ENGL 229 Fall 2012 Elegies (W)

This tutorial--intended primarily for sophomores--explores elegies as a literary genre. In their most familiar form, elegies honor and memorialize the dead. More broadly conceived, the genre includes works lamenting other kinds of loss as well: the loss of a lover, place, country, or cherished version of one's past. We'll consider the special challenges and opportunities of the elegiac voice: how it manages to give public expression to private grief; negotiates problems of tone and perspective; worries about and celebrates the capacity of language to generate hope and consolation; and seeks a kind of solace in the literary effort to evoke, preserve, or rewrite a lost life or an absent past. This course focuses primarily on poetry, English and American, across a broad historical range. We'll first read poems from 1600-1900--including works by Jonson, Milton, Donne, Dryden, Gray, Shelley, Tennyson, and Whitman, and then turn to some of the twentieth-century's great poetic elegists--Owen, Yeats, Auden, Lowell, and Heaney. Finally, we'll consider how the elegiac voice works in fiction, especially in stories by Joyce ("The Dead") and Nabokov ("Spring in Fialta").
Class Format: tutorial
Requirements/Evaluation: students will meet with the instructor in pairs for an hour each week; they will write a 5- to 6-page paper every other week (five in all), and comment on their partners' papers in alternate weeks
Additional Info: not available for the Gaudino or Pass/Fail options
Additional Info2: emphasis will be placed on developing skills not only in reading and interpretation, but also in constructing critical arguments and responding to them in written and oral critiques
Prerequisites: a 100-level English course, or a score of 5 on the AP Exam in English Literature or a 6 or 7 on the International Baccalaureate
Enrollment Preference: sophomores; not open to first-year students
Department Notes:
Material and Lab Fees:
Distribution Notes:
Divisional Attributes: Division I, Writing Intensive
Other Attributes: ENGL Literary Histories B
Enrollment Limit: 10
Expected Enrollment: 10
Class Number: 1591
ENGL229-T1(F) TUT Elegies (W) Division 1: Languages and the ArtsWriting Intensive Stephen Fix
TBA 1591
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