ENGLISH 240 - Introduction to Poetry
Section: 001 The Jaws that Bite, the Claws that Catch!
Term: WN 2018
Subject: English Language and Literature (ENGLISH)
Department: LSA English Language & Literature
Credits:
3
Requirements & Distribution:
HU
Waitlist Capacity:
unlimited
Repeatability:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Asked to give a definition of poetry, Robert Frost replied, “Poetry is the kind of thing poets write.” We’ll see if we can expand upon that definition just a bit. We’ll read a great deal of poetry (spanning 2,700 years and several continents), and we’ll discuss the specific qualities — of tone, of music, of imagery — that make some poems worth rereading (and rereading, and rereading). We’ll look at forms ranging from the sonnet to the villanelle to the double abecedarian. Along the way we’ll try to get a sense of the imaginative possibilities open to poets, both today and in the past. We’ll find Perry Mason characters facing off in sestinas. We’ll see “The Waste Land” refashioned as a series of limericks. We’ll read poems supposedly scribbled on Wendy’s customer comment cards. At all times, we’ll keep John Berryman’s aim in mind: “to write so good . . . the trolls of language will scream & come over to [our] side.”

Texts will include several anthologies and essay collections, plus a course packet.

Course Requirements:

Assignments will include class reflections (twice a week), memorizations, explications, imitations, competitive forgeries, a midterm exam, and a final paper.

Intended Audience:

Students interested in learning more about — and actively engaging with — poetry.

Class Format:

Discussion

ENGLISH 240 - Introduction to Poetry
Schedule Listing
001 (REC)
P
31883
Open
30
 
-
MW 2:30PM - 4:00PM
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