This article investigates the ambivalent reception of Kenneth Goldsmith’s Uncreative Writing by the French author and writing workshop facilitator François Bon. Although admiring Goldsmith’s radical poetics, Bon hesitates when it comes to integrating digitally-driven uncreative writing methods in his own workshop. In one entry on his personal website, Bon proposes a détournement of Goldsmith’s experimental practices in the form of a return to the novel. To account for this ambivalence on the part of Bon, this article takes the contexts of American creative writing and the French atelier d’écriture into account. It argues that the novelty of Goldsmith’s project can be understood by considering not only its implication in digital culture, but also its continuous discursive resistance against the poetics of creative writing, especially as they appear in how-to-write handbooks. Moreover, it considers Bon’s departure from Goldsmith in the context of, on the one hand, a contemporary atelier d’écriture that hardly instructs the basics of prose writing and, on the other, of a history of French creative writing that has always incorporated and was even shaped by the questions and conceptions that Goldsmith’s project puts forward.
"Transatlantic Détournement? An Institutional Perspective on François Bon’s Reception of Kenneth Goldsmith’s Uncreative Writing,"
Journal of Creative Writing Studies: Vol. 3:
1, Article 1.
Available at: https://repository.rit.edu/jcws/vol3/iss1/1