About the Nonfiction Concentration

 

Led by director Leslie Jamison, the Nonfiction concentration in the Writing Program at Columbia University School of the Arts includes full-time faculty Hilton Als, Lis Harris, Margo Jefferson, Richard Locke, and Phillip Lopate. The adjunct nonfiction faculty members include Michael Greenberg, Eliza Griswold, Alana Newhouse, Lynn Sharon Schwartz, Benjamin Taylor, and Brenda Wineapple.  Recent visiting writers include Meghan Daum, Geoff Dyer, Vivian Gornick, Patricia Hampl, Laura Kipnis, Wayne Koestenbaum, Patricia Marx, Lia Purpura, Stacy Schiff, and John Jeremiah Sullivan.

 

The concentration offers instruction in a full range of subgenres, from memoir and personal essay to science writing, criticism, humor, research methods, profiles, food writing and lyric essay. All students engage with a range of nonfiction prose, from the Ancients to the most cutting-edge contemporaries. They leave the program able to practice more than one type of nonfiction.

 

Upcoming Writing Nonfiction Online Q&A: Tuesday, December 10, 2019, 3:00 pm

 
 

Our nonfiction program offers our students an exciting and supportive community, led by a faculty composed of literary luminaries and passionately committed teachers drawn from the tremendous network of writers and editors based in New York City. Our courses cover a diverse array of genres—including personal essays and memoir, literary reportage, literary and cultural criticism—and our program encourages hybridity, rigor, and experiment.

Leslie Jamison, Nonfiction Concentration Director

Nonfiction News

Six Columbia Writers on the 2020 PEN Longlist

Six Columbia Writers on the 2020 PEN Longlist

Xuan Juliana Wang ’11, Professor Leslie Jamison, Ruchika Tomar ’12, Yvette Siegert '07, Virlana Maria Tkacz ’83 (Theatre) and Wanda Phipps ’83 (Barnard) were included on the 2020 Pen America Literary Awards Longlist.

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Columbia Faculty and Alumni Make the Grade on NPR's Best Books List

Columbia Faculty and Alumni Make the Grade on NPR's Best Books List

NPR’s prestigious end of year list includes Columbia alumni and faculty members like Tina Chang '97, Professor Rivka Galchen '06, Professor Brenda Wineapple, Professor Leslie jamison, Karen Russell '06, Professor Binnie Krishenbaum, and Lauren Wilkinson '13.

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So Many Notables, So Little Time: 'The New York Times' 2019 List of the Best

So Many Notables, So Little Time: 'The New York Times' 2019 List of the Best

The School of the Arts is well represented on this years’ prestigious New York Times Notable Books of the Year list, which includes alumni and faculty members working across all genres, and ranges from veterans of the craft to a debut novelist. 

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