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Epistolary Explorations

Research guide for FYS 183

FYS 183

Epistolary Explorations: The History, Psychology & Art of Letter Writing

When was the last time you sat down and wrote - not typed but "pen and paper" wrote - a letter to someone? Received a letter? This course will examine the importance of letter writing in our culture. We will explore the extent to which, as some cultural critics claim, letter writing is dying and what implications that might have for our culture. But we will also consider alternative possibilities -that, rather than dying, letter writing is assuming new and vital forms. We will look at letter writing as a cultural practice, examining famous letters in a historical context, learning about who writes letters and why, and analyzing the impact of digital technology on letter writing. And yes, there will be some actual letter writing! We will also be writing analyses that engage what scholars in various disciplines wish to teach us about the subject.


Course Site (Muhlenberg One-Login Required)

Possible Topics

Getting Started

To get started with the research and writing process, refer to Get Started with Library Research. If you're interested in using a particular citation guide, refer to this Citation Style Guide page. 

Credo Reference is also a good place to generate ideas on letter-writing topics. 

Wikipedia can also be used to get ideas, background, or potential sources.