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CW2030 Poetry

Summer Reading List 2016-17

Aims and Objectives

Welcome to CW2030. In this course we will work through some of the fundamental elements of poetry: subject, duration, image, language, sound, rhythm, visual poetics, performance, etc.  We shall do so through encountering and discussing different approaches to and examples of these fundamental elements as they arise in poetry as well as in background readings across an historical range and between disciplinary boundaries.

The course aims to develop your familiarity with a variety of techniques available to the contemporary poet, thereby informing and enhancing your own creative practice.  It likewise aims to further your understanding and appreciation of poetry as an artistic medium of thought and communication.  The course will concentrate on lyric rather than dramatic or narrative poetry; however, throughout the course you will be encouraged to expand your creative practice alongside your thinking; to write and consider longer sequences of poems as well as alternative styles of poetic practice.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course you will have:

(a)  become familiar with a number of devices and structures used in poetry;

(b)  explored these devices and structures in you own writing;

(c)  encountered and critically assessed some examples of poetic practice;

(d)  produced a portfolio of short poems;

(e)  further developed your critical abilities.

You will become increasingly familiar with a range of methodologies current in contemporary creative practice and begin to consider how to develop this in relation to your own practice and professionalisation as contemporary writers. You will develop your own independent poetic writing practice in order to prepare you for undertaking a larger scale independent writing project in your final year.

Summer Trip

Please take a number of excursions into the thriving work of UK poetry at some point this summer. Here are some listings:

Summer Reading

Please have a read through the following books relating to the theory and practice of writing lyric poetry:

  • Casterton, Julia. Creative Writing: A Practical Guide. London: Palgrave, 2005.
  • Hollander, Jon. Vision and Resonance: Two Senses of Poetic Form. New Haven, Conn.: Yale U Press, 1985.
  • Kinzie, Mary. A Poet’s Guide To Poetry. Chicago: U of Chicago, 1999. 
  • Lindley, David. Lyric.  London: Methuen, 1985.
  • Riley, Denise.  Lyric Selves: Identification, Solidarity, Irony.  Stanford: Stanford UP, 2000. 
  • Strachan, John and Richard Terry. Poetry: Elements of Literature.  Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2000.

Please have a look through the following anthologies that offer a sense of the context in which your contemporary poetic practice is situated. Please then choose (at least one) to purchase. You will draw from this throughout the year, and especially in Term 2.

  • Byrne, James and Clare Pollard, eds.  Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century.  Northumberland: Bloodaxe Books, 2009.
  • Dumanis, Michael and Cate Marvin, editors. Legitimate Dangers: American Poets of the New Century. Louisville, KY: Sarabande Books.
  • Etter, Carrie, ed.  Infinite Difference: Other Poetries by UK Women Poets. London: Shearsman, 2010.
  • Ferguson, Margaret Mary, Jo Salter, Jon Stallworthy, eds. The Norton Anthology of Poetry. Fifth Edition. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1996. 
  • Hamilton, Nathan, ed..  Dear World and Everyone In It.  London: Bloodaxe, 2013.
  • Hollander, Jon. Vision and Resonance: Two Senses of Poetic Form. New Haven, Conn.: Yale U Press, 1985.
  • Hoover, Paul, ed. The Norton Anthology of Postmodern American Poetry.  New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1994. 
  • Lumsden, Roddy, ed.  Identity Parade:  New British and Irish Poets.  Northumberland: Bloodeaxe Books, 2010.
  • McClatchy, J. D., ed. The Vintage Book of Contemporary World Poetry. London: Vintage Books, 1996.
  • Morrison, Blake & Andrew Motion, eds.  The Penguin Book of Contemporary British Poetry.  London: Penguin, 1993.
  • O’Sullivan, Maggie, ed. Out of Everywhere. London: Reality Street, 1996.
  • Swenson, Cole and David St. John, eds. American Hybrid: A Norton Anthology of Poetry.  W. W. Norton & Co., 2009.
  • Rothenberg, Jerome, and Pierre Joris, eds., Poems for the Millennium: The University of California Book of Modern and Postmodern Poetry, Volume 2: From Postwar to Millennium. Berkely: University of California Press, 1998.
  • Ramazani, Jahan; Richard Ellmann; and Robert O'Clair, eds. The Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Poetry, third edition. W. W. Norton & Company.  New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2003.
  • Tuma, Keith. Anthology of Twentieth-Century British and Irish Poetry. Oxford: OUP, 2001.
  • Wagner, Catherine, and Rebecca Wolff, editors. Not For Mothers Only: Contemporary Poems on Child-Getting and Child-Rearing. New York: Fence Books, 2007.

Summer Practice

Over the summer months, I encourage you to read and to write. Read widely! Think about what interests you (cosmology? sound art? jet airplanes? the cold war? feminism? diagrams? molecular biology?) and start to investigate this. Read articles. Read poetry. Read fiction. Read philosophy. Take notes. Take walks. Take time. Take a chance. Observe. Imagine. Envision. Envelope. Play with the sentence. Play with the line. Play with the paragraph. Write an essay. Start a blog. Take photographs. Get bored. Get excited. Float on the water and think about surface tension; generate a poetics that emulates it.

Bibliography for Course

The following offers a list of books that are relevant to the course.  You may like to have a look through a number of these ahead of next year.

  • Allen, Donald, ed,  The New Americn Poetry.  Grove Press, 1960.
  • ---. ed, The Poetics of the New American Poetry.  Grove Press, 1973.
  • Attridge, Derek. Poetic Rhythm: An Introduction. Cambridge: CUP, 1995.
  • Bachelard, Gaston.  On Poetic Imagination and Reverie.  (1971). Trans. Colette Gaudin.  Putnam, CN: Spring Publications, 2005.
  • Barfield, Owen. Poetic Diction: A Study in Meaning [1928]. Middletown,CT: Wesleyan U Press, 1973. 
  • Bartlett, Pyllis. Poems in Process. New York: OUP, 1951.
  • Benjamin, Walter.  Illuminations.  Ed. and with intro by Hannah Arendt.   Trans. Harry Zorn.  London:  Pimlico, 1999. 
  • Bernstein, Charles. Ed. The Politics of Poetic Form: Poetry and Public Policy.New York: Roof Books, 1990.
  • Brooke-Rose, Christine. A Grammar of Metaphor. London: Secker & Warburg,1958.
  • Cameron, Sharon.  Lyric Time: Dickinson and the Limits of Genre.  Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1979. 
  • Casterton, Julia. Creative Writing: A Practical Guide. London: Palgrave, 2005.
  • Carper, Thomas, and Derek Attridge, Meter and Meaning: Introduction to Rhythm in  Poetry.  London: Routledge, 2003.   
  • Casterton, Julia. Creative Writing: A Practical Guide. London: Palgrave, 2005.
  • Cuddon, J.A. A Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory. Oxford: Blackwell, 1991.
  • Curran, Stuart. Poetic Form and British Romanticism. New York: Oxford U Press, 1986.
  • Curtis, Tony. Ed. How Poets Work. Bridgend: Seren, 1996.
  • Davie, Donald. Purity of Diction in English Verse. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1952; 1967.
  • ---.  Energy: An Inquiry into the Syntax of English Poetry. London:  Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1955 
  • Kinzie, Mary. A Poet’s Guide To Poetry. Chicago: U of Chicago, 1999. 
  • Deutsche, Babette. Poetry Handbook: A Dictionary of Terms. New York: Grosset and Dunlap, 1957;1962 
  • Frank, Robert and Henry Sayre.  The Line in Postmodern Poetry.  Chicago: U of Illinois P, 1988. 
  • Fraser, G.S.. Metre, Rhyme and Free Verse.  London: Methuen, 1970.
  • Fussell, Paul. Poetic Meter and Poetic Form. New York: Random House, 1965.
  • Hall, Donald, ed. Claims for Poetry.  Ann Arbor: U of Michigan, 1982. 
  • Hardy, Barbara. The Advantage of Lyric: Essays on Feeling in Poetry.  London:Athlone, 1977.
  • Hartman, Charles O. Free Verse: An Essay on Prosody. Princeton: Princeton U Press, 1980.
  • Häublein, Ernst. The Stanza. London: Methuen, 1978.
  • Heaney, Seamus and Ted Hughes. The Rattle Bag. London: Faber, 1982.
  • Heidegger, Martin. Poetry, Language, Thought. New York: Harper & Row, 1976
  • Hobsbaum, Philip. Metre, Rhythm, and Verse Form. London: Routledge, 1996.
  • Hollander, John. Rhyme’s Reason: A Guide to English Verse. New Haven: Yale U Press, 1981. 
  • ---. The Figure of Echo: A Mode of Allusion in Milton and After. Berkeley: U of California Press, 1981.
  • ---. Vision and Resonance: Two Senses of Poetic Form. New Haven, Conn.: Yale U Press, 1985.
  • Holub, Miroslav The Dimension of the Present: And Other Essays, London, Faber and Faber, 1990 
  • Hobsbaum, Philip. Tradition and Experiment in English Poetry.  Basingstoke:  Macmillan, 1979.
  • Jarrell, Randall. Poetry and the Age New York: Vintage Books, 1955.
  • Johnson, W.R. The Idea of Lyric: Lyric Modes in Ancient and Modern Poetry.  Berkeley: University of California Press, 1982.
  • Ker, W.P.  Form and Style in Poetry.  London: Macmillan, 1966.
  • Kinzie, Mary. A Poet’s Guide To Poetry. Chicago: U of Chicago, 1999.
  • Lewis, C. Day. The Poetic Image.  London: Jonathan Cape, 1947. 
  • Lindley, David. Lyric.  London: Methuen, 1985.
  • MacLeish, Archibald. Poetry and Experience.  Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1960.
  • Marks, Emerson, R. Taming The Chaos: English Poetic Diction Since The Renaissance. Detroit: Wayne State U of P, 1998.
  • Nabokov, Vladimir. Notes on Prosody and Abram Grannibal. Princeton, NJ: Princeton U Press/Bollingen, 1964.
  • Messerli, Douglas, ed, From the Other Side of the Century: A New American Poetry 1960-1990.  Sun and Moon Press, 1994.
  • Nowottny, Winifred. The Language Poets Use.  London: Athlone, 1962; 1991
  • Olson, Charles. Selected Writings of Charles Olson.  Ed. Robert Creeley.  1950. New York: New Directions.  1966. p. 15-30.
  • Padgett, Ron. The Straight Line: Writings on Poetry and Poets. Ann Arbor, U of  Michigan, 2000.
  • Perloff, Marjorie. The Poetics of Inderminacy.  Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University  Press, 1981.
  • ---. Poetic License: Essays on Modernist and Postmodernist Lyric.  Evanston, Ill.: North-Western University Press, 1990.
  • Pinsky, Robert. The Situation of Poetry: Contemporary Poetry and Its Traditions. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton U  Press, 1977 
  • ---. The Sounds of Poetry: A Brief Guide.  New York: Farrar, Strauss and  Giroux, 1998..
  • Preminger, Alex, with Frank J. Warnke and O.B. Hardison, Jr., eds. Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics. Enlarged ed. Princeton: Princeton U Press, 1965; 1974.
  • Riley, Denise.  Lyric Selves: Identification, Solidarity, Irony.  Stanford: Stanford UP, 2000. 
  • ---. Poets On Writing: Britain 1970-1991. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1992.
  • Shapcott Jo and Matthew Sweeney. Emergency Kit: Poems for Strange Times. London: Faber and Faber, 1996.
  • Shapiro, Karl, and Robert Beum. A Prosody Handbook. New York: Harper & Row, 1965.
  • Silliman, Ron. The New Sentence.  New York: Roof Books, 1977. 
  • Sloan, Mary Margaret.  Moving Borders: Three Decades of Innovative Writing by Women.  New Jersey: Talisman House Publishers, 1988. 
  •  Spahr, Juliana and Claudia Rankin. Where Lyric Meets Language. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan U Press, 2002.
  • Strachan, John and Richard Terry.  Poetry: Elements of Literature. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2000.
  • Stein, Gertrude. How To Write. New York: Dover, 1975. 
  • Stewart, Susan. Poetry and the Fate of the Senses, Chicago: U of Chicago Press, 2002.
  • Steiner, George. Language and Silence: Essays 1958-1966.  Penguin Books, 1969. 
  • Turco, Lewis. The New Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics. Hanover: U Press of New England, 1986.
  • Wimsatt, W.K. The Verbal Icon: Studies in the Meaning of Poetry. Lexington: U of Kentucky Press, 1967. 




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