The Art of Interpreting and Building a Book

by Rachel Baker on August 27, 2013

What would happen if you were asked to represent the physical structure of your favorite book? Could you do it? The idea, how to, and pictures of this awesome project are at the link.

When we read a novel, a short story or a work of non-fiction, there is often a moment when we have the feeling that we have entered a structure built, knowingly or unknowingly, by the writer. I am not talking about the ability to picture in our minds the locations or architectural settings described in the text, but, rather, the sense of being immersed in a space designed by someone else.

At a course called the Laboratory of Literary Architecture, which I teach at the Scuola Holden, a creative writing school in Turin, and also, this past term, at Columbia University School of the Arts in New York, I encourage the students to find – or, rather, extract – and then physically build the literary architecture of a text.

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