Sep 10th 2014

AmPoX.1x: Poetry in America: The Poetry of Early New England (edX)

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The first module of a course surveying 400 years of poetry in America, from the Puritans to the avant-garde poets of this new century.

The Poetry of Early New England introduces students to the most important poets of the 17th century, including Anne Bradstreet, Michael Wigglesworth and Edward Taylor. Texts range from theological verse dramas to intimate love poems, from meditations on nature, family and death to reflections on the civic and communal hopes of the New England migrants. Students will be exposed to relevant poetic forms and traditions, to rare manuscript and printed materials, and they will have opportunities to practice and refine the way they read, and write about, poems. Course materials include video lectures, roundtable and online discussions--but also interactive exercises and interpretive expeditions to key New England sites.

Poetry in America surveys nearly 400 years of poetry in America. Treating individual figures (Poe, Whitman, Dickinson, Frost, Williams, Hughes), major poetic movements (Firesides, Modernist, New York, Confessional, L-A-N-G-U-A-G-E) and probing the many uses of poetry across changing times, the course provides a historical time line for the American poetic tradition while also giving students tools to approach any poetic tradition. Who, and what, are poems for? For poets? Readers? To give vent to the soul? To paint or sculpt with words? Alter consciousness? Raise cultural tone? Students will read, engage with, write about and also recite and record American poems.

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