This course aims to sharpen students’ sensibility in encountering poetry deeply. Students will be guided in new ways to meet and negotiate a poem; to widen their knowledge of literary conventions overall, whether as English majors or as concentrators in other fields; and to look with fresh eyes at historical and contextual frames that change the way we not only read but widen our world views.




This is an interactive course with group discussions, class practices, and readings, all of which will address your senses as well as your critical skills in the field. We will meet once a week for three hours. We will study in detail, and widely, to give depth and scope. We will also pay attention to poetry as beautifully-wrought craft and socially-mediated construct.




Coursework accounts for 100% of your grade and will depend on:

-Participation in lecture, writing practices, homework assignments (30%);
-A mid-term assignment (30%);
-Final paper or project (40%)




Readings may include works by Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, William Carlos Williams, Allen Ginsberg, Robert Hass, Adrienne Rich, Seamus Heaney, Henri Cole, David Malouf, Jack Gilbert, Donald Justice, Pablo Neruda, Adam Zagajewski, Ocean Vuong, and Jenny Xie. Handouts will also include essays, interviews, and personal essays on a selected bibliography.



Last updated: 12 July 2019