Week 5: Imagism

Monday, March 12

In class:


Wednesday, March 14

In class:

Friday, March 16

In class: Discuss poetry and meaning critical vocabulary and Amy Lowell


Week 4: Early Modernists

Monday, March 5

In Class:


Wednesday, March 7

In class: discuss A.E. Housman and E.A. Robinson’s poetry.


Friday, March 9

In class: discuss Thomas Hardy’s poetry.


Week 3: American Innovators

Monday, February 26

Wednesday, February 21

Friday, February 23

Week 16: Second Generation Modernism

Monday, May 2

  • Read the chapter on Negritude in Poems for the Millenium (pgs 559-584).
  • Readings for today.
  • Essay #2 due today (but read our Slack channel).
  • Bonus opportunity: attend the I ♥︎ E-Poetry Café (tonight after class) and write a 1-paragraph reaction in our Slack.


Wednesday, May 4

Essay #2: Modernist Poetics


The goal of this assignment is to formulate a Modernist poet’s poetics and demonstrate it through the analysis of several representative works.


In order for you to successfully write this essay I suggest the following steps:

  1. Select one of the following poets listed here, and in the course syllabus.
  2. Research the poet, life, poetry, affiliations with poets and poetic movements, essays or manifestos written by the poet, and articles written about the poet’s work.
  3. Formulate what you think his/her poetics is all about. This is your thesis statement.
  4. Choose 1 long poem or 2-3 short poems by that poet and analyze and interpret it/them in light of those poetics.
  5. Write your essay. Proving your thesis, supporting it with selected analysis of the poems.


The final paper should be about 1000 words long (4 pages) in MLA format (typed, double-spaced, with 1” margins, and a 12-point legible font). Any use of sources must be documented in impeccable MLA format—parenthetical citation (author’s last name & page number) and works cited page.

A printed copy of this essay is due in class on Monday, May 2.


Your essay will be evaluated in the following areas, with areas 1-3 carrying most of the weight of the grade:

  1. Assignment (fulfilling requirements, quality of thesis, and depth of analysis),
  2. Organization (clarity of thesis, thorough paragraphing, overall organization),
  3. Development (relevance of claims, adequacy of support, and textual evidence),
  4. Sentence Structure, Word Choice, and Grammar (weaknesses will be identified in these areas, but they will not affect grade significantly unless they get in the way of understanding the essay).

An essay that satisfies all the requirements of the assignment with a clear sense of organization and adequate development earns a “C” in this class. An essay that achieves the goals at an above average level of proficiency, with only minor problems in one or two areas earns a “B.” The “A” is reserved for nearly flawless, elegant essays that excel in all the criteria described above. Essays that do not fulfill the minimum requirements for the assignment earn a “D.” Essays that are not turned in or contain plagiarism earn an “F.”

Attempts to cheat by appropriating someone else’s essay and passing it as your own will result in an “F” in the course.

Week 13: #WasteLandMemes and More

Monday, April 11

Activity: Annotating The Waste Land with #WasteLandMemes

  •  Preparation:
    • Visit this page: The Waste Land.
    • Create Hypothes.is account and login (on that page).
  • Get the image URL:
    • Login to your Twitter account.
    • Open the Tweet in which you shared your meme.
    • Right click (ctrl-click on a Mac) on the image of your meme and select “copy image location”
  • Annotate The Waste Land with your meme:
    • Highlight the text you’re referencing in The Waste Land and select “annotate.”
    • In the annotation, select “insert picture” and paste the URL of your shared image in the highlighted text.
    • Write a brief explanation of what you were attempting to say with your meme.
    • Add the #WasteLandMemes hashtag to your annotation.
    • Publish your annotation.

Wednesday, April 13


Friday, April 15

Class meets online through this assignment.

Assignment, Part 1

  • Choose one poem not discussed in class from the Poetry Foundation listing of Yeats’ poems,
  • Research its connection to Yeats’ poetics, themes, symbolism, and
  • Write a 250 word analysis of the poem
  • Post it in our Slack group before 4:30 pm on Friday.

Assignment, Part 2

  • Read 2 of your classmate’s postings, read the poem they’re analyzing, and reply to them (@mention the author in your response) briefly (50 words) but substantively.
  • This response must be posted on Slack before 4:30 pm on Monday.


Week 12: Into the Waste Land

Monday, April 4

  • Finish discussion of “The Preludes”
  • Introduction to The Waste Land
  • Assign groups to focus discussions of The Waste Land.
  • If you weren’t assigned a section, you’re responsible for all sections of the poem.

Wednesday, April 6

  • Water outage: class cancelled.

Waste Land Memes Assignment

  • Create two image macro memes with the following parameters:
    • The text must be a brief, direct quote from your assigned section of The Waste Land.
    • The image must be a representation of the image, text, objective correlative referenced in that quote.
    • The goal of these two memes is to offer insight on that portion of the poem.
  • Create one meme with the following parameters:
    • The text must quote, paraphrase, touch on, or riff on an excerpt from your assigned section of The Waste Land.
    • The image can be anything you want, as long as it isn’t sexist, racist, ableist, or otherwise offensive. You can even insert text from the wasteland on an established image macro, or other kind of meme (such as a GIF, comic, or other popular format).
    • The goal of this meme is to make a humorous comment on that portion of the poem.
  • Publish your memes before class on Monday, April 11.
    • Create/login to your Twitter account.
    • Make your image no larger than 512 pixels high.
    • Post each meme image on Twitter with the quote and using the following hashtags: #WasteLandMemes #NPM16 #NationalPoetryMonth
  • Be prepared to discuss your memes– and The Waste Land— in class on Monday.