One reason I like teaching “Literary Methodologies” is that it allows me to go back to material that I maybe haven’t thought about for a while . . . or perhaps at least since the last time I taught this course.
As I primarily read and write about contemporary American fiction, I don’t often get the chance or take the time to think much about sonnets or poetry more broadly or any literature written before 1865. But, whenever I do, well . . . I’m charged by the experience: I should think and write more about poetry.
Our thinking about sonnets and external form in the last class period got me surfing for more information. I wanted to know if there were other standard sonnet forms (besides the English and the Italian) and what folks were doing with sonnets.
Here’s some resources where I found the answers to these and other questions:
“Basic Sonnet Forms”: http://www.sonnets.org/basicforms.htm
“The Sonnet”: http://www.writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/88/sonnet.html
Other things on Dr. J’s mind . . .
This week you all have the challenge of writing your OED paper and creating a blog.
I imagine that these are new experiences for most of you . . . and when things are new it is not unusual to feel frustrated and confused. As I mentioned in class, I purposely selected a poem for your OED paper that not many (if any!) people have written about and you probably have never read before. What’s a literary critic to do with this poem that seems to use language so differently?
Well, starting with the key words as a tool to unlock the meaning is a start. And, new poems remind us to slow down in our reading. Interpretation is not to be rushed into. One starting point might be to consider: Is this a serious poem? Funny? Witty? What insight do its words and their OED meanings give you in this regard?
I’m looking forward to reading the efforts this weekend.