small group work on Ian Hamilton Finlay

A fellow poet has written of Finlay’s works on paper the following: “The point is to give the reader a shock not of recognition but of cognition, which is much harder and much more valuable.” With this in mind, please work with your group members to come up with a careful analysis of what your assigned poem is about and/or what’s at stake in your assigned poem. Consider what sorts of conventions of poetry Finlay is trying to disrupt and consider how he is trying to expand our sense of what poetry is or what poetry could be.

GROUP 1: Wave/rock (check out some different iterations of the poem using Google images)

GROUP 2: Fisherman’s cross

GROUP 3: A Patch for a RipTide: Sail

GROUP 4: Sales/Waves

GROUP 5: Star/Steer

GROUP 6: You/Me/Us (and also this version)

literary research overview


  1. What is the difference between a primary source and a secondary source? Should a research paper include primary sources, secondary sources, or both?
  2. What is an example of a nonacademic source and what do you use these nonacademic sources for?
  3. What is the difference between a library catalog and a database? Name some databases relevant to our class.
  4. What is the difference between Chinook and Prospector and Interlibrary Loan
  5. What is the difference between subject word searching and keyword searching
  6. What does “peer reviewed article” mean and why do you want to include these sources in your papers?
  7. Which literature-related databases are full text? What IS “full text”? Which database is the most complete and extensive for doing literary research?
  8. When you’re doing an advanced search, what function does the Boolean operator “and” serve?
  9. When you’re doing an advanced search, what function does the Boolean operator “or” serve?
  10. When you’re doing an advanced search, what function does the Boolean operator “not” serve?
  11. When you’re doing an advanced search, what function does the Boolean operator “*” or “?” serve?
  12. When evaluating a source for a research project, what aspects of the source should you consider?
  13. What do you need to do to conduct research on your computer at home/off-campus?



in-class small group work on Futurism

Give the class a reading or an interpretation of your assigned Futurist work; if possible, tie your reading back to in-class lectures on Futurism. Do whatever you can to avoid saying “I don’t know” and, as always, make sure all your claims about the text are supported by evidence. Finally, once again, keep in mind you can use this as the basis for your discussion forum post that’s due on Tuesday.

Group 1: Après la Marne

Group 2: Correction of Proofs + Desires in Speed

Group 3: Canguillo’s “Detonation” and Marinetti’s “A Landscape Heard”

Group 4: Marinetti’s “They Are Coming”

Group 5: Depero’s “Colors”

Group 6: (focus on explaining the key points and think through their motivation for writing this) Marinetti’s “Variety Theatre Manifesto”

more excerpts from Futurist manifestos

From The Futurist Cinema, by F.T. Marinetti, Bruno Corra, Emilio Settimelli, Arnaldo Ginna, Giacomo Balla, and Remo Chiti, November 15, 1916:

Dramatized states of mind on film.
Filmed dramas of objects.
Filmed words-in-freedom in movement (synoptic tables of Iyric values—dramas of humanized or animated letters—orthographic dramas—typographical dramas—geometric dramas—numeric sensibility, etc.).

Painting + sculpture + plastic dynamism + words-in-freedom + composed noises [intonarumori] + architecture + synthetic theatre = Futurist cinema.

From Destruction of Syntax—Imagination without Strings—Words-in-Freedom, by F.T. Marinetti June 15, 1913:

[on words in freedom] He will begin by brutally destroying the syntax of his speech…Punctuation and the right adjectives will mean nothing to him. He will despise subtleties and nuances of language. Breathlessly he will assault your nerves with visual, auditory, olfactory sensations, just as they come to him. The rush of steam-emotion will burst the sentence’s steampipe, the valves of punctuation, and the adjectival clamp. Fistfuls of essential words in no conventional order.

[on typographical revolution] I initiate a typographical revolution aimed at the bestial, nauseating idea of the book of passéist and D’Annunzian verse, on seventeenth-century handmade paper bordered with helmets, Minervas, Apollos, elaborate red initials, vegetables, mythological missal ribbons, epigraphs, and roman numerals. The book must be the Futurist expression of our Futurist thought. Not only that. My revolution is aimed at the so-called typographical harmony of the page, which is contrary to the flux and reflux, the leaps and bursts of style that run through the page. On the same page, therefore, we will use three or four colors of ink, or even twenty different typefaces if necessary. For example: italics for a series of similar or swift sensations, boldface for the violent onomatopoeias, and so on. With this typographical revolution and this multicolored variety in the letters I mean to redouble the expressive force of words…I combat Mallarmé’s static ideal with this typographical revolution that allows me to impress on the words (already free, dynamic, and torpedo-like) every velocity of the stars, the clouds, aeroplanes, trains, waves, explosives, globules of seafoam, molecules, and atoms.