English 292: Survey of Poetry

Meets TR 1:00 - 2:22 am in Vaughan Lit 102

John Rickard
Office: Carnegie 202

Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 2:30 - 4:00 pm
, and by appointment
E-mail address: rickard@bucknell.edu

WWW Home page: http://www.facstaff.bucknell.edu/rickard





Our textbook should be available in the Bucknell Bookstore, amazon.com; if you have any problems obtaining it, please let me know. YOU SHOULD ALSO PURCHASE A GOOD, HARDBACK DICTIONARY, IF YOU DON'T OWN ONE ALREADY.

The Norton Anthology of Poetry, Fourth Edition (1996; ISBN: 0-393-96820-0)


This is a provisional syllabus; changes will be discussed and announced in class. The readings specified below will sometimes be supplemented by handouts I will give you to read for the next class or by reserve readings. You are responsible for learning of and responding to syllabus changes during the semester. I will expect you to have the works read by the first day they are listed on the syllabus.

Other materials for this course are available on the internet at: http://www.facstaff.bucknell.edu/rickard/ENGL292.html.


August 26

What is Poetry?

August 31

Foundational Myths; The Mechanics of Verse
READ: NA, lxi - lxxi

September 2

The Mechanics of Verse, Continued
READ: NA, lxxi - lxxx

September 7

Medieval English Poetry -- Anglo-Saxon Verse
READ: NA, 1-16

September 9
Medieval English Poetry -- 1066 and After -- Chaucer
READ: NA, 17-20 ("The General Prologue," lines 1-162) and 52-54 (Excerpt from Troilus and Criseide and Lyrics and Occasional Verse)
September 14

The Sonnet
READ: NA, 113-114 (Wyatt, "Whoso List to Hunt"); 169-170 (Spenser, Sonnet 75); 192-193 (Sidney, Astrophil and Stella, Sonnet 1); 314-315 (Wroth, Sonnets 1 and 2)
ALSO, Shakespeare, NA
235-240 (especially sonnets 18, 29, 30, 55, 116, 129, and 130)

September 16
Renaissance Women's Poetry
READ: NA 128-132 (Askew and Queen Elizabeth I); 255-258 (Lanyer, "From 'Salve Deus Rex Judaeorum"); and 497-501 and 503-504 (Aphra Behn, "Song," "The Disappointment," "To the Fair Clarinda," and "A Thousand Martyrs")

AND: Virginia Woolf, "Shakespeare's Sister" (E-Res)
September 21

A Renaissance Miscellany
READ: Marlowe, NA 233-234 ("The Passionate Shepherd"), Jonson, 291-292 ("On My First Daughter" and "On My First Son"), and Donne, 265-267 ("The Sun Rising" and "The Canonization") and 279-280 ("The Flea" and "The Relic")

September 23
John Donne and George Herbert
READ: NA 281-282 ("Elegy XIX"), and 287-289 (Holy Sonnets 5, 10, and 14); and George Herbert, 330-331 ("Easter Wings"), 333-334 ("Prayer"), and 340-341 ("The Collar")
September 28

John Milton
READ: NA 354-358 ("Lycidas"), 378 ("When I Consider How My Light is Spent") and 380-381 (Opening of Paradise Lost)

September 30

READ: NA 435-436 (Marvell, "To His Coy Mistress"), 522-523 (Finch, "The Introduction"), 539-543 (Pope, lines 200-365 of "Essay on Criticism, Part II"), and 659-662 (Wheatley)

Paper 1 Due

October 5

William Blake
READ: NA, 671-682 (Blake, from "Songs of Innocence," "The Book of Thel," and "Songs of Experience")

October 7

Wordsworth and Coleridge
READ: NA, 699-703 ("Tintern Abbey") and 741-742 ("Kubla Khan")

October 12

Byron and Shelley
READ: NA, 778-785 ("Don Juan," Canto I, stanzas 49-82), 799 ("Ozymandias"), 800 -801("England in 1819"), and 805-807 ("To a Skylark")

October 14

John Keats
READ: NA, 832 ("When I Have Fears"), 842-843 ("La Belle Dame sans Merci"), 845-847 ("Ode to a Nightingale"), and 848-849 ("Ode on a Grecian Urn")

October 19

Walt Whitman
READ: NA, 957-958 (Spirituals, "Go Down Moses"), 961-965 (from Song of Myself), 969, bottom ("When I Heard the Learned Astronomer"), and 978-984 ("When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd")

October 21
October 26
October 28

Emily Dickinson
READ: NA, 1010-1025

SPECIAL EVENT IN EVENING: Professor Weldon Thornton (University of North Carolina) lectures on James Joyce, Smith Library, Vaughan Lit, 7:30 pm

November 2

Tennyson, Browning, and Arnold
READ: NA, 899 and 902-903 (Tennyson, from In Memoriam, stanzas 1, 55, and 56), 911-912 (Browning, "My Last Duchess"), and 999-1000 (Arnold, "Dover Beach")

November 4
Modern Miscellany
READ: NA, 1049 and 1051 (Hardy, "Hap" and "Drummer Hodge"), 1062-1063 (Hopkins, "God's Grandeur" and "The Windhover"), 1135-1136 (Frost, "Design" and "The Silken Tent"; and
1276-1277 (Owen, "Dulce et Decorum Est")
November 9
November 11

W. B. Yeats
READ: NA, 1087-1088 ("The Wild Swans at Coole" and "An Irish Airman Foresees His Death") 1091 ("The Second Coming"), 1094 ("Sailing to Byzantium"), 1095 ("Leda and the Swan"), 1096-1097 ("Among School Children") and 1099 ("Crazy Jane Talks with the Bishop")

November 16

Modern Miscellany
READ: NA, 1151-1154 (Stevens, "Sunday Morning"); 1166-1167 (Williams, "The Red Wheelbarrow" and "This is Just to Say"); 1218-1219 (Moore, "Poetry"); 1230-1233 (Eliot, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"); 1273 (Millay, "I, Being Born a Woman"); 1331 (Smith, "Not Waving But Drowning"), 1284 (cummings, "since feeling is first")

SPECIAL EVENT--Salman Rushdie speaks in Weis Center
November 18

W.H Auden and Elizabeth Bishop
READ: NA, 1367-1368 (Auden, "Musée des Beaux Arts" and "In Memory of W.B. Yeats") and 1409-1411 (Bishop, "The Fish"); 1412-1414 ("Sestina" and "In the Waiting Room"); and 1419-1420 ("One Art")

Paper 2 Due

November 23

Sterling Brown and Langston Hughes
READ: NA, 1317-1320 (Brown, all) and 1320-1325 (Hughes, all)

November 25
November 30
Modern African American Miscellany
READ: NA, 1118 (Dunbar, "We Wear the Mask"); 1479-1483 (Brooks, read all); 1335-1337 (Cullen, read all); 1827-1829(Komunyakaa) and "Facing It" (handout); and 1861-1862 (Dove, "The Bistro Styx")
December 2

Dylan Thomas and Robert Lowell
READ: NA, 1460 (Thomas, "The Force that Through the Green Fuse"), 1463 ("A Refusal to Mourn . . "), 1464-1466 ("Fern Hill" and "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night"), and 1496-1497 (Lowell, "For the Union Dead")

December 7
Philip Larkin, Sylvia Plath, and Seamus Heaney
READ: NA, 1548-1550 (Larkin, "Sad Steps" and "Aubade"); and 1729-1730 (Plath, "Morning Song"); 1732-1737 ("Daddy," "Ariel," and "Lady Lazarus")
; 1788-1791 (Heaney, "Digging," "The Forge," and "Punishment") and "Mid-Term Break" (Hand out)

Evaluations and discussion of course

Date TBA

Final Examination

Papers: (1) two shorter papers (approximately 5-7 and 7-10 pages), explicating, analyzing, and/or discussing one or more works on our syllabus; (2) one "focus poem project" that scans and explicates a poem, including a recital (from memory) to the class and an oral presentation; and (3) mid-term and final essay examinations. I will also assign periodic informal oral presentations on authors, terms, and/or historical topics that will count as part of the participation grade.


Paper 1 (Due September 30) -- 15%

Paper 2 (Due November 18) -- 20%

Mid-term Exam (October 21) -- 15%

Focus Poem Project (Schedule to be determined) -- 15% (Grade based on written and oral components)

Final Examination (TBA) -- 25%

Class participation and informal oral presentations -- 10%

Class participation is expected and is an important part of your grade. Everyone must participate for a class such as this to work well; excessive absences will lower your grade in this course. When you miss a class, you must contact me or another student to find out what you missed and what assignments might be due the next week. If you miss more than five classes, you will be required to write an additional essay or receive an automatic grade of F for the course.

LATE PAPERS: I will at times allow students an extra day to work on finishing a late paper, but only if you have an acceptable reason for turning the essay in late and only if you ask me for an extension before the paper is due. Students who get their essays in on time justifiably consider it unfair for a professor to allow other students extra time to finish assignments; therefore, unexcused late papers will go down one letter grade for every day they are late. Given the need to stick to our schedule for the semester, I cannot allow extensions on the focus poem project.

FINALLY . . . As noted above, my office is Carnegie Building 202. I am available during my normally-scheduled office hours to meet with you. If you need to speak with me outside of my scheduled office hours, I am very willing to make an appointment. You can e-mail me (rickard@bucknell.edu) or call me at 577-1424. You can sometimes also find me on AOL Instant Messenger at BestiaTrionfante.  If you have an important message or need to speak with me urgently, please call me at home at 523-7784.