ENG 106 is an introduction to poetry suited to all undergraduate students, with or without a background in poetry. Through analysis and discussion of poems by a variety of writers, some well-known and some likely unfamiliar, students will practice ways of reading poetry for pleasure and meaning. We will also explore how a poem communicates meaning differently from other genres. Weekly readings are generally relatively short but often demanding, and students will do a substantial amount of formal essay writing (analytical, synthetic, and evaluative). Students will also collaborate with peers in class and on one out-of-class project. The initial organization of this course is driven by form, during which time we will learn vocabulary and analytical skills to help us approach “formal” verse; in the later weeks of the term students will have the opportunity to select some poems and poets for class study. This course satisfies the university’s Group Requirement in the Arts and Letters category.
Arts & Letters (A&L) courses create meaningful opportunities for students to engage actively in the modes of inquiry that define a discipline. Courses are broad in scope and demonstrably liberal in nature (that is, courses that promote open inquiry from a variety of perspectives). Though some courses may focus on specialized subjects or approaches, there will be a substantial course content locating that subject in the broader context of the major issues of the discipline. Qualifying courses will not focus on teaching basic skills but will require the application or engagement of those skills through analysis and interpretation.
Lower-division Elective courses allow students to choose (or “elect”) courses or faculty specific to their own developing interests, enabling them thereby to shape their own educational experience. Major II students can also use one lower-division elective to fulfill the Writing Requirement with ENG 209 The Craft of the Sentence.
English Minor courses offer students centuries of cultural experience and representation in poetry, prose, drama, film, TV, new media, and folk artifacts. The English minor can focus and extend the values of a liberal arts education, while also providing extensive training in writing, speaking, and critical thinking.