Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2023
Units: 5
Hours: 5 lecture per week (60 total per quarter)
Advisory: Demonstrated proficiency in English by placement via multiple measures OR through an equivalent placement process OR completion of ESLL 125 & ESLL 249.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Area I: Humanities
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Evaluate and compare ways communities have used poetry create space, sustain community, challenge stereotypes, preserve cultural knowledge, and respond to injustice
  • compose poems that emulate elements of poetry used by selected authors of study


Contemporary local poets guest lecture and engage in conversation with students about process, poetics, and approach to publishing. Emphasis on ways poetry has historically created community to honor and maintain cultural knowledge and to complicate single narratives. Special emphasis on integrated reading and writing for literary analysis, including reflective and creative stylistic emulation of poets studied. Focus on sharing new work through organizing community reading and publishing class anthology.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Define community in various contexts reflected in contemporary literature
  2. Evaluate and compare ways communities have used poetry create space, sustain community, challenge stereotypes, preserve cultural knowledge, and respond to injustice
  3. Interpret contemporary poetry within structure of relevant racial, ethnic, gender, class, aesthetic approach, linguistic, and cultural contexts
  4. Recognize and compare poetic forms and aesthetic features from diverse cultures and, especially, contemporary, local poets
  5. Analyze and interpret use of poetic elements, such as diction, rhyme, meter, form, figurative language, imagery, assonance, consonance, internal rhyme, etc., and the impact the use of such devices have on the reader
  6. Compose poems that emulate elements of poetry used by selected authors of study
  7. Engage in conversation with selected, local poets of study on process and content
  8. Critique student poetry in workshop setting
  9. Plan, organize, and execute a community reading of writing done throughout the quarter

Course Content

  1. Examples of community in various contexts in contemporary literature, such as:
    1. Citizenship and legal status (e.g., undocumented, incarcerated state, refugee status)
    2. Ethnicity
    3. Religion
    4. Gender
    5. Sexual orientation
    6. Geographical location/place
    7. Labor conditions
    8. Linguistic
    9. Physical limitations
  2. Representation of community-building movements through poetry, such as:
    1. Harlem Renaissance
    2. Nuyorican Cafe
    3. Nicaraguan poets
    4. Native American Renaissance and contemporary indigenous poetry, including Pacific Island indigenous communities
    5. Poetry from prison and internment camps
    6. Poetry from social movements (e.g., labor movements, LGBTQ)
    7. Poetry and social media platforms
  3. Selected contemporary poetry as found in any of the following:
    1. Contemporary poetry chap books
    2. Contemporary poetry anthologies
    3. Contemporary poetry collections
    4. Interviews with contemporary poets
  4. Multicultural poetic forms, such as:
    1. Comparative poetic forms and aesthetic features in contemporary poetry
    2. Ghazal
    3. Sonnet
    4. Haiku, tanka, renga, hokku
    5. Blues, jazz poetry, hip hop, spoken word
    6. Corridos
    7. Classical odes, Latin American ode
    8. Dramatic dialogue
    9. Visual and experimental poetry
    10. Anti-poetry
    11. Free-verse
  5. Relevant terminologies and analytic techniques, such as:
    1. Connotative, denotative meaning and wordplay
    2. Structure of ideas, references, images, use of repetition, dialogue
    3. Rhythm of lines, meter, and attention to performance of poetry
    4. Assonance, consonance, and use of internal rhyme to convey tone or emotion in poetry
    5. Image, symbolic, and figurative language connected to particular themes
  6. Creative emulation of selected poetry
    1. Compose poems that emulate form (e.g., ghazal, pantoum, imagist, blues, free verse, etc.)
    2. Compose poems that use particular devices specific to selected poetry (e.g., linguistic codes, dialogue, repetition, creative use of titles, experimental punctuation, line breaks, etc.)
    3. Compose poems that emulate subject matter or thematic considerations of selected poetry
  7. Guest craft talks and lectures with selected, local poets
    1. Guest poets discuss poetics, process, and craft with student
  8. Critique student poetry in workshop setting
    1. Analysis of peer writing
    2. Critical feedback
    3. Mutual sense of purpose
    4. Awareness of process
  9. Revision strategies to develop voice
    1. Editing and self-editing skills
  10. Community reading and class publication of work
    1. Outreach and marketing
    2. Find a venue, location for reading
    3. Design a program
    4. Skills for performing poetry in public
    5. Outreach to guest poets or featured readers
    6. Decision-making about how to anthologize and publish class work (e.g., online journals, blogs, website, zines, chapbooks, etc.)

Lab Content

Not applicable.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. When taught on campus, no special facility or equipment needed.
2. When taught virtually, ongoing access to a computer with LMS-compatible software and internet browser.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

4-5 critical analysis responses of 1-2 pages each to assigned published writings
Production of written descriptions of process
Production of written critiques of student work
Engaged discussion with visiting poets
Completion of 5-7 original poems
Participation in writing workshop discussions and activities
Revisions of original work based on workshop and professor feedback
In-class performance of poetry to practice reading poetry in a public setting
Quality of original work
Organization of community reading
Personal or communal publication of poems and other written pieces created in response to texts studies

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Independent and collaborative reading/viewing/listening of the assigned texts
Instructor-guided and collaborative interpretation and analysis
Student-led discussions and presentations
E-portfolios/Blogs/Wiki for sharing student works in progress, providing feedback, and to demonstrate mastery, comprehension, application, and synthesis of a given set of concepts
Guest lectures by visiting poets
View or attend community-based poetry readings
Participate in writing workshop sessions to provide and receive feedback on poems

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Antigua, Dianelly. Ugly Music. 2019.

Asghar, Fatima. If They Come For Us. 2018.

Olivarez, Jose. Citizen Illegal. 2018.

Borjas, Sara. Heart Like a Window, Mouth Like a Cliff. 2019.

Cagney, James. Black Steel Magnolias in the Hour of Chaos Theory. 2021.

Chang, Victoria. Obit. 2020.

Chavez, Felica Rose. The Anti-Racist Writing Workshop: How to Decolonize the Creative Writing Classroom. 2021.

Chazaro, Alan. Notes from the Span of the Bay Bridge. 2021.

Chazaro, Alan. Piñata Theory. 2020.

Chazaro, Alan. This is Not A Frank Ocean Cover Album. 2019.

Eisen-Martin, Tongo. Heaven Is All Goodbyes. 2017.

Escamilla, Rachelle. Imaginary Animal, 2nd ed.. 2022.

García, Àngel. Teeth Never Sleep. 2018.

Matthews, Thea. Unearth [the flowers]. 2020.

Reyes, Barbara Jane. Letters to a Brown Girl. 2020.

Rich, Adrienne. What Is Found There: Notebooks on Poetry and Politics. 1993.

Rosada, Michelle Brittan. Why Can't it Be Tenderness. 2018.

Sok, Monica. A Nail the Evening Hangs On. 2020.

Sapigao, Janice. Like a Solid to a Shadow. 2022.

Sapigao, Janice. microchips for millions. 2016.

Subia, Jarvis. Hello Joy. 2022.

Torres, Michael. An Incomplete List of Names. 2020.

Valdez, Norma Liliana. Preparing the Body. 2020.

Although the Rich text is older than five years, it remains an important book in the field of poetry, especially in the context of poetry communities and the power of organizing around poetry. Although one of the Sapigao texts is older than five years, it remains an important text for community-based poetry in the Bay Area, as it discusses issues related specifically to living in this area and the poet is the current Poet Laureate of Santa Clara County.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Reading essays, poetry, prose, and interviews with featured writers
  2. Questions for analysis and discussion to prepare for author visits
  3. Written analysis of poems
  4. Individual and group annotations for poem explication
  5. Individual and group presentation of significant historical, social, and/or political events, periods, movements relevant to poems studied
  6. Written, original work: poems that emulate poets studied
  7. Stylistic imitations of poems studied
  8. Participation in public reading of poetry: student-generated poems and poems studied
  9. Reflections on writing process and poetics