Attuning ourselves to tunes

Nowell Smith, David ORCID: (2023) Attuning ourselves to tunes. English, 71 (275). 295–303. ISSN 0013-8215

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The below is a transcript (with a small number of footnotes added) for an inaugural lecture given at the University of East Anglia on 28 November 2022. The lecture sought to answer the following questions: why read poems? Why study poetry? This talk argues that poetry constitutes language in its most condensed, but also most enlarged, form: when we read poems, we enliven ourselves to the expressive power of language as a whole, we attune ourselves to the language’s tunes. Through discussions of poems from across history, the talk will explore the different ways that poems ‘make sense’: that is, generate senses and sensations. In particular, the talk will reflect on the sense of tunes and the tunefulness of sense. A recording of the lecture and ensuing Q&A can be found at

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: literature and literary theory ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1200/1208
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Research Groups > Legible / Visible
Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Research Groups > Modern and Contemporary Writing Research Group
Related URLs:
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2023 10:30
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 18:16
DOI: 10.1093/english/efad003


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