By Alicia Hobson
The Literature and Languages Department has been working extra hard to offer their students many new opportunities to tailor their education to individual interests. For the Spring 2021 semester, Dr. Holly Karapetkova, Arlington’s current Poet Laureate has designed a new course, EN228 The Experience of Poetry: Poetry and Spirituality. You may have seen it advertised on our social media pages! In this course, she will guide her students through an introduction to the formal, stylistic, and thematic elements of poetry. This new year will be incredible for many students, and we are so excited to see everyone returning to classes, however you may choose. The only requirement you’ll need for this LT1 core course is EN102. Register promptly and secure your seat!
For many of us who are new to poetry, its power can seem beyond our reach. At least that’s how I felt until I learned how to navigate the emotion in a poem. See, poetry is not just words structured a certain way on a page. Poetry is a being of sorts, and the words we read become its pulse. It can be happy and make us weep with joy, or it can shatter our minds with pain. Poetry, perhaps, has a bigger job than most literary texts we study because of those reasons. In poetry, we uncover many meanings and face harsh truths about the world it shares with us. Sometimes we even discover new things about ourselves. Learning to experience poetry opens doors into another’s world, and into our own.
Along with the experience of reading poetry, Dr. Karapetkova will help students understand the connection between poetry, reflection, and spirituality. Students will learn how to define poetry, discover new aspects of spirituality, and investigate why poetry and spirituality have been such natural partners across diverse time periods, locations, and faith traditions. We are so proud to have Dr. Karapetkova teaching this class and sharing her specialty with our students!