Instructor: Machado
TR 12:30 PM – 1:50 PM

January 2021: former National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman served as the youngest Inaugural Poet in US history. September 2021: poet Cathy Park Hong is featured on the cover of TIME magazine. A 2018 survey by the NEA found that poetry readership has increased dramatically across a range of demographics. This course explores the roots and ramifications of this thrilling cultural phenomenon by studying a range of established and up-and-coming US poets from the 1950s to the present day.

Poets are always experimenting, always trying to make things new. Equally, they draw on deep, ancestral forces; on history and science and politics; and on “the tradition,” i.e., the technical wizardry of poets who came before them: everything from Shakespeare and Gilgamesh to the modernists and post-modernists. Each poet’s work will be studied in the context of its socio-political moment as well as in relation to past and current literary movements. An abbreviated catalog of the latter: (post-)Confessionalism, the New York School, L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poetry, the Black Arts Movement, ecopoetics, and performance poetry.

(Painting by Etel Adnan)