HEGRKE241U Cancelled ‘Apricot Trees Exist’: Creative Environmental Reading and Writing in English

Volume 2024/2025



In this series of hands-on workshops we investigate climate crisis and the more-than-human/human interdependence by composing multimodal texts in response to recent Copenhagen University and international research. You do not need background in natural sciences (if you have it, it’s a bonus) – you need curiosity, commitment (regular attendance) and willingness to experiment creatively with the environmental knowledge you gain thanks to independent study, workshop practice, field trips and guests: scientists, activists and artists.


These creative collaborations invite us to rethink such concepts as ‘nature,’ ‘sustainability’ and ‘care’ by reading, watching and listening to a variety of academic, literary and artistic texts. We combine science, emotion and creative expression not only to describe environmental loss, grief and vulnerability but also to celebrate the Earth and biodiversity. We appreciate complex ecological interactions by working on our own projects: to explore environmental subjects that fascinate us and to experiment with diverse forms of communicating them to varied audiences. Our research-based, hybrid, multimodal works-in-progress (which may develop beyond the course) are forms of our green thinking, slow art, activism and stewardship.


On this course you will:

  • engage in ‘two-eyed seeing’: combine scientific learning with writing, drawing, sketching, photographing, filming etc. to deepen your understanding of current environmental knowledge and your communication strategies;
  • discuss environmental studies and reporting (both academic and popular) from ecocritical perspectives;
  • read, watch, listen to non-academic multimodal environmental genres: nonfiction, fiction, poetry, posters, comics, graphic novels, plays, podcasts, sound works, songs, film poems, visual artworks, installations, performances, etc.;
  • conduct literature review on the environmental subject of your choice;
  • experiment with various creative forms (braided essay, zine, poster, stop-motion animation, audio work, artist’s book, etc.) to diversify your environmental storytelling for different audiences;
  • reflect on what it means to be ecologically aware and ethically responsible as an individual, academic communicator and creative.

Selected scholarly articles and multimodal texts/ artworks that represent the wealth of ecocritical thinking and environmental researching/ writing/ artmaking; guest talks/ field trips by environmental humanists, scientists, activists; masterclasses with invited artists. IMPORTANT: please note the hands-on format of this course requires regular participation in workshop activities – we create in class; therefore, you cannot make up for your absences by merely reading texts at home.

Over the semester you explore selected environmental studies, literary texts and visual artworks. You develop your ecocritical awareness and communication skills by conducting literature reviews, sharing your findings with peers, creating research-based multimodal texts/ works and thinking of diverse audiences. All these investigations and materials contribute to your exam portfolio.
Kurset udbydes som en del af studiemønstret Writing in English (kurset Creative Writing Workshop), samt som KA-tilvalg.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 56
  • Preparation
  • 353,5
  • Total
  • 409,5
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)
Type of assessment
Portfolio, A joint portfolio uploaded in digital exam: Deadline January 6th 2025
Type of assessment details
Portfolio details:
• literature review based on at least 3 sources; samples of your work-in-progress (including drafts); feedback on your peers’ drafts (max. 14 pages);
• synopsis for the presentation of your individual project/work-in-progress and reflection on the presentation (max. 3 pages)
• essay discussing your development as an ecocritical thinker and environmental communicator (max. 8 pages ).
Criteria for exam assesment