2014 - Spring: Reporting Social Worlds

Course Number: JOUR-GA 1182.007

Day & Time: Thursday, 4:00pm-7:40pm

Location: Library

Instructor: Amy Waldman

The focus of this course will be reporting on the myriad small worlds and social groups—generated by social identities, hangouts, neighborhoods, institutions, occupations, beliefs, interests—that define the texture of contemporary life and increasingly shape the news, especially in a city as culturally rich and various as New York. Writing, reading, and discussion will emphasize constructing a narrative and observing and describing the details essential to depicting social and cultural milieus with accuracy and power. Students will also be expected to pay close attention to the assumptions and thought processes that go into shaping their stories. The best writing on social groups and milieus reflects both assiduous attention to reporting and a strong, individual voice and vision. We all belong to a variety of social worlds, and the better we understand our own relationship to those worlds, the more we will be prepared as journalists to understand other people’s.