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Poetry and Power: Text, Voice, Song


  • Credit value: 30 credits at Level 5
  • Convenor: Professor Sue Wiseman
  • Tutors: Professor Sue Wiseman and members of the department
  • Assessment: coursework of 1000 words (15%), a 1500-word essay (35%) and a 2000-word essay (50%)

Module description

What is the relationship between poetry and power? Often closely associated with the presentation of ideas for change, poetry as a written form is also related to song and voice. This module takes three or four specific periods as case studies in genre. You will examine the place of poetry and the work it does in social worlds.

Indicative module syllabus

  • Poetry as a genre
  • Introducing issues in the study of poetry
  • Contemporary poetry
  • Examining text, orality and song in contemporary poetry
  • Medieval and Renaissance poetry
  • Politics, genre and form 1700-1830
  • Return to modern and contemporary poetry

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will:

  • be able to think explicitly about genre as a core aspect of literary study
  • demonstrate familiarity with the way poetry is used in specific contexts
  • understand the ideas underpinning poetic forms
  • be able to write about specific poems using close analysis and context
  • begin to develop an understanding of the different forms associated with specific contexts.