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Groundbreaking Poets & Traditional Forms

ENGL 262.401
also offered as: COML 274
TR 3-4:30pm

Learn about sonnets, sestinas, villanelles, and other standards of the established canon as they are revitalized by the most celebrated poets working today. We'll study Terrance Hayes' villanelles about Harper's Ferry, Natasha Trethewey's ghazals about mixed-race identity, Gwendolyn Brooks' rime royal about Chicago's South Side, sonnets about burned churches by Tyehimba Jess, Patricia Smith's sestinas about Hurricane Katrina, and other examples of how history is expanding through voices of contemporary poets including Natalie Diaz, Rita Dove, Reginald Dwayne Betts, Aracelis Girmay, Fatimah Asghar, and Hai-Dang Phan.
The class will be split between discussion and workshop, so students can practice the same forms we will study. Assignments will include short critical essays and more playful exercises on how to follow--and break--the rules of English meter and form.


fulfills requirements
Elective Seminar of the Standard Major
Sector 1: Theory and Poetics of the Standard Major
Sector 2: Difference and Diaspora of the Standard Major
Sector 6: 20th Century Literature of the Standard Major