Courses of Study 2014-2015 
    May 23, 2022  
Courses of Study 2014-2015 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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LING 2285 - Linguistic Theory and Poetic Structure

(crosslisted) ENGL 2960  
Fall. 4 credits.

Co-meets with ENGL 6785 /LING 6285 .

J. Bowers.

Poems are among the most highly structured linguistic objects that human beings produce. While some of the devices used in poetry are arbitrary and purely conventional, most are natural extensions of structural properties inherent in natural language itself. The aim of this course is to reveal the ways in which poetry is structured at every level, from rhyme to metaphor, and to show how certain results of modern linguistics can usefully be applied to the analysis and interpretation of poetry. After introducing some of the basic concepts of modern phonology, syntax and semantics, it will be shown how literary notions such as rhyme, meter, enjambment and metaphor can be formally defined in linguistic terms. These results will then be applied to the analysis of particular poems and shown to yield novel and interesting insights into both their structure and interpretation.

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