Skip to Gallatin Navigation Skip to Gallatin Main Content

Poetry and the Politics of Decolonization

Semester and Year SP 2018
Course Number IDSEM-UG1866
Section 001
Instructor Linn Cary Mehta
Days TR
Time 2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Units 4
Level U
Requirement   HUM, GLOBAL



The course looks at poets writing in the twentieth century and after whose work is concerned with liberation from colonial rule and, subsequently, with the formation of a post-colonial literary voice. Poetry in the period of decolonization deals with issues of national, racial, and gender identity, place and displacement, and freedom from linguistic and political oppression. We will read, among others, poets from the Indian Subcontinent and Middle East such as Tagore, Iqbal, Faiz and Darwish; two leading poets of négritude, Aimé Césaire and Léopold Senghor, in relation to movements in Caribbean, African, and American literature from the Harlem Renaissance to the present (Claude McKay, Langston Hughes, Nicolas Guillén, and Derek Walcott); Latin American poets including Gabriela Mistral, Pablo Neruda, and Octavio Paz; and English-language poets including W.B. Yeats, William Carlos Williams, and more contemporary movements in poetry. Using theory and historical background, we will look at the work of each poet comparatively in the context of international development and political change. The course offers an approach to globalization through literature; since this process has touched so much of the world, we are open to works from other literatures that students propose.


All Syllabi

Course Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)