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Unit information: Poetry of the 1960s in 2021/22

Unit name Poetry of the 1960s
Unit code ENGL20032
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Wootten
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of English
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

On this unit, we shall examine English and American poetry of the 1960s, concentrating upon the major volumes of that decade. Each week we shall examine a different book of poetry. These will be drawn from across the range of different poetries that defined the poetry of the 1960s and which have continued to influence poetry written in the years since. Along with the opportunity to pay close attention to the works themselves, there will be the chance to read the poetry in the light of a variety of illuminating contexts, be they social, political, philosophical or biographical. We shall also look at the poetry of the sixties more widely, at poetic movements such as confessionalism, beat poetry, projective verse and The Movement, and at influential critical voices and anthologies.

Students will be given the opportunity to submit a draft or outline of their final, summative essay of up to 1,500 words and to receive feedback on this.

Intended Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will have:

(1) developed a detailed understanding of some of the most important volumes of English and American poetry of the 1960s;

(2) developed an ability to situate poetry within a range of relevant historical and intellectual contexts;

(3) demonstrated the ability to understand and evaluate a range of different poetics and critical positions;

(4) strengthened their skills in argumentation and academic writing.

Teaching Information

Teaching will involve asynchronous and synchronous elements, including group discussion, research and writing activities, and peer dialogue. Students are expected to engage with the reading and participate fully with the weekly tasks and topics. Learning will be further supported through the opportunity for individual consultation.

Assessment Information

  • 1 x 3000 word essay (100%) [ILOs 1-4]


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. ENGL20032).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.