Jay Parini

D. E. Axinn Professor of English and Creative Writing

 work(802) 443-5042
 Fall Term: Tuesday and Thursday 12:00 - 1:30, and 4:30-6:00, and by appointment
 Axinn Center at Starr Library 203


Singing in Time. Dundee (Scotland): J.W.B. Laing, 1972.  (poems)

Theodore Roethke:  An American Romantic. Amherst, MA:  University of Massachusetts Press, 1979. (criticism)

The Love Run. Atlantic-Little, Brown, 1980. (novel)

Anthracite Country. New York: Random House, 1982. (poems)

The Patch Boys. New York: Henry Holt, 1986. (novel)

An Invitation to Poetry. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1987. (textbook)

Town Life. New York:  Henry Holt, 1988. (poems)

The Last Station. New York: Henry Holt, 1990. (novel)

Bay of Arrows. New York:  Henry Holt, 1992. (novel)

Columbia History of American Poetry, editor, with Brett Millier.  New York:  Columbia University Press, 1994.

Columbia Anthology of American Poetry (1995), editor.  New York:  Columbia University Press, 1995.

John Steinbeck:  A Biography. New York:  Henry Holt, 1995.

Gore Vidal: Writer Against the Grain, editor.  New York:  Columbia University Press, 1996. (criticism)

Benjamin's Crossing. New York:  Henry Holt, 1996. (novel)

Some Necessary Angels: Essays on Literature and Politics. New York:  Columbia University Press,, 1997. (criticism)

Beyond "The Godfather" : Italian American Writers on the Real Italian American Experience, editor, with A. Kenneth Ciongoli.  Hanover, N.H.: University Press of New England, 1997.

House of Days. New York:  Henry Holt, 1998. (poems)

The Norton Book of American Autobiography, editor.  New York:  W.W. Norton, 1998.

Robert Frost: A Life. New York:  Henry Holt, 1999.

The Apprentice Lover. New York:  HarperCollins, 2002. (novel)

Passage to Liberty: The Story of Italian Immigration and the Rebirth of America, with A. Kenneth Ciongoli.  New York:  Random House, 1992.

The Oxford Encyclopedia of American Literature (2004) – four volumes, editor.  New York:  Oxford University Press, 2004.

World Writers in English, editor. New York:  Scribner, 2004.

One Matchless Time: A Life of William Faulkner. New York:  HarperCollins, 2004.

The Art of Teaching. New York:  Oxford University Press, 2005.

The Art of Subtraction: New and Selected Poems. New York:  Braziller, 2005.

The Wadsworth Anthology of Poetry, editor.  Boston:  Wadsworth, 2005.

Why Poetry Matters. New Haven, CT:  Yale  University Press, 2008. (criticism)

Promised Land: Thirteen Books that Changed America. New York:  Doubleday, 2008. (criticism)

Last Steps:  Late Writings of Leo Tolstoy, editor.  London and New York:  Penguin, 2009.




Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

CRWR 0175 - Structure of Poetry      

The Structure of Poetry
This course is a workshop for beginning students in the field of creative writing. Students will read a selection of poems each week and write their own poems, producing a portfolio of their work at the end of the term. There will be an emphasis on revision. Students will be introduced to a range of forms as well, including prose poems, epistles, the tanka, the long poem, and the sonnet. ART

Spring 2017

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CRWR 0375 - Advanced Poetry Workshop      

Advanced Poetry Workshop: The Walk of a Poem
As Lyn Hejinian writes, “Language makes tracks.” Poets from Chaucer to Whitman to O’Hara have used walking as a poetic method, thematic subject, narrative device, and pedestrian act. The walk is literal and imaginary, metrical and meandering; it traverses urban grids and bucolic landscapes, junctions of space, time, and lexis. In this workshop we will read the topographies of poems, focusing on lyrical cities from Paris to Harlem, Thoreauvian ambles through woods and field, and other literary wanderings and linguistic itinerancies, in order to examine how language gets made and mirrored in the act of moving through place. Students will also set out on walks through the local landscape as they produce their own work. Students will address crucial questions and challenges focused on the craft of poetry through rigorous readings, in-class writing exercises, critical discussions, collaborations, and the development of a portfolio of writing, including drafts and revisions. By the end of the course, students will have engaged deeply with the practice of poetry, established a writing discipline, honed their skills, generated new work, explored by foot, and extended their sense of the possibilities of a poem. (Approval required; please apply online at http://www.middlebury.edu/academics/enam/resources/forms ) ART

Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2018, Fall 2019

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CRWR 0560 - Special Project: Writing      

Special Project: Creative Writing
Approval Required.

Fall 2015, Winter 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020

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CRWR 0701 - Senior Thesis:Creative Writing      

Senior Thesis: Creative Writing
Discussions, workshops, tutorials for those undertaking one-term projects in the writing of fiction, poetry, or creative nonfiction.

Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020

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ENAM 0312 - Modern Poetry      

Modern Poetry
This course will examine the nature and achievement of the major modern poets of Britain and America during the modern period, beginning with the origins of poetic modernism in the work of Gerard Manley Hopkins, Emily Dickinson, and Walt Whitman. The central figures to be studied are William Butler Yeats, T.S. Eliot, Robert Frost, Wallace Stevens, and W.H. Auden. The course will conclude with a look at some after-echoes of modernism in the work of Elizabeth Bishop and others. Two papers, one exam, with occasional oral presentations in class 3 hrs. lect./disc. LIT

Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2019

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ENAM 0316 - Poetry and Spiritual Tradition      

Poetry and the Spiritual Tradition
In this course we will examine the long and intimate connection between poetry and spirituality, looking especially at the influence of Christian thinking on such English and American poets as John Donne, George Herbert, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and T.S. Eliot. The course will begin with a study of the King James Version of the Book of Psalms, which deeply affected later British and American poetry. We will also read early Taoist and Islamic poets, including Lao Tse and Rumi. The course will conclude with a look at the work of several contemporary poets: Charles Wright, Louis Glück, and Mary Oliver. CMP LIT PHL

Fall 2016, Fall 2018

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ENAM 0442 - Religious Poetry      

Batter My Heart: Religious Poetry from Donne to Mary Oliver
In this seminar we will look closely at some of the major religious poets (broadly defined to include a variety of traditions) in the course of English and American poetry from the 17th century writers John Donne and George Herbert to the contemporary American poet Mary Oliver. Major figures will look at include Donne, Herbert, Wordsworth, Hopkins, Dickinson, T. S. Eliot, W.H. Auden, Charles Wright, and Mary Oliver. There will be prose selections from various poets and spiritual writers, including Emerson. LIT PHL

Fall 2015, Fall 2019

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ENAM 0500 - Special Project: Lit      

Special Project: Literature
Approval Required.

Fall 2015, Winter 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020

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ENAM 0700 - Senior Thesis:Critical Writing      

Senior Thesis: Critical Writing
Individual guidance and seminar (discussions, workshops, tutorials) for those undertaking one-term projects in literary criticism or analysis. All critical thesis writers also take the Senior Thesis Workshop (ENAM 700Z) in either Fall or Spring Term.

Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020

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Department of English & American Literatures

Axinn Center at Starr Library
15 Old Chapel Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753