The Poetry of Conflict:


150 years of global war poetry

“My subject is War, and the pity of War. The Poetry is in the pity,” wrote the famous First World War poet Wilfred Owen. Does this apply to all war poetry? Through looking at the poetry written in response to different conflicts during the last 150 years, we will explore the diverse representations of war by the people who fought in them, the people who reported on them and the people who were affected by them. From the American Civil War (1861-1865) to the present day conflicts in the Middle East and the international impact of terrorism, we will ask how the literary legacies of these conflicts have moulded our views, enhanced our understanding, and stirred our emotions.

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Ten week course

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Al Jazeera Desert, Iraq, March 2006.
Photograph by Staff Sgt. Aaron Allmon [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.