In the American Strain: Music in Writing 1855-1975
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The seminar is an investigation of music in American literature. Walt Whitman was immersed in opera; Emily Dickinson was steeped in the hymnbook; Zora Neale Hurston in folksong; Amiri Baraka in the blues and bebop;John Cage in silence. We will explore how poetic music and ‘music’ diverge, but also look at the ways in which music and poetry have fed and inspired each other.