Syllabus for English 203: Modern Poetry (Altieri) Wheeler
427: hrs Tu 1:15-3:15
Week 1. Aug 27: Introduction. My web site is ..,
where I hope to post the
lectures. You can also find the site through the UCB
29. Poems by Arnold and Tennyson on handout, Victorian Poems in reader,
essays by T.S Eliot, also in reader. Reader is at Copy Central on Bancroft just east of Telegraph.
Week 2. Sept
3: T.S Eliots first volume of poetry Prufrock And Other
Observations, especially Prufrock, Preludes, and Rhapsody
on Windy Night. Also whispers of immortality and Sweeny Among
nightingales in next volume..
Wasteland, with some remarks on sacramentalism in Four Quartets.
Week 3. Sept
10: Poetry and Poetics
of Ezra Pound. Selections
from his prose and the early poems in the reader.
12. The work of the senses in cantos 1-5, 7-to
be handed out. There is
an indispensable Companion to the Cantos edited by Carroll Terrell.
Week 4. Sept
17: What Cezanne does
to Impressionismtexts by painters in reader and look at
images from Monet, Pisarro, and Cezanne, either in books or on Images.com. There should also be the images I want to discuss on my
website, but not good reproductions.
19. Interpretations of Sensation in selected images
by Braque, Picasso, Malevich and Mondrian.
Week 5: Sept
24: Wallace Stevens, the first 20 pages of Harmonium. What is distinctive about this opening?
26: The rest of Harmonium.
Week 6: Oct 1: William
Carlos Williams: Collected Poems, vol 1: pp. 1-4,11,15, 21, 25-6,42-9,63-86.
Week 7: Oct
8: Williams, all of Spring and All in
10: Willams, all of Descent of Winter in CP plus pp. 377-81,
Week 8: Oct
15: Elizabeth Bishop, Complete Poems: pp.
3, 8, 14, 22-8, 31-2, 35, 42-46, 55-75
17: Bishop: pp. 89-104, 123-38, 159-194.
Week 9: Oct
22: Theory weekhow might the context these readings provide
change our discourse about the poems? For this class Bergson and Nietzsche in reader.
24: Adorno in reader.
Week 10: Oct
29: Yeats and the Nature
of Voice. CP: first four poems, and who goes with Fergus
from The Rose, all of Wind Among the Reeds, and
all of Green Helmet. Essay
on Symbolism in reader. And
there is a commentary by Norman Jeffares that annotates all the
31. All of Responsibilities, first four poems of Wild Swans,
Upon a Dying lady, Ego Dominus Tuus, Easter 1916, Second
Coming and Prayer for Daughter.
Week 11: Nov
5: Yeats: First four poems of Tower, Leda
and Swan, first four and last six poems of Winding Stair.
7: All of Words for Music Perhaps and Supernatural Songs.
Also essays by Yeats in reader.
Week 12: Nov 12: Yeats, Last Poems down to To Dorothy Wellesley,
then from Those Images to end.
14: Auden, from Collected Poems. Assignments to be made later
Week 13: Nov 19: Auden.
Week 14: Nov 26: Wallace Stevens, from Collected Poems: 128-37, 146, 201-14, 227, 236-46, 273-83.
Week 15: Dec. 3: Stevens: Notes Toward Supreme Fiction and Ordinary
Evening in New Haven. Also
essay from Necessary Angel in reader.
5: All of The Rock in CP. Wittgenstein
Assignments 1. Regular attendance is required.
There will be a term essay of about 20 pages on any of
the materials covered in the course. I would prefer that you check with me before you begin
this project. You can if you want write three intense five
page papers as we go, but this too should be negotiated with me.
There will be one oral presentation in the classeither on
how voice works in Auden or on how sensation is put to work in
a painting by one of the figures mentioned above. If you choose the painting please talk to me before proceeding.