Category Archives: Browning (Robert)

Browning Describes Incel’s Misogyny

The Toronto van murderer claims to have been an “incel” (involuntary celibate) who acted out his rage against women. He resembles the creepy speaker in Robert Browning’s “Porphyria’s Lover.”

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Inducting Students into an Honor Society

Our English Department’s Sigma Tau Delta induction ceremony included passages from Willa Cather, Shakespeare, and Emily Dickinson.

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Trump as Browning’s Pied Piper

Charlie Pierce of “Esquire” makes good use of Robert Browning’s “Pied Piper of Hamelin” to describe Donald Trump’s con job. Then he imagines the tables turned and Trump as the deceitful major who stiffs his employee.

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The Sewanee Gentleman & Related Poems

As the son of a professor at the University of the South, I grew up hearing about “the Sewanee gentleman.” A recent exhibit on the Sewanee gentleman includes poems by Robert Browning and Rudyard Kipling, which were used to reenforce the concept.

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Derby Day: We Galloped All Three

It’s Derby Day so here’s a horse racing poem with galloping anapests (three-beat poetic feet, unstressed, unstressed, stressed). Unfortunately, two of the horses don’t make it to the finish line. At least the third horse is suitably rewarded. This 1834 Robert Browning poem is not based on an actual event, but it’s a lot of fun.

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A Poem for Every Playoff Team

Sports Saturday For the football games this weekend, I found a passage from a poem or passage from a poem that pertains to the name of each team. Enjoy. Atlanta Falcons vs. Green Bay Packers The high-flying Atlanta Falcons boast, among other things, the incomparable receiver Roddy White, who soars skyward to pull down passes. […]

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Real Men Play Football AND Read Poetry

Sports Saturday Professional football is a super violent sport and its 16-game season is a war of attrition. One never knows, from one week to the next, what team will have its Super Bowl hopes derailed by critical injuries. For a while this year, everyone was certain that the NFC would send either the New […]

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  • Literature is as vital to our lives as food and shelter. Stories and poems help us work through the challenges we face, from everyday irritations to loneliness, heartache, and death. Literature is meant to mix it up with life. This website explores how it does so.

    Please feel free to e-mail me [rrbates (at) smcm (dot) edu]. I would be honored to hear your thoughts and questions about literature.

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