英语文学欣赏 Syllabus (Ⅰ)
Introduction ? Week 2-5 Unit 1 Identity ? Week 6-8 Unit 2 Spiritual Growth ? Week 9-14 Unit 3 Love, poetry reading ? Week 15-18 Unit 4 Family
Poetry Writing and Reading: during this course, you are supposed to write a love poem and read it in class. (poetry reading time is about the middle of the term) Written assignment: you are supposed to write a short story about spiritual growth during this term. Assessment: classroom participation 10% poetry reading 20% written assignment 20% final exam 50%
Lecture One How to Read Literature?
Read for Meaning
Plato only allows the serious poets and story-tellers who will write about virtues only to live in his ideal republic.
Aristotle believes that tragedy has the function of catharsis, that is, through watching a great tragedy, people find their violent emotions relieved and themselves purified. Chinese idea “文以明道”（荀子）“ “文以载道”（曹丕） “文以贯道” （韩愈） “文所以再载道也” （周敦颐）
Read for Form
Poetry is a form of language characterized by an orientation towards its own form. What it first of all allows us to see in a fresh manner is language itself. The form is part of the content. “Art exists that one may recover the sensation of life…The purpose of art is to impart the sensation of things as they are perceived and not as they are known” (Shklovsky)
An Example of “form is content”
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
l(a Le af fa ll s) one l
Questions for Pondering
? What is special about the form of the above
poem? ? How does the form of the poem contribute to the meaning? ? Please interpret the poem
A poem inspired by e. e. cummings (a student’s work)
? P(a ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
M an fa ll s ) A In
An extreme form of “form is content”: language poetry
? L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E P=O=E=T=S by poet Bernadette
Mayer in her work, "Experiments":
? Systematically derange the language, for example, write a
work consisting only of prepositional phrases, or, add a gerundive to every line of an already existing piece of prose or poetry, etc.
? Get a group of words (make a list or select at random);
then form these words (only) into a piece of writing— whatever the words allow. Let them demand their own form, and/or: Use certain words in a set way, like, the same word in every line, or in a certain place in every paragraph, etc. Design words.
? Write what cannot be written, for example, compose an index. (Read
an index as a poem).
? Attempt writing in a state of mind that seems least congenial. ? ? Consider word & letter as forms—the concretistic distortion of a text, for
example, too many o's or a multiplicity of thin letters (illftiii, etc.)
? ? Attempt to eliminate all connotation from a piece of writing & vice versa. ? ? Work your ass off to change the language & don't ever get famous.
Some L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E P=O=E=M=S
? Sad Boy's Sad Boy
? BY CHARLES BERNSTEIN ? I ruin my hats and all the mat slides glad ? I hop my girls and all is skip again ? I jump I run you up inside my truck ? The car goes looping out in dark and light ? And yellow hat slides in ? I run my mats and all the girl slides glad ? I hoped you skipped me into luck ? And jump me black, ruin me glad ? I jump I run you up inside my truck ?
? I jump my slopes and all the dopes slide glad ? I glide my luck and all is slip again ? I jump my hopes and all the rope glides sad ?
I skip you jump the way you said ? But I run old and sigh your name ? I ruin my mats and all the girl slides glad
At least when luck hops it skips back again ? A rune my mats and all the girls slide glad ? I jump I run you up inside my truck
After "Mad Girl's Love Song" by Sylvia Plath
? 《婚宴》 ? 车前子 ? 这一首诗不适合朗读， 因为扫雪的声音， 沙沙沙沙地太响了。
南方人扫雪一把条帚， 北方人扫雪一把铲子， 其实是铲雪。 一个名词嫁给不同的动词， 我们正去婚宴的路上， 又送了一次礼。 犀牛 姓犀牛的走到王府井。 姓薛的讨厌姓朱的，就把 自己租来的公寓，叫“杀猪楼”。
借住在农民房里，称“扫雪庄”。 姓车的人好，大家就乘他。 姓犀牛的走到王府井， 再好的车也不载犀牛。 早晨 小椿树胡同里的一棵椿树， 我摸过一百只乳房。 可能是五十对。 我已没有了虚荣心。 一棵椿树越看越不像椿树， 也不像槐树。 业余爱好
或者这脑袋是别人的。 有的时候我愿意把脑袋送人， 但眼镜要留下来。 没什么道理，仅仅是业余爱好。 观念艺术 我热爱的朋友不会在这时打电话， 他们知道我睡觉的天赋。 上午十点钟，我被吵醒了： “喂，喂，是烤鸭店吗？” 我一下没了脾气，我说： “不，不，烧鸡铺子。” 喻体 他扫雪， 裤管像仅剩的桥墩， 剥掉白老虎的皮。 作为喻体它是流水浊泥的。
Enjoy the Forms!
What did You Get From Gazing at the Above Pictures?
? Begin to look at things with fresh looks? ? Begin to think differently?
Does Mere Form Make Good Poetry?
? ? ? ? ?
毫无疑问 我做的馅饼 是全天下 最好吃的 ----赵丽华
? What do you think of the poem? It has the
form of a poem. Is it a poem?
? Marxist Reading: it is not the consciousness of men that
determines their existence, but their social existence that determines their consciousness.
Feminist Reading: focus on woman as reader (image and stereotypes of women, omission and misconceptions about women in criticism) and woman as writer (female language, psychology, etc.)
Race-oriented Reading: read from racial perspective. Is certain race ignored or treated unjustly in the work? Is the image of certain race distorted or stereotyped? Is the tone favorably or unfavorably biased towards a certain race? Etc.
? This reading is to overturn traditional assumption that the text has a definite structure therefore a definite meaning. Deconstructive reading is to find “holes”, things that show that a definite interpretation is impossible. ? So according to the deconstructionist, there is never any definite meaning. There is never any ending to any text. The meaning is forever flowing. ? The deconstructionist reading has liberated (overliberated) the text and given great power (to the degree of anarchy) to the readers.
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