Course: Environmental Storytelling
Instructor: Brooke Williams
In January 2018, environmental writer and activist Brooke Williams offered a course in Environmental Storytelling in which students explored the roles of awe, mindfulness, and active imagination in environmental writing. Williams said his students were encouraged to access their “inner hermit” and explore how, as biological beings, they can create effective storytelling to envision a future where all life thrives.
“College courses are quite convergent, in that they come with a goal and a set of assignments and lecture aimed toward that goal,” Mr. Williams said. “My sense is that students also need some guidance in more divergent possibilities, which come as a result of growing self knowledge. I graded them on movement: how much I sensed that they moved toward more self-knowledge.”
Student work included written stories, videos, paintings, a field guide, a piece for saxophone, and prints and photographs.
Cal Waichler ’21 created slides that combined prints she made, quotes and authors that were influential during her writing process, and photographs from a trip she took in Patagonia paired with satellite imagery from the same locations in Patagonia.
Madiha Molani ’20 created a haunting video to accompany a story she wrote.