ENGL 343
Whitman and Dickinson in Context Fall 2009
Division I Writing Skills
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

In this seminar we will read closely the works of two of the most influential and fascinating poets in the U.S., Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson. In addition to studying in depth their poems and other writings–in Whitman’s case, his essays; in Dickinson’s, her letters–we will delve into the major critical debates surrounding their work, both individually and when compared to one another. For example, Whitman is often viewed as perhaps the most public nineteenth-century American poet, whereas Dickinson is regarded as perhaps the most “private.” We will interrogate this assumption, exploring how each poet represents publicity and privacy in his/her work, as well as their efforts to “perform” and/or reform the American self. Finally, we will explore Whitman’s and Dickinson’s literary influence on modern and contemporary American poetry.
The Class: Format: discussion
Limit: 19
Expected: 19
Class#: 1695
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: evaluation will be based on participation in seminar and on written work, including several short papers and one final essay (10 to 12 pages)
Prerequisites: a 100-level English course
Enrollment Preferences: English majors
Distributions: Division I Writing Skills
Attributes: AMST Arts in Context Electives

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