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Book Title: The Norton Anthology of Poetry|
The author of the book: Margaret Ferguson
ISBN 13: 9780393979206
Edition: W. W. Norton & Company
Date of issue: December 7th 2004
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 7.56 MB
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Reader ratings: 6.7
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I am more familiar with earlier editions, and while Margy Ferguson* is an excellent and perceptive scholar-editor, she cannot repell the publisher's usual bowing to sell books. My riveting memory of such an event was in a freshman literature anthology, ground-breaking in its day. It included Tom Thumb, had an entire section of songs and the prosody of songs, and many other things, which because they were unique, I tended to teach.
Next edition, they were all cut. And I dumped the anthology. Evidently, all the freshman lit-comp teachers in the country were pretty used to doing what they did, could not use the wonderful innovations. You'd think frosh comp would be generally staffed by the younger and more flexible teachers, but perhaps when you include all the adjunct and experienced teachers who missed tenure, you have a group of fairly careful people unwilling to take risks.
Well, if that was the way it was fifteen years ago, think how that will be reinforced by the scrutiny of the classroom by those who think of it as a factory. Or by those who know nothing of teaching, like the US Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, who only taught for two years--gym. Your production line's doing WHAT? Song prosody? Where will the standardized test examine that?
*M Ferguson joined my SAA seminar on Shakepseare and Oral Culture in Seattle, and is a supporter of my latest, Parodies Lost, on Tom Weiskel, Harold Bloom's favorite young colleague at Yale in the early 70's. MF also knew Tom at Yale; and H Bloom wrote me, "I think of Tom every day. I still grieve him."
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