For Essay 2, you will choose one or two poems by the same poet for which to write an analysis of the poem. You will include as part of this analysis two outside sources. One outside source will be on the biography of the poet you have chosen. The other outside source will be your choice. You may have more than one outside sources.
You will use one of the themes in the poem (i.e., family, marriage, sexuality, death, love,etc.) and use your outside sources to speak to that particular theme. For example, if you choose to focus on the theme of death, you will use the biography and other outside source to speak specifically to how that manifested in the poem you chose.
Here is an example. If I choose Amiri Barka as my poet and I choose “An Agony. As Now.” , I could focus on the theme of self-doubt. In my review of his biography, I will look to see if there were any instances where self-doubt is mentioned or referenced through any particular incident or event in his life. I will also look at videos of interviews with him for same. Any outside source I find on him, I will look to see if this theme of self-doubt crops up as it will help me for my analysis of the poem and specifically how this theme of self-doubt is present in it. Other themes for that poem could be: race, age, regret, and art.
Other outside sources you may want to look at:
interviews with the poet
criticism that poet might have written on other art work or poetry
historical records of the time the poem was written (you may find social unrest, war, famine, economic harship, natural disaster, etc.)
philosphies that were new and fashionable (you may find that existentialism, dadaism, hedonism, or other philosphies were new and interesting)
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