The Pratt MFA in Writing is a 39-credit, two-year program that offers contemporary writers the tools and the support they need to build a practice that is responsive to our rapidly evolving environmental and political times.
Our approach to the MFA curriculum favors collective critique sessions similar to the art-school studio model (where core faculty, guest artists, and peers working in multiple genres, all engage in weekly discussions and presentations of student work). Additionally, students take part in one-to-one guided mentorships, develop fieldwork projects that seek to open their writing practices to the world, and participate in seminars that offer numerous fields of intellectual and creative inquiry: Literature, Media Studies, Performance, Experimental Practices, Activism, and Critical Theory, to name a few.
In this program, students work in a variety of mediums, lineages and forms, including fiction and poetry, performance, nonfiction, translation, cultural criticism, investigative journalism, documentary, digital media, image/text and visual practices. We encourage collaboration and the exploration of hybrid approaches to writing as a set of interactive processes that can potentially generate new and transformative social spaces.
Assistant to the Chair
Full Time Faculty
MFA, California College of the Arts
BA, University of Southern California
MA, Liberal Studies, Grad Center, CUNY
BA, Connecticut college
MFA, Poetry, NYU
MFA, University of Texas, Austin
BA, Pepperdine University
MFA University of Massachusetts, Amherst
BA, State University of Albany
MA, Social Science, State University of Albany
MFA, Poetics, Naropa university
BA, Spelman College
PhD, Duke University
BA, Harvard University
MFA, Milton Avery Graduate School, Bard College
Adjunct Associate Professor
BA, University of Pittsburgh
MFA, Literary Arts, Brown University
E. Tracy Grinnell
Adjunct Associate Professor
MA, Mills College
MFA, Creative Writing Poetry, Brown University
Adjunct Associate Professor, CCE
BA, University of California at Berkeley
MA, Graduate Center, CUNY
MFA, Milton Avery Graduate School, Bard College
Director of Academic Interdisciplinary Initiatives
BA, Princeton University
MA, Columbia University
This course explores special topics in fiction writing and in relevant theory and criticism. May be repeated for credit as topic changes.
The class will be a semester-long praxis lead by the visiting writer or visiting collaborative group currently in residence. The visiting writer/visiting collaborative group will work with students to plan, research, develop, and execute an on-campus or off-campus collaborative project, intervention, performance, or excursion. This section is for graduate students only.
Human language use is an inherently ecological practice in that it participates in forming the way we think, write, and act in regards to the world we share with other living things. As such, language can be used as a force for imagining and establishing new ways of living together, but it must also be scrutinized for the ways in which our past and presents linguistic concepts and strategies have contributed to a history of unsustainable attitudes and practices. In this course, we will read across a broad spectrum of poetry, philosophy, and history-as well as looking at a number of works in other media (film, video, image, and earthworks)-in order to contextualize contemporary ecolinguistic practices. We will also write: in the spirit of experiment and serious play, our poems and essays will test some of the ideas, concepts and orientations we discover along the way.
Mentored Studies (I and II) is one of the core sequences in the graduate Writing Program. This course, Mentored Studies I, allows students to work closely over the semester with their chosen writing Mentor. Through 4-5 targeted meetings, the Mentored Studies class is designed to provide a student with one-on-one contact, advisement, and in-depth creative engagement with their selected mentors.
Mentored Studies (I and II) is one of the core sequences in the graduate Writing Program. This course, Mentored Studies II, allows students to work one-on-one over the semester with their chosen writing mentor in order to seek advice, share knowledge, and receive feedback and guidance on their writing.
The Writing Studio is the core class of the M.F.A. in Writing. It is offered every semester and aims to provide students with an opportunity to have their creative work-in-process critiques in an engaged, dialogic, and collaborative setting by experts in the field. All first and second year M.F.A. students are required to participate. In addition, full-time and participating part-time faculty members will be invited to attend along with affiliated writers, critics, artists, activists, and designers, who will be invited as guest critics.
This is a first year, first-semester foundational reading and discussion-based seminar covering the history and theory of collaborative and engaged writing practices. Students will explore various critical and creative lines of inquiry related to collaborative and expansive writing practices.
This is a second year, first-semester foundational reading and discussion-based seminar that links to and extends Writing Practices I. Under the guidance of a faculty member second year students will collaboratively work with each other and with the professor to suggest texts, speakers, and pedagogical approaches that explore and thematize the history and theory of collaborative and expansive writing practices. The course aims to give students a strong sense of how the theory and tradition behind such approaches can be shared, enacted, and transmitted.
This is a second-year hands-on practice and development residency stretching over two semesters that will oversee students' independent and self-directed and/or group-directed creative and social engagement with an outside organization that complements or inspires their writing and research practices. Guided by a faculty member, students identify an outside community group, activist group, institution, or community willing to host the student as a Writer in Residence. The student, in turn, will collaborate with this organization to develop a range of creative cross-media interventions and collaborations, which will be carried out in the following semester (Fieldwork Residency II).
This is the second of two Fieldwork sequences. It is designed, like the first, as a hands-on practice and development class that will oversee students' creative and social engagement with an outside organization that complements and feeds their writing and research practices. In this class, students collaborate with their outside community group, activist group, institution, or community in order to create and carry out creative collaborations. Students may also found a collaborative group and work together on this Fieldwork project.
This course will be run as an workshop and knowledge-sharing seminar, for students who are completing their M.F.A. thesis. In class, students will share their work-in-progress and receive critical feedback on ways to improve the final thesis. The faculty member running the seminar will guide the discussion of the work-in-progress, suggest resources (other writings, critical/theoretical work, authors, artists, etc.) to improve the thesis, and help to keep the student on track to completion.
This course is for students who have taken WR 604A: Final Thesis/Project and are in the process of producing a Final thesis/project.
The practice and theory of literary translation are subject to and addressed by diverse methods and ideologies, many of which have come to influence the work of contemporary writers both mono- and multi-lingual. In this theory/practice course, we will shift the focus from unidirectional translation-\"source\" language to \"target\" language-to the rich territories of multilingual texts.
In this course, students investigate the theory and practice of radical and experimental prose. The focus of study is primarily on texts by authors that maneuver syntax and language in order to question received habits of reading and writing. This tutorial is both a seminar and a practicum: Students will write a critical paper on one of the prose works we study in the course. Students will also craft a collection of their own prose interventions.
This course will familiarize students with the history of small publishing projects, zines, magazines, and journals, as a foundation for evaluating and participating in our current publishing landscape. Students will edit and publish a collection of new writing, published by the Pratt MFA in Writing Program, in addition to developing their own editorial projects.