From February onwards, we’ll be looking at a wide range of twentieth-century poetry—covered in lecture-discussions and in presentations. The presentations will involve several of you working on the same poem/poet: you’ll have the option of worki ng closely with others, or on your own. Before second term starts, I’ll email the class with a provisional list of topics to choose from. The test on April 12th will cover all material discussed in class in second term, and, like the Jan uary 18th test (see below), will consist of short extracts for commentary. The in-class essay on March 1st will probably get you to write an essay comparing the treatment of one broad issue (e.g., creation, retirement) in thr ee or four poems from the whole syllabus.
From February onwards, we’ll also be applying selected readings from Culler’s Literary Theory: a very short introduction to a selection of poems that we have already covered in class. For instance, we may apply feminist and Marxist theory to Leapor’s "Epistle of Deborah Dough". There will be options for some of you to do presentations of this kind.
Syllabus for the first few weeks
Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834), "Kubla Khan" (180)
Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), "The City in the Sea" (248)
John Keats, "La belle dame sans merci" (221)
Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892), "The Lady of Shalott" (255)
Christina Rossetti (1830-1894), "Goblin Market" (324)
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, "Ulysses" (264)
Robert Browning (1812-1889), "The Bishop Orders His Tomb at Saint Praxed’s Church" (279)
TEST #1: Thursday January 18th (10%)
Matthew Arnold (1822-1888), "Dover Beach" (307)
Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), "The Darkling Thrush" (343)
William Butler Yeats (1865-1939), "Sailing to Byzantium" (401)