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Modern Poetry and the Senses

Semester and Year SP 2017
Course Number IDSEM-UG1859
Section 001
Instructor Lisa Goldfarb
Days TR
Time 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Units 4
Level U
Requirement   HUM



In a letter that he wrote to his Cuban correspondent, Jose Rodriguez Feo, Wallace Stevens referred to Marcel Proust as a poet. “It seems like a revelation,” Stevens wrote of Proust, “but it is quite possible to say that that is exactly what he was and perhaps all that he was.” Proust’s masterpiece,  In Search of Lost Time , is often considered for the way it challenged and enlarged the form of the 20th century novel, as well as for the author’s meticulous exploration of the workings of time, history, memory, psychology, and the senses. Yet, it is more unusual to study Proust as a poet, or for his impact on modern poetry. In this course, therefore, we begin our study of the presentation and importance of the senses in modern poetry with Proust (via portions of  In Search of  Lost Time) . Proust will then serve as prelude to our examination of the various ways that modern poets respond to, follow, and reach beyond him in their use and portrayal of the senses (and, by extension, time and memory). Contextual materials may include, among other texts, Bergson’s "Introduction to Metaphysics" and Susan Stewart’s  Modern Poetry and the Fate of the  Senses . Primary readings include portions of Proust’s  In Search of Lost  Time , and poetry and essays of Valéry, Eliot, Pound, Moore, Bishop, Auden, Stevens, and Brooks.


All Syllabi

Course Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)