The Shoe Shine Parlor Poems et al A Teacher's Guide by W.R. Rodriguez by W.R. Rodriguez - Read Online

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The Shoe Shine Parlor Poems et al A Teacher's Guide - W.R. Rodriguez

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Technology in the classroom and electronic publishing now make it possible for books of poetry by an individual author to be available at little cost for classroom use. The 2014 edition of the Teacher’s Guide has been prepared to supplement the appearance of the shoe shine parlor poems et al as an e-publication.

Preface to the 1986 Edition

If students read poetry at all, it is usually the poetry found in anthologies or textbooks. While both of these are valuable teaching resources, they are subject to several limitations: first, the editors and publishers are not always knowledgeable of the little magazines and small presses, which publish more contemporary poetry than do the commercial presses whose name poets are so often the ones anthologized while new and exciting voices go unnoticed; second, the selection process for composing a textbook must frequently concern itself with such mundane factors as the cost of reprint rights--Spenser collects no royalties! But the severest inherent limitation to anthologies and textbooks is their inability to present an author’s vision, to give an overall sense of the author’s theme, style, and personality. Thus student readers flit from one poem to the next, each poem having been composed by authors of differing visions, and contemporary poetry becomes an exciting muddle. Students may acquire from textbooks a sense of literary history or of genre, both of which are necessary for the study of literature in college, but perhaps the adolescent responds best to the individual message and personality of an author as expressed through narrative characterization or lyrical outcry. This response can best be encouraged through the reading of a single-authored book, not an anthology.

It is my hope that teachers will consider using books of poetry to supplement, not to replace, traditional anthologies and textbooks.