Though yesterday’s post on the relationship between creative writing and this week’s terrible events at Virginia Tech hasn’t yet gleaned any public comments here, I have received a number of private e-mails about it (and believe me, the site stats/referral pages show readers are coming to the blog specifically because that post is here). Since the topic is now attracting more attention elsewhere, today I’ll provide some sources for further information/reflection:
At InsiderHigherEd.com you can find Elizabeth Redden’s “When Creative Writing Provides a Clue” as well as a number of reader comments.
At Harriet, the Poetry Foundation’s blog, you can find Emily Warn’s “Responding to Violent Poems in the Classroom”.
And it turns out that poet Nikki Giovanni (who provided the rousing closing moments for Tuesday’s Convocation on the Virginia Tech campus) seems to have been the instructor who brought the future gunman’s alarming behavior/writings to Lucinda Roy’s attention (again, see yesterday’s post for that background). Last night Giovanni appeared on CNN on both Paula Zahn’s show and Larry King’s. You’ll need to scroll down each transcript for her comments, including this from the Paula Zahn appearance: “You’d be amazed at what we get in creative writing, not to mention across the campus. You get a lot of expression. Some of it would be troubling, and in Cho’s case, some of it — you know, some was a troubling youngster that, frankly speaking, I didn’t think I could help. That didn’t mean he was beyond help.”