Course Instructor Days Times Room


This course will introduce you to central developments in twentieth-century American poetry and poetics. Rather than use an anthology, we will study the work of 10-12 poets closely, starting in the 1910s with modernism and ending with a poet published in the last year (so technically we will enter the 21st century). We will pay close attention to each poet’s aesthetic aims and formal strategies, and will also consider important historical and cultural contexts for their work. While this course imparts knowledge of particular poets and poems, it no less importantly seeks to develop your powers of textual analysis and your ability to express your ideas clearly and effectively in writing.

If you are having trouble registering for this course, please contact James Kallerman in the Undergraduate Office ( you may need to get an override for the prerequisites, as several students were initially prevented from registering for this reason.


Several short analytical essays: two will be close readings of poems, one will involve using digital humanities tools to "close read" a poem in a different way

A book review of a work of poetry not on the syllabus, to be presented to the class

An annotated bibliography & final research paper

Final group presentation (on research for final paper)


Attendance will be factored into your grade: excellent attendance is expected.