The Romantic Poets and Us
Instructor: Priscilla Gilman, Author
The poets we now consider Romantic never referred to themselves or their poetry as such. Therefore, how do we define Romanticism and what are the characteristics of a Romantic poet? These questions and more will be considered by reading some of the most important and influential works of British Romanticism and studying them from a cultural and literary context. Author and former Yale University and Vasser College professor of English literature Priscilla Gilman will lead discussions of Romantic poetry’s origins at the end of the 18th century, its relation to satiric poetry and gothic literature, the influences of the first (Blake, Wordsworth, Coleridge) and second (Byron, Shelley, Keats) generations of romantic poets, and romanticism’s legacy. Themes and topics of discussion will also include the Romantics' interest in the psychology and philosophy of memory; the relationship of Romanticism to the French Revolution and English Nationalism; and the period's emphasis on feeling, sensibility, and pathos.