Sunday, September 09, 2012

Literary courses online: Modern & Contemporary American Poetry + Fantasy & Science Fiction

Literary courses online: Earlier this year, the online eduction platform Coursera launched. In partnership with several US universities, Coursera offers free online courses in the fields of Computer Science, Medicine, Biology, Finance and Information, but also in Humanities and Social Science. The current course program also includes 2 literary courses:

Starting Now: Modern & Contemporary American Poetry
In September, the literary course "Modern & Contemporary American Poetry (ModPo)" by Al Filreis will start. This course is a fast-paced introduction to modern and contemporary U.S. poetry, from Dickinson and Whitman to the present. Participants (who need no prior experience with poetry) will learn how to read poems that are supposedly "difficult."

Starting date: September 10: "As Sunday night September 9 becomes Monday September 10, at midnight here in the eastern U.S., the ModPo site will open to everyone who has enrolled in the 10-week course. The course begins with poems by Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman."

To read more about it and to enroll, visit the ModPo course page. As sneak-peak, Al Filreis "leaked" a 20-minute video introduction to the course: Modpo-intro-video. There also is an ongoing poetry podcast series: PoemTalk. There also is a @ModPoPenn twitter feed with extra links.

Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World
There currently is another litarary course running at Coursera: "Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World" by Eric Rabkin. The course started in July, but you can still enroll and follolw the video lectures from the start to now. Here's a bit more: "We understand the world — and our selves — through stories. Then some of those hopes and fears become the world. This course will explore Fantasy in general and Science Fiction in specific both as art and as insights into ourselves and our world."


  1. Online Course nice blog information i really want join the literary course for own passion

  2. I'm already signed up and eager to get started.

  3. The ModPo course also has a group on Facebook where over 2,000 of us have been chatting and sharing our love for poetry.

  4. Whipped through the full week's videos today and now I want to watch them all again. What an amazing opportunity!

  5. Muir Dragonne, thanks for the facebook link, i just requested a group invite. I watched the 1st + 2nd video today, so interesting and inspiring. great idea to not lecture in the videos, but have a poetry roundtable.