Homework for September 19

Hi Class,

Since we have quite a list of fun things for next week, I’ve posted it here:


  1. Terms to define:



–Free Verse

–Prose Poem


–American Renaissance (in literature)

–Harlem Renaissance (in literature)

–Victorian Poetry

–Realism (in the arts and literature)

–Modernism (in the arts and literature)

2. Journal #2: Define all of the above terms and provide the title of a poem (from 101 Great American Poems) in which you see the term at work. 1-2 pages, typed.

3. Read pages 41-80 in 101 Great American Poems.

4. Read Dave Edward’s two poems in preparation for his visit to our class next week.

5. Make sure to bring in your book: Poems of New York.

Email any questions,


Prof. Scanlan

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Reminder for Wednesday, September 12th

Hi Class,

For today’s class please make sure that you have read all the poems in the yellow packet that I gave you. Also, read up to page 41 in your 101 Great American Poems book. Make sure and bring both of these to class. And after you’ve read all these poems, look up and write down definitions for the terms that we covered in last Wednesday’s class:

-Lyric poetry

-Narrative poetry






Bonus: What is your definition of poetry?

All this should help to prepare you for the quiz that we will have at the beginning of class.

If you have any questions, please email me.


Prof. Scanlan

ps. I had the name of the poet who wrote “In a Station of the Metro” wrong. Sorry. Here is the whole thing, which is by Ezra Pound in 1916:

In a Station of the Metro

The apparition of these faces in the crowd;

Petals on a wet, black bough.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hello Students!


Hello students of poetry! This is our OpenLab website for English 2003, section 1236.

This site will grow and develop during the semester, just like you will grow and develop as poetry readers.

If you have any questions, please let me know via email:


The course policy and syllabus are located in the Policy menu bar. Take some time to look around our course site; we will refer to it often.

Below are some interesting and informative posts from my personal vault of curious information.

Best wishes,

Prof. Scanlan

ps. Our first book, 101 Great American Poems, is on the shelves in the City Tech bookstore!



Question: Why is poetry appropriate during the swearing-in ceremony for a country’s President?

Maya Angelou reading at President Clinton’s inauguration:


Alexander reading at President Obama’s inauguration:





HIP HOP as Poetry and Cultural Expression

Students often ask me: is hip hop poetry or music or something in-between? And,where can I go to learn more about this art form and its history? The answer: books. The reason I like books is because they contain deep history, sustained argument, and they often provide footnotes and indexes–so that you can find other sources. Here are a few of my favorite books on popular and hip hop music:

Adam Bradley: Book of Rhymes: The Poetics of Hip Hop (2009)

Jeff Chang and DJ Herc: Can’t Stop Won’t Stop (2005)

Jeff Chang: Total Chaos

Tricia Rose: Hip Hop Wars (2008)

Alan Light: Vibe History of Hip Hop

Nelson George: Hip Hop America

Mark Anthony Neal: That’s the Joint: Hip Hop Studies Reader

Gwendolyn Pough: Home Girls Make Some Noise

Eric Michael Dyson: Know What I Mean?

**There are many other books on music, and I do not mean to imply that other types and genres of music are not as important as hip hop.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment