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Poets on Teaching

A Sourcebook


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2010
344 pp., 6 1/8 x 9 1/4 inches
Paper: 
$29.95
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$20.00
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1-58729-904-6
978-1-58729-904-9

“Here is an astonishingly generous gathering of poetic energies and imaginations aimed toward turning more and more classrooms into scenes of transformative engagement with the prime instrument of our humanity, language. The essential work of exploratory play with words is presented in heartening variety in its necessary wildness, surprising pleasures, gravitas, illumination. This book is a catalogue of invention: visionary, pragmatic, surprising, fun—useful because it’s inspiring and vice versa. The poets’ essays are themselves an affirmation of the vital presence of poetry in our culture, proof and promise, Q.E.D.”—Joan Retallack, coeditor, Poetry and Pedagogy: The Challenge of the Contemporary, and author, The Poethical Wager

In response to a lack of source works for wide-ranging approaches to teaching poetry, award-winning poet Joshua Marie Wilkinson has gathered ninety-nine micro-essays for poets, critics, and scholars who teach and for students who wish to learn about the many ways poets think about how a poem comes alive from within—and beyond—a classroom. Not narrowly concerned with how to read poetry or how to write poetry, by virtue of their central concern with teaching poetry, the essays in this fresh and innovative volume address both reading and writing and give teachers and students useful tools for the classroom and beyond.

Divided into four sections—“Reflections | Poetics,” “Exercises | Praxis,”  “New Approaches to Poetry Courses and Methodology,” and “Talks | Directives”—Poets on Teaching provides practical, intelligent advice. “Reflections | Poetics” encompasses the most expansive approaches to teaching poetry, where poets reflect variously on what teachers can cultivate in their classrooms. “Exercises | Praxis” consists of hands-on approaches to reading and, especially, writing poems. “New Approaches to Poetry Courses and Methodology” features essays on rethinking specific courses, offering new ideas for course design and pedagogy. “Talks | Directives” contains a series of more informal and conversational discussions geared toward becoming a stronger reader, writer, teacher, and student of poetry.

Poets on Teaching encompasses the most expansive approaches to teaching poetry, where poets reflect variously on what teachers can bring to and cultivate in their classrooms. As Sarah Gridley writes, "The best class will be weirded out—punctured—made eccentric—by the creeping, crawling, flashing, or thundering in of something that is not in the classroom." Exciting and vibrant, this book will be required reading for new and experienced teachers alike.

Contributors: 

Kazim Ali, Rae Armantrout, Hadara Bar-Nadav, Dan Beachy-Quick, Bruce Beasley, Claire Becker, Jaswinder Bolina, Jenny Boully, Joel Brouwer, Lily Brown, Laynie Browne, Stephen Burt, Julie Carr, Joshua Clover, Matthew Cooperman, Oliver de la Paz, Linh Dinh, Ben Doller, Sandra Doller, Julie Doxsee, Lisa Fishman, Graham Foust, John Gallaher, Forrest Gander, C. S. Giscombe, Peter Gizzi, Lara Glenum, Kenneth Goldsmith, Johannes Göransson, Noah Eli Gordon, Arielle Greenberg, Richard Greenfield, Sarah Gridley, Anthony Hawley, Terrance Hayes, Eric Hayot, Brian Henry, Brenda Hillman, Jen Hofer, Paul Hoover, Christine Hume, Brenda Iijima, Lisa Jarnot, Kent Johnson, Bhanu Kapil, Karla Kelsey, Aaron Kunin, Quraysh Ali Lansana, Dorothea Lasky, Sueyeun Juliette Lee, Ada Limón, Timothy Liu, Sabrina Orah Mark, Dawn Lundy Martin, Kristi Maxwell, Joyelle McSweeney, Christina Mengert, Albert Mobilio, K. Silem Mohammad, Fred Moten, Jennifer Moxley, Laura Mullen, Sawako Nakayasu, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Hoa Nguyen, Jena Osman, D. A. Powell, Kristin Prevallet, Bin Ramke, Jed Rasula, Srikanth Reddy, Barbara Jane Reyes, Boyer Rickel, Elizabeth Robinson, Martha Ronk, Emily Rosko, Prageeta Sharma, Evie Shockley, Eleni Sikelianos, Richard Siken, Ron Silliman, Tracy K. Smith, Juliana Spahr, Sasha Steensen, Peter Streckfus, Cole Swensen, Michael Theune, Tony Trigilio, Spring Ulmer, Karen Volkman, Catherine Wagner, G. C. Waldrep, Mark Wallace, Tyrone Williams, Mark Yakich, Jake Adam York, Stephanie Young, Timothy Yu, Matthew Zapruder, Andrew Zawacki, and Rachel Zucker

 

 

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