The Art of Poetry Assignments
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The Art of Poetry Assignments
Eng 272G, The Art of Poetry
Paper #2, Due Friday, 3/30
Sequence of Assignments: paper topic approval must be submitted on the appropriate discussion forum of Blackboard by Friday, 3/9, a presentation of your paper topic and the contents of your first draft will take place over the course of the next 2 weeks after spring break (3/19, 3/21, 3/23, 3/26, and 3/28) and the final draft is due by midnight on Friday, 3/30.
Description: For this paper (and presentation), you’ll be analyzing a poem of your choice alongside its context, which you will research using at least 1 outside scholarly source. The poem will be chosen from the archives of Poets.Org and Poetryfoundation.Org, and the definition of “context” is flexible.
- 5-6 FULL pages, following standard essay and MLA format (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, no extra spaces between paragraphs, name, date, title, in-text citations, works cited page), that must incorporate at least 1 outside scholarly source.
- Paper should include a main idea (thesis) which is elaborated on in the following paragraphs. Paper should be written in an academic voice, avoiding personal pronouns and differentiating between the poet and the speaker of the poem. For example: “I interpreted this image as…” would translate to “The reader might interpret this image as…” and instead of “Brigit Pageen Kelly really likes goats,” you might say “the speaker of B.P.K.’s poem really likes goats.”
What can be defined as the “context” of a poem?
- Author biography, for example: Biographies are often discussed alongside the poetry of Sylvia Plath and Emily Dickinson, a poet’s cultural origins might impact their work in many ways, such as the work of Juan Felipe Herrera (look him up!).
- Poetic/literary movement associated with the poem, for example: the beat movement, the language poets, modernism, post-modernism, imagist, slam-poetry/spoken word, confessional, new-formalist, formalist, etc. (Hint: every poem has a movement, or two or three.)
- Time-period/historical context of the poem, for example: Shakespeare has a whole different ring to it today than it did in its time period, and Ocean Vuong’s poem about the fall of Saigon suggests a dialogue with a very specific historical moment. Poetry of war, or poetry about a specific cultural or historical event, is specifically well-suited for this kind of historical research.
Poetic Analysis: Remember to include any of the elements of poetry we have discussed thus far in the course that are relevant to your discussion. The important thing here is not vocabulary, but that you can describe how each poem is working and how it engages in a dialogue with its context. Go through each poem using the “How to Read Poetry” guide or the “Workshop Template” and use specific lines (NOT whole stanzas) in order to illustrate your points.
Research and inclusion of secondary source: Use Healey Library’s poetry research page to help you search for documents (http://umb.libguides.com/poetry). On the left-hand side, there’s a “find articles” tab that will have a list of databases where you can access full text of scholarly articles. For a few sources, you might need a library barcode to access them, which you can ask for at the Healey Library info desk (only takes a few seconds).
- Presentations should be between 3 and 5 minutes long. You may work from notes.
- The presentation should cover the major points from your paper, and should be presented in an orderly fashion. (Intro., body, conclusion)
- At the end of your presentation, your classmates will ask questions, make comments/suggestions. They will be given class participation credit for asking thoughtful questions.
- Do not worry if you cannot answer their questions. You may, however, want to incorporate good points made by your classmates in the final draft of your paper.
The background and significance of the problem and a clear statement of the research purpose is provided. The search history is mentioned.
Content is well-organized with headings for each slide and bulleted lists to group related material as needed. Use of font, color, graphics, effects, etc. to enhance readability and presentation content is excellent. Length requirements of 10 slides/pages or less is met.
More depth/detail for the background and significance is needed, or the research detail is not clear. No search history information is provided.
Review of relevant theoretical literature is evident, but there is little integration of studies into concepts related to problem. Review is partially focused and organized. Supporting and opposing research are included. Summary of information presented is included. Conclusion may not contain a biblical integration.
Content is somewhat organized, but no structure is apparent. The use of font, color, graphics, effects, etc. is occasionally detracting to the presentation content. Length requirements may not be met.
The background and/or significance are missing. No search history information is provided.
Review of relevant theoretical literature is evident, but there is no integration of studies into concepts related to problem. Review is partially focused and organized. Supporting and opposing research are not included in the summary of information presented. Conclusion does not contain a biblical integration.
There is no clear or logical organizational structure. No logical sequence is apparent. The use of font, color, graphics, effects etc. is often detracting to the presentation content. Length requirements may not be met
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The Art of Poetry Assignments