Week 2 discussion | composition III

Symbolism and Metaphor in Four Poets’ Work: Brooks, Dickinson, Frost, and Hughes 

By the due date assigned, post a one- or two-paragraph response of at least 150-200 words to the Discussion Area. By the end of Week 2, comment on at least two of your classmates’ submissions.

Prompt: 

  • Choose a poem to analyze from this week’s assigned reading list (see below). We are reading and discussing the works of Gwendolyn Brooks, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, and Langston Hughes.
  • Create a written response of a paragraph or two of at least 150-200 words.
  • You may use the following questions to develop a response to your poem, or you may discuss another more appropriate literary element (e.g., imagery, characterization, theme) as best fits your selection:
    • What are some of the key symbols or metaphors in the poem, and how are they used to convey meaning to the reader?
    • How do these elements enrich the poem and deepen your understanding of its themes?
    • What is your reaction to the poem’s content and language? Would you recommend this poem to friends?

Read the following poems and choose one to discuss:

  • Brooks:
    • “First Fight. Then Fiddle”
    • “Sadie and Maud”
    • “We Real Cool”
    • “What Shall I Give My Children?”
  • Dickinson:
    • “Because I Could Not Stop for Death”
    • “’Faith’ Is A Fine Invention”
    • “’Hope’ Is the Thing with Feathers”
    • “I Heard A Fly Buzz When I Died”
    • “I Like to See It Lap the Miles”
    • “Much Madness Is Divinest Sense”
    • “My Life Had Stood—A Loaded Gun”
    • “There’s A Certain Slant of Light”
    • “This Is My Letter to the World”
  • Frost:
    • “Birches”
    • “Fire and Ice”
    • “Mending Wall”
    • “Nothing Gold Can Stay”
    • “For Once, Then, Something”
    • “Out, Out”
    • “The Road Not Taken”
    • “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”
  • Hughes:
    • “Harlem”
    • “Negro”
    • “The Negro Speaks of Rivers”
    • “Theme for English B”

Tips

Remember to provide evidence for your claims in the form of quoted passages from the poem. Quotations, paraphrases, and summaries should be cited according to APA rules of style, including in-text and reference citations. Quoted material should not exceed 25% of the document. Check grammar and spelling before posting.

When you are responding to the posts of your classmates:

  • Discuss any similarities or differences you have with their interpretations.
  • Did their conclusions help you to see the poem any differently than your first impression of the work?
  • Elaborate on any key points.

Your replies to classmates should be at least a paragraph in length and made with an eye to expand, clarify, defend, and/or refine their thoughts. Consider asking questions to further meaningful conversation. Participation must be completed by the end of the week to earn credit.

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