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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : English Literature

Undergraduate Course: Modern Poetry: 1922-1927 (ENLI10405)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course examines key publications from the golden age of High Modernist poetry. We will look at individual collections by key British and American poets of the time. Though scanning only five years, from 1922 to 1927, the course includes some of the most renowned and influential poets and poetry books of the twentieth century. In the shadow of the catastrophic First World War, all the poets were seeking an apt response to the combustible context of modernity, and the course will explore the differing ways in which the poets challenged conventional ideas of poetry in an attempt to meet the changes of the modern world. We will focus on close readings and individual poems, looking at the differing formal and stylistic innovations of each poet, examining how they represented intimations of chaos on the one hand, but also ideas of order and tradition on the other. We will explore key poetic debates of the era: the nature of the poetic image; free verse; authorial ¿impersonality¿ and the poem¿s relationship with the reader; themes of gender and sexuality; of history and temporality; of class, cultural inequality and diversity; and of the convulsive politics of the time.
Course description Students will be expected to devote considerable individual preparation time to the close reading and re-reading of set poems each week, while also considering each week's set text as a whole. In addition, they will be expected to consult a range of supplementary and secondary material, including extracts from the poets' own critical writings. A further aim of the course is to familiarise students with the key interpretive debates inspired by modern poetry, which also provide a valuable overview of the history of twentieth-century and contemporary poetry criticism. Students will be guided towards a range of secondary material that best represents these critical debates.
The structure of reading and analysis on the course is broadly comparative: students will be asked to explore the similarities and differences between the key poems and set texts, and examine the various types of analysis made possible by the critical modes of reading to which they are introduced. The guided examination of the similarities and differences between the range of texts and approaches studied will help students to develop the analytical skills and knowledge that will be assessed in their essays.
The course is assessed by two essays, one to be completed by Week 9 of the course and one to be written during the exam period, and an assessment of students' participation in class and their autonomous learning groups. Detailed written feedback will be provided on each element of assessment.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: ( Literary Studies 1A (ENLI08020) AND Literary Studies 1B (ENLI08021) OR English Literature 1 (ENLI08001) OR Scottish Literature 1 (ENLI08016)) AND ( Literary Studies 2A: English Literature in the World, 1380-1788 (ENLI08024) AND Literary Studies 2B: English Literature in the World, post-1789 (ENLI08025) OR Scottish Literature 2A (ENLI08022) AND Scottish Literature 2B (ENLI08023) OR English Literature 2 (ENLI08003) AND Scottish Literature 2 (ENLI08004))
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 2000 word coursework essay (30%) submitted mid-semester;
plus 3000 word final essay submitted during exam period (70%).
Feedback Detailed written feedback will be provided on each element of assessment, and further oral follow up feedback from the tutor will be available from anybody who would like it.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. By the end of the course students should be able to demonstrate a detailed knowledge of key texts of modern poetry.
  2. Students should also be able to demonstrate understanding of the major critical debates produced by modern poetry.
  3. Students should be able to demonstrate understanding of the cultural context of modern poetry.
  4. Students should be able to undertake independent critical analysis of modern poetry.
  5. Students should be able to orally present the results of research undertaken individually and as part of a small group, respond judiciously to such research undertaken by others, and critically evaluate the importance of such material for an understanding of the chief themes of the course.
Reading List
T. S. Eliot. The Wasteland (1922).
Wallace Stevens. Harmonium (1923).
William Carlos Williams. Spring and All (1923).
D. H. Lawrence. Birds, Beasts and Flowers (1923).
Mina Loy. Lunar Baedeker (1923).
H. D. Heliodora (1924)
Marianne Moore. Observations (1924).
Ezra Pound. A Draft of XVI Cantos (1925).
Langston Hughes. Fine Clothes to the Jew (1927).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills As an outcome of having studied this course, students will benefit from having developed a range of personal and professional skills commensurate with the range of SCQF Level 10 characteristics:

Knowledge and understanding: students will have had the opportunity to demonstrate their critical understanding of a range of the principal theories and concepts of literary analysis in relation to their reading and discussion of the course material;

Applied Knowledge, Skills and Understanding: in their work for class discussion, presentations and formal assessment tasks, students will have been able to practice the application of these theories and concepts in their construction of arguments about the course material;

Generic Cognitive Skills: in completing assessed essays and class presentations, students will have practiced identifying, defining, conceptualising and analysing complex problems and issues germane to the discipline;

Communication: through participating in these tasks students will also have demonstrated the ability to communicate ideas and information about specialised topics in the discipline to an informed audience of their peers and subject specialists;

Autonomy and Working with Others: students will also have shown the capacity to work autonomously and in small groups on designated tasks, develop new thinking with their peers, and take responsibility for the reporting, analysis and defence of these ideas to a larger group.
KeywordsPoetry,Modernism,Modern Poetics
Course organiserDr Alan Gillis
Tel: (0131 6)50 3050
Course secretaryMs June Cahongo
Tel: (0131 6)50 3620
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