Most of us have a kind of cultural awareness – which we may or may not have gotten in school – about the giants of nineteenth century poetry, from William Wordsworth and Percy Bysshe Shelley to Alfred Tennyson and the Brownings. But why do these famous figures matter? Does their work really stand the test of time? And where would we start in order to find out? In this seminar, Professor Fiona Sampson, one of the UK’s leading poets and a scholar in the field, takes us through some great examples. We look at poems as both masterpieces in their own right, as well as signposts to the field around them.
Wordsworth’s Poetry and Prose – Nicholas Halmi, ed.
Shelley’s Poetry and Prose – Donald H. Reiman and Neil Fraistat, eds.
Romanticism: An Anthology – Duncan Wu, ed.
- Is it okay to have favorites from among the canon of “great” poets?
- These may be wonderful poems, but does the world they reflect still have relevance for us today?
- Did you have to memorize poems during your education – and if so, was this a good thing?
- Our session couldn’t be comprehensive in the time we had: what other poems would you add to the ones we covered?