English 150

Senior Seminar: Emily Dickinson

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
9 Fall 2005 Shoptaw, John
Shoptaw, John
TTh 11-12:30 305 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

Dickinson, E.: The Poems of Emily Dickinson, Selected Letters; Habegger, A.: My Wars Are Laid Away in Books; Course reader


"This is an intensive course in the poetry of Emily Dickinson. We will read her poems, along with her letters and a biography, deeply but also broadly throughout her career. Topics include early poetry; musical poetics; figuration; definition and riddle; death, religion, and nature as topic and as figure; love poetry and poetic seduction; emotion and suspense; gender and sexuality; self-definition; biography; manuscript poem packets; poems revisiting poems; letters and/as poems; contemporary history (e.g., Civil War); contemporary poetry (e.g., Emerson, Robert & E.B. Browning); late poetry; 20th-century influence. There will be periodic exercises, and a final paper of around 20 pages. There will also be a final party, during which students are invited read their optional ""Dickinson"" poems. "

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