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Approaches to Teaching Pope's Poetry

Editor(s): Wallace Jackson, R. Paul Yoder

Pages: xi & 207 pp.
Published: 1993
ISBN: 9780873527163 (paperback)
ISBN: 9780873527156 (cloth)

"These are solid essays which make use of past scholarship, personal experience, and a few new literary approaches.... Essentially, the book offers a compendium of what competent and conscientious teachers might hope their students would absorb or master."

"I have already stolen from Donna Landry's hints for teaching The Rape of the Lock and Epistle to a Lady in conjunction with Swift, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, and Ann Yearsley; from Brian McCrea on An Essay on Man and 'nature' in advertising; from Howard Weinbrot on putting the Arbuthnot back in Arbuthnot, both contextually and dialogically; and I am planning other larcenies."
Studies in English Literature

Pope's poetry, the editors of this collection suggest, " index to social criticism, to enlightened religious belief, to witty and vivacious writing, and to the bearing of much of the Western literary tradition on the eighteenth-century mind." Approaches to Teaching Pope's Poetry strives to make Pope's genius and versatility shine in the classroom.

Like other books in the MLA's Approaches to Teaching World Literature series, this one is divided into two parts. The first part, "Materials," features a survey of useful reference materials as well as recommendations on available editions and anthologies. The essays in the second part, "Approaches," discuss Pope's wit and use of satire, his debt to Horace, and his relationship with the Scriblerians; present Pope's poetry alongside verse and parodies by his contemporaries; and share strategies for teaching individual poems in a variety of courses. Several essays discuss Pope's influence on the English Romantics, especially Byron and Wordsworth.

Table of Contents

Approaches to Teaching Pope's Poetry

R. Paul Yoder

A Course Survey
Editions and Anthologies
Aims and Issues
A Bibliographic Essay
Reserve Books
Critical Studies


Backgrounds: Formal, Theoretical, Literary

Wit, Rhyme, and Couplet: Style as Content in Pope's Art
David B. Morris

Alexander Pope: Ideas of Order and the Sense of Form
Martin C. Battestin

Imitating Pope
Deborah Baker Wyrick

Autobiographical Reflections on Teaching Pope Critically
G. S. Rousseau

Teaching Pope Today: Satire, Resistance, Theory
Fredric V. Bogel

Don't Touch Me! Pope as Pharmakeus
J. Douglas Canfield

Pope and Imagination
David Fairer

Pope and the Scriblerians
Oliver W. Ferguson

The Horatian View of the Poet
M. Elaine Dolan Brown

Approaching the Poetry: A Synoptic Essay

Teaching Pope with a View to the Whole
Wallace Jackson

Teaching Specific Poems

Windsor-Forest in Historical Context
Charles H. Hinnant

Neoclassical Aesthetics and An Essay on Criticism
Peter Walmsley

What the Sylphs Do: Studying The Rape of the Lock
John Sitter

Reading the Rape and To a Lady with Texts by Swift, Wortley Montagu, and Yearsley
Donna Landry

"La Nouvelle Eloisa": Pope outside the Period
Anne Williams

Timon's Villa Revisited: Pope's Architectural Criticism in the Epistle to Burlington
Douglas Murray

Pope, Martha Blount, and the Epistle to a Lady
Rachel Ann Miller

Pope's Arbuthnot
Howard Weinbrot

Horace in Modern Dress
Peter J. Schakel

"Teach the Aphorisms": An Essay on Man, Madison Avenue, and "Nature"
Brian McCrea

The Dunciad and Smart Students: Learning the Importance of Dunces
Deborah J. Knuth

Works Cited

Index of Names

Index of Works by Pope

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