“You Are a Ffabschrifter”

12 May

Students of Lucinda Hitchcock and Rachel Ossip’s Shaping Language course spent the semester “ffabschrifting” — treating writing as making and making as writing and simultaneously creating content and form, each with the other in mind. The class hosted a final event/party downtown in the Design Office last night.

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Each student read their own poem/story/definition of “ffabschrifting,” and Hitchcock and Ossip read a transcript — no, a ffabschrift — of their own previous conversation about the course’s development and all the brilliant, unexpected ways students took on the role of ffabschrifter. This variety sparked some engaging debate: on the one hand, it seems like we are all ffabschrifters, whether we know it or acknowledge it or embrace it or not; at the same time, purposeful and conscious attention made all the difference to everyone’s process and resulting work.

The group then invited visitors into the discussion with some questions: Does ffabschrifting have to involve text? Is it limited to just writing and making? Is “ffabschrifting” the right word for what’s happening here? Amid all these loose ends, one thing was certain: ffabschrifting is more than a practice — it’s a movement. We love these ideas and these questions, and can’t wait to see how the movement advances.

Check out some of the class’s work on their website: http://shapinglanguage.tumblr.com/

The Shaping Language course will be offered to GD seniors and grad students again next year (and non-majors with permission from the instructor).

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