Wit, sex and passion: 17th century English poets

Course Dates: 21/04/20 - 19/05/20
Time: 12:30 - 14:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street
Tutors:

English 17th C poetry is characterised by wit and wordplay that still delight. The poems of John Donne are brilliantly ingenious depictions of sexual passion; those of George Herbert moving meditations on religious love; while poems such as To His Coy Mistress tread a fine line between seduction and blackmail.

Description

What is the course about?

Samuel Johnson called them “Metaphysical” poets. They were rediscovered in the 20thC by the likes of TS Eliot who loved their bold use of ideas and imagery. Since then they have been admired and studied by poets and critics alike.

Tutor biography
Julian Birkett is a teacher and writer specialising in literature. He previously worked in the Arts department at the BBC as a producer of series such as The Late Show, Modern Poets in their Own Words, The Victorians and The Culture Show. He has taught in London and at the University of Mumbai.

What will we cover?

We’ll be reading a range of brilliant, often complex poems by poets such as John Donne, Andrew Marvell, George Herbert and Henry Vaughan. These poets revelled in wit, in being clever, ingenious and inventive about everything from seduction to sanctity, ecstasy to exploration.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

• Recognise recurring themes in the 17th century poetry.
• Relate these to the wider world of Western culture
• Feel confident enough to explore further study of related fiction on your own
• Recognise recurring themes in the 17th century poetry.
• Relate these to the wider world of Western culture
• Feel confident enough to explore further study of related poetry on your own.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

The course is introductory. An enthusiasm for reading and discussion is all that is required.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?


Each week we’ll read and discuss a handful of poems by one poet.

The course is an interactive mixture of tutor exposition and class discussion. Videos and clips will also be shown and discussed where applicable. You will asked to read the texts before the class.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Students should buy or borrow The Metaphysical Poets (Penguin, ed Helen Gardner)

Apart from the reading material, you should bring with you pens, notepaper and file in which to store handouts and other course materials.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Please see our literature classes under Humanities in the prospectus and under History, Cuture and Writing on the web at www.citylit.ac.uk.

Reviews
Tutor Biographies
Julian Birkett

Julian Birkett is a teacher and writer specialising in modern literature. He previously worked in the Arts department at the BBC as a producer of series such as The Late Show, Modern Poets in their Own Words, The Victorians and The Culture Show. He has taught in London and at the University of Mumbai.He aims to create a friendly but thoughtful atmosphere in his City Lit classes and to provide a stimulating variety of activities from tutor input to discussion to group work and video clips.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.

Book your place

Course Code: HLT25

Tue, day, 21 Apr - 19 May '20

Duration: 5 sessions (over 5 weeks)

Full fee: £99.00
Senior fee: £79.00
Concession: £44.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

Download form & post

Any questions? humanities@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 7492 2652

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.