Thursday, April 20, 2017

Hmm …

… Students should be taught new kinds of poetry (essay). (Hat tip, G.E. Reutter.)

At Yale University’s English Department, where I earned my Ph.D., poetry is making headlines. Last spring, students petitioned the faculty to scrap Major English Poets, a required yearlong sequence featuring mostly white men. Last fall, faculty members agreed to meet to reconsider every word in the title of the course. And just recently, the faculty voted to revise the major, retaining historical distribution requirements while adding a new course, World Anglophone Literature. Major English Poets is now optional.
Exactly how you are supposed to master poetry in English without knowing the works of the major poets who have written in English is a question that appears to have eluded the petitioners. If you don't want to learn more than what you already know, or think you know, don't bother attending school. Of course, a school that would give in to such a demand isn't worth attending. The Simpsons has happily addressed this.

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