Catherine Wright
Office
Chellis House
Tel
(802) 443-2568
Email
cwwright@middlebury.edu
Office Hours
Tuesdays & Thursdays 1:30-3:00pm and by appointment

My work as teacher and writer lies at the intersection of Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies and Creative and Critical Writing. At this intersection I explore issues of identity and power in relation to writing purposes, practices and productions. These concerns are reflected in my courses which include Outlaw Women, Writing Gender and Sexuality and a proposed course, Feminist Joy. In these classes students draw on anti-oppression theories to interpret literature and compose creative auto-ethnographies. I incorporate contemplation and movement to facilitate an embodied practice of writing.

I’ve earned several awards for my fiction and have published across a wide range of genres, including short fiction, essays, articles and poems, many in women-run presses and feminist magazines such as Negative Capability Journal, Narrative Northeast, The Feminist Wire, Hurricane Alice, Blue Mesa Review andJournal of Gender and Cultural Critique (formerly Phoebe). I’ve also co-authored an oral history book, Vermonters At Their Craft (New England Press), and co-edited a collection of essays, Social Justice Education: Inviting Faculty to Transform Their Institutions (Stylus Press). In collaboration with colleagues, I’ve designed several Mellon-funded projects: Writing Beyond Borders and Social Justice in Higher Education, both designed to facilitate faculty development across liberal arts colleges.

Courses Taught

Course Description

Special Project: Creative Writing
Approval Required.

Terms Taught

Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023

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Course Description

Senior Thesis: Creative Writing
Discussions, workshops, tutorials for those undertaking one-term projects in the writing of fiction, poetry, or creative nonfiction.

Terms Taught

Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022

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Course Description

Special Project: Literature
Approval Required.

Terms Taught

Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022

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Course Description

Five Novellas
An in-between genre, the novella wanders like a novel but narrows in like a short story. In this class we will explore the form and meaning of five novellas by exceptional writers of modern and contemporary fiction. Texts include Toni Morrison’s Sula, Marguerite Duras’ The Lover, Tao Lin’s Shoplifting from American Apparel, Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Jamaica Kincaid’s Lucy. Students will respond to the literature through informal writing, formal literary analysis, and the art of narrative criticism. We will discuss constructions of race, gender, dis/ability, class, and sexuality as well as investigate notions of home, family, and faith. 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Fall 2019

Requirements

CW, LIT

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Course Description

Writing Gender and Sexuality
In this course we will read, discuss, and write creative works that explore issues of gender and sexuality. Readings will include stories, poems, and essays by James Baldwin, Ana Castillo, Peggy Munson, Eli Claire, Alice Walker, Michelle Tea, Alison Bechdel, and others. The course will include writing workshops with peers and individual meetings with the instructor. Every student will revise a range of pieces across genres and produce a final portfolio. We will do some contemplative work and will engage with choreographer to explore movement in conversation with writing, gender, and sex. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2018, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022

Requirements

ART

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Course Description

Feminist Joy
In this course we will examine a range of discourses about pleasure, happiness, and joy as well as explore these topics more experientially. How have feminists interrupted gendered, raced, and ableist notions of happiness? As Sara Ahmed asks, can there be joy in being the “killjoy”? What is the role of laughter and joy in survival, anti-oppression work, and healing from trauma? We will trace the "pleasurable feminisms" of leading Black feminists and sex positive feminists such as Audre Lorde, adrienne maree brown, Alexis Pauline Gumbs, Gayle Rubin, Betty Dodson, as well as investigate our own inherited and intentional perceptions of pleasure. Assignments will include research, writing and workshops. 3 hrs. lect. This course is part of the Public Humanities Labs Initiative administered by the Axinn Center for the Humanities.*

Terms Taught

Spring 2022

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Outlaw Women
In this course we will read and discuss literary texts that feature women who defy social norms: daring survivors, scholars, “whores,” queers, artists, servants, revolutionaries. Texts include Powell’s The Pagoda, Duras’s The Lover, Lorde’s Zami, and Nafisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran. The course will take postcolonial and global approaches to desire and difference and to narratives of resistance, rescue and freedom. We will discuss rhetorical practices, such as écriture féminine, and readerships, such as women’s book groups, through a transnational lense. Students will develop their critical imaginations through discussion, contemplation, research, and analytical and creative writing. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021

Requirements

CMP, CW, LIT, SOC

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Course Description

Independent Study
(Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023

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Course Description

Senior Essay
(Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023

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Course Description

Senior Thesis
(Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023

View in Course Catalog

Course Description

Writing Gender and Sexuality
In this course we will read, discuss, and write creative works that explore issues of gender and sexuality. Readings will include stories, poems, and essays by James Baldwin, Ana Castillo, Peggy Munson, Eli Claire, Alice Walker, Michelle Tea, Alison Bechdel, and others. The course will include writing workshops with peers and individual meetings with the instructor. Every student will revise a range of pieces across genres and produce a final portfolio. We will do some contemplative work and will engage with choreographer to explore movement in conversation with writing, gender, and sex. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2019

Requirements

ART

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Course Description

Writing Race and Class
In this course we will take a literary and intersectional approach to topics of race and class. Readings include stories, essays, poems and videos by writers such as James Baldwin, Audre Lorde, Gloria Anzaldúa and Kelly Tsai. Students will respond to critical and creative writing prompts, conduct fieldwork, and design two writing projects of their own. The class format will include conversations with guest writers, writing workshops, contemplative activities, and individual conferences with the instructor. Students will preferably have prior experience in discussing issues of race and class, although introductory theories will be made available to provide frameworks for discussion.

Terms Taught

Winter 2020, Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022

Requirements

CW, LIT, SOC

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Course Description

Independent Research
(Approval Required)

Terms Taught

Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023

View in Course Catalog