questions about access...

How do I apply?

Apply Now

What is your favorite website?

Applications open until Applications closed on February 4, 2024.

You can expect to hear back from us about the status of your application on February 19, 2024. Please email us at admissions@sfpc.study with any questions you have.

more about what we look for in participants...

How much does it cost to attend?

For 10 classes, it costs $1200 + processing fees, for a one-time payment. We also offer payment plans. Participants can schedule weekly or monthly payments of the same amount. First and last payments must be made before the start and end of class. *Processing fees apply for each payment.

SFPC processes all payments via Withfriends and Stripe. Please email admissions@sfpc.study if these payment options don't work for you.

Upon payment, your space in the class will be reserved. We offer scholarships for those who cannot pay full tuition. Read more about scholarships below.

I can’t pay for SFPC. Can I come at a reduced rate, or for free?

If you can’t pay full tuition, we really still want you to apply. Our application will ask you how much you can pay. We will offer subsidized positions in all of our classes, once each one has enough participants enrolled that we’re able to do so.

We have also started a scholarship fund, and we will be offering additional scholarships as community members redistribute their wealth through SFPC. We direct scholarship funds towards participants who are low-income, Black, Indigenous, racialized, gendered, disabled, Queer, trans, oppressed, historicially excluded and underrepresented.

Right now, tuition is SFPC’s main source of income, and that is a problem. It means that we can only pay teachers, pay for space, and organize programs when participants pay full tuition to attend. Tuition is a huge barrier to entry into the SFPC community, and it disproportionately limits Black participants, indigenous participants, queer and trans participants, and other people who are marginalized, from participating. Scholarships are not a long term solution for us, but in the short and medium term we hope to offer them more while we work towards transforming SFPC’s financial model.

How can I help others to attend SFPC?

For SFPC to be the kind of place the community has always meant it to be, it needs to become a platform for wealth redistribution. If you are a former participant, prospective participant, or friend of the school, and you have the financial privilege to do so, please donate generously. There is enough wealth in this community to make sure no one is ever rejected because of their inability to pay, and becoming that school will make SFPC the impactful, imaginative, transformative center of poetry and justice that we know it can be.

What if I can’t go, can I get a refund?

  • Yes, we can give you 100% refund up to 10 days before class starts
  • 50% refund after 10 days, until the first day of the class
  • No refunds can be given after the first day of the class

Interested in more learning opportunities at the School for Poetic Computation? Join our newsletter to stay up to date on future sessions and events, and follow us on Instagram and Twitter. Support our programming through scholarships. Get in touch over email.