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Philosophy for Poets [Kascha Semonovitch]

All Levels | Philosophy and poetry come from the same source, said Heidegger, Arendt, and Aristotle. That source is thinking. How do poets show thinking? We will look at philosophical poems by Wordsworth, Rilke, Koethe, Carson, Hass, and Ryan. We’ll consider poetic philosophy by Herder, Descartes, Weil, and Merleau-Ponty, examining how each describes the sense of touch. No experience in philosophy required. We’ll find juicy words and new puzzles to drive our own writing. Course includes in-class exploratory writing and brief homework assignments to research examples. Thoughts and examples here.

Sample Schedule:

Class 1 | On Arguments
Readings from: Gregory Pardlo, Michelle Montaigne, W.B. Yeats, Plato, W.H. Auden and Hannah Arendt.

Class 2 | On Justice
Readings from: Plato, Republic. Robert Haas, Antigone.

Class 3 | On Clarity and the Self
Readings from: Descartes and Hume; W.C. Williams and Wallace Stevens.

Class 4 | On Beauty
Readings from: Plato, Kant, John Donne, G.M. Hopkins, Anne Carson.

Class 5 | On Touch
Readings from: Descartes, Hume, Herder, Schiller, Rilke.

Class 6 | On Touch
Readings from: Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Jean‐Luc Nancy, Arendt, Auden, Adrienne Rich, Jane Hirschfield.