Presentation Details

The Second International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities

Teaching Poetry in the New Humanities World Order

Dr Gregory Kratzmann.

This paper is based on my experience of teaching a first –year poetry subject, ‘Poetry and Desire’, during the last few years. Texts in this subject range from Chaucer to oral poetry to rock lyrics, from the British and American modernists to the work of Gwen Harwood. Although the students tend to be self-selecting, nevertheless questions are always raised about the relevance of what they are asked to do, questions which are prompted by anxieties about studying for a degree which is largely non-vocational. This paper outlines some of the challenges (and the delights) of introducing students to a somewhat eclectic syllabus of poetry selected from different periods and different cultures, and suggests some ways in which the teaching of poetry at school and university is central to the continuing vitality of the humanities curriculum.


Dr Gregory Kratzmann  (Australia)
School of Communication, Arts and Critical Enquiry
LaTrobe University

  • Poetry and Desire’

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)