In part IV of this fascinating series, Professor Drout submerses listeners in poetry's past, present, and future. Addressing such poetic luminaries as Milton,Wordsworth, Shelley, and Keats, these lectures explain in simple terms what poetry is while following its development through the centuries.
©2008 Michael D.C. Drout; (P)2008 Recorded Books, LLC
Gotta love Drout - such a great teacher. This installment of the Modern Scholar explain poetry very clearly for the uninformed (like me). Best is the explanation of iambic pentameter, meter, etc. The only problem I have is that he devoted almost a whole lecture to John Donne and spent only 4 minutes on Milton - even though the chapter was entitled Milton. But that aside - Drout still rules!
If the "professor" actually knew which poets wrote which poems
Nothing from this series
The *professor* refers to Keats THREE times when discussing Ode to the West Wind which is actually written by Shelley. Dude, get your poets straight. If you're going to lecture on a poem you should at least know who wrote it.....
Would recommend to my peers because author/narrator is very passionate about subject.
His story about the poet Lord Byron.
Definitely worth it.
I will be listening to this one several times. Listening to an hour or two a day is best in my opinion. It contains so much information its a lot to take in at once but It is so well done I can't speak highly enough of it.
I must say it pains me to give this title only three stars, because of how thoroughly I enjoyed many of the lectures and because of what a thoughtful, engaging teacher Prof. Drout is. After having listened to the lectures, I have a much better understanding of poetic techniques such as meter and rhythm, as well as the history of poetry in English. What I don't understand that much better is the meaning in the poetry itself. Maybe I was expecting a more hand-holding approach, guiding if not line-by-line then at least stanza-by-stanza, explaining what the poet was actually saying - not just how they were saying it. He seemed to think that part was self-evident when for me it often was not.
Part of the problem was just how short it was, when you're trying to look at the entire history of poetry in English. He seems to spend a lot of time just telling you how much he's leaving out. I am interested in history generally, and in the history of the English language specifically, so I was looking forward to the historical aspect. But looking back I think, for a course in "Understanding Poetry", I would've gotten more out of it if there was less of a historical aspect, and more analysis.
"Light enjoyable and easy to listen"
A Way with Words IV: Understanding Poetry is really a wonderful lecture. It's not your average set of dry facts (this and this poet born and died wrote this and that... to be noted for the use of ...). Instead you (as the listener) are made to understand the poets as humans with their 'normal' (and not so normal) life stories. You come to understand how the poetry evolved and how is it that it came to be the way it is now. The facts are sort of thrown in and you cannot help but to remember them...
Most of all it's really enjoyable to listen and I did so at least 10 times.
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