ENGL 236

The English Sonnet

Prerequisite: First-year students with permission. A study of the sonnet, arguably the most versatile and enduring poetic form in English. We will read major sonnets and sonnet cycles of the Renaissance, including works by Petrarch (in translation), Wyatt, Sidney, Wroth, Spenser, Shakespeare, Donne, and Milton. We will investigate historical and social trends in the poetry, and we will consider how individual writers adapt the form for their own ends. Finally, we will examine the sonnet's development since its resurgence in the Romantic period. III.O, V.2