Graduate Poetry Workshop                                                  
Unending Design: Postmodern Poetic Form                                
WRIT 5001, Fall 2011
Instructor: Amy England                                                                                                               
In Joseph Conte’s Unending Design: The Forms of Postmodern Poetry, he locates the innovations of 20th century poets in their engagements with serial and procedural poetic methods, a thesis that allows examination of many postmodern movements and important poets. We will use the poets Conte discusses as source texts for our own formal experiments, and in our own discussions about open versus closed forms and the use of chance in composition.

We will alternate between readings and workshops. As we go, we will accumulate a list of possible forms and generative methods in response to the readings for you to use in your work. The goal is to give you the freedom of many choices but to have the workshop material still engaged in the readings in some way; this makes the workshop discussions more focused and, I think, more helpful.

To Pass the Class: Turn in the six workshop assignments in a timely manner, discuss the readings knowledgeably, read and comment on each other’s work with engagement and respect, and do not to miss more than two classes.  
Required Books:
Robert Creeley: Collected Poems
Susan Howe: Europe of Trusts
Lorinne Niedecker: The Granite Pail
George Oppen: New Collected Poems
Claudia Rankine: Don’t Let Me Be Lonely
Jack Spicer: My Vocabulary Did This to Me
Louis Zukofsky: Anew

Wk. I, Sept. 2nd : Introduction: the post-modern sestina; Denise Levertov and Robert Duncan

Wk. II, Sept. 9th : Creeley, Collected Poems, especially "Pieces", "In London", "Thirty Things".      
Add-drop period ends Sept. 13th

Wk. III, Sept. 16th: workshop

Wk. IV, Sept. 23rd: Spicer, My Vocabulary Did This to Me, especially "Language"

Wk. V, Sept. 30th: workshop

Wk. VI, Oct. 7th : Rankine, Don’t Let Me Be Lonely

Wk. VII,Oct. 14th: No class. Oct. 16th: Claudia Rankine reading at Northwestern;

Oct. 17th Claudia Rankine, master class 9-12

Wk. VIII, Oct. 21st: Oppen: New Collected Poems, especially "Discrete Series"

Wk. IX, Oct. 28th: workshop                                                       Withdrawal period ends Nov. 1st

Wk. X, Nov. 4th : Louis Zukofsky: Anew, especially "Anew", "Barely and Widely", and "Catullus"

Wk. XI, Nov. 11th : workshop

Wk. XII, Nov. 18th: Lorine Niedecker, The Granite Pail

THANKSGIVING BREAK: November 24th-25th

Wk. XIII, Dec. 2nd: workshop

Wk. XIV, Dec. 9th: CRITIQUE WEEK; make-up class: Howe, The Europe of Trusts

Wk. XV, Dec. 16th: workshop

© 2014 Amy England, rights reserved