Reading and Writing Poetry: the Art of Revision (LIT4239.01)

Natalie Scenters-Zapico

Kevin Young writes about the haunting qualities of revision in The Grey Album, “…I have been thinking about the idea of a shadow book—a book that we don’t have, but know of, a book that may haunt the very book we have in our hands.” Every writer must become enamored with the art of revision, and become familiar with the many shadows, or potential iterations, of any poem. In this course, we will focus on poetry and the art of revision. We will question traditional notions of the writing process as being motivated by forward progress over time, and instead focus on the possibility of play over time in a poem. To guide our work we will look at a variety of revision strategies by poets including, John Ashbery, Juan Felipe Herrera, C.D. Wright, Carl Phillips, and more. Students will create a portfolio that documents a series of revisions through the writing workshop, and keep a process notebook which will serve as both a catalogue of writing time and experiences, and as the springboard for insight into revising new work. Corequisites: Students in this class are required to attend Wednesday night literature events.

Prerequisites: Interested students should submit a writing sample to nataliesz@bennington.edu by Monday, November 19. Class lists will be posted outside the Literature office on Monday, November 26.
Credits: 4
M 2:10pm - 4:00pm; Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
Maximum Enrollment: 15
This course is categorized as All courses, 4000, Monday and/or Thursday Afternoons, Four Credit, Areas of Study, Literature, Natalie Scenters-Zapico.