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Fairhaven Seminar on Reading and Writing Poetry

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Transcript of a Fairhaven College Seminar:

On Starting to Read and Write Poetry

(recorded and transcribed by Desmond Jagewon)*

 

Carol: All right people; lets get started.  We have a guest today — the poet Roger William Gilman.  Our topic is “How does one get started reading and writing poetry?”  What are the alternatives?

 

Roger: Thanks for the invite.  As a philosopher, I don’t often get to talk directly about reading and writing poetry.  The closest I usually get to these topics is in a philosophy of language course (talking about how metaphors make their meaning; and explaining how you can tell the truth by using a metaphorical or ironical sentence that is not literally true); or in a class on ethics (where we might consider, among other things, the question of moral limits on the responses to, or interpretations and uses of, a poem – or any other kind of artwork for that matter); or perhaps in a course on the philosophy of literature (where we might be considering the question: what is the contribution of consuming literary works to cultivating our humanity?).

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