Scansion 101

This video explains how to scan and diagram a poem or other work of literature for meter and line length and identifies the metrical description of lines from Richard III and The Song of Hiawatha. What are the different names for the patterns in language? Why should we care about scanning poetry? What’s Iambic Pentameter, anyway?

FormPoem
LanguageEnglish Language
Literary FormsPoetry

Transcript

00:18

course we look for rhythm in the poems were forced

00:21

to read for our high school english class Well this

00:24

is where the technique known as transient comes in Scansion

00:27

involves scanning up home for meter or the number

00:31

of crinoline and rhythm or the pattern of stressed and

00:36

un stressed syllables in a line and then diagramming the

00:41

whole thing out with the help of a couple of

00:42

symbols Oh and when we talk about feed we're not [Man talking on stage and foot appears]

00:47

talking about the east smelling kind but rather the number

00:50

of times a pattern of two or more accented or

00:53

unaccented syllables occurs in a line Problem is there are

00:58

different kinds of feet no not different kinds of stench [Peoples feet appear]

01:01

but different patterns of accented or anak scented syllables in

01:05

poetry let's go over the common years we're likely to

01:09

encounter in a year old high school english class is

01:13

there's iambic meter in an A pest iq meter which

01:18

are collectively known as rising meters because the pattern moves

01:22

from unstrung est too stressed scylla Voice there's a tro

01:27

chaotic meter and dak tillich meter which are collectively known

01:31

as falling meters Because the pattern moves from stressed toe

01:35

unstrung est syllables spon dayak meter contains on ly stressed

01:40

syllables and pure iq meter contains on ly unstrung est

01:44

syllables These two meters air used to break up homes

01:47

rhythm rather than to created entire poem because a poem [Selection of meters appear]

01:50

containing only stressed or on lian stressed syllables well would

01:53

be really really boring Now that we've gone over common

01:56

poetic meters let's hit the names for line length Align

02:02

with one foot is called a manama eater a line

02:04

with two feet a demeter a line with three feet

02:08

Trim it er and yada yada yada And so when

02:10

you get the idea to get the name of a

02:13

poems metrical description we just come by the name of

02:17

the meter with the name of the line later Okay

02:22

now we've gone through all the vocabulary and there's a [Man speaking in class]

02:24

lot of years in there let's scan a couple of

02:25

things and see how we do one quick note it's

02:28

possible to use can shin on literature other than poetry

02:32

Take these lines from shakespeare's play richard the third for [Shakespear appears on stage]

02:34

example now is the winter of our discontent made glorious

02:39

summer by this sun of york and all the clouds

02:42

that lowered upon our house in the deep bosom of

02:46

the ocean buried art well these four lines are written

02:49

in iambic meter pattern where one unstrapped syllable is followed

02:53

by one stressed syllable There are five feet in each

02:56

of these lines here making them pentameter sze we combine

03:01

the name of the meter with the name of the

03:02

line length to get the metrical description iambic pentameter Let's [Meter and Line Length columns appear]

03:07

look at some lines from henry wadsworth longfellow's the song

03:11

of hiawatha should you ask me whence these stories whence

03:15

these legends and traditions with the odors of the forest

03:18

with the dew and damp of meadows Well these four

03:21

lines are written intro cake meter the pattern where one

03:24

stressed syllable is followed by one unstrung syllable There are

03:28

four feet in each of these lines making them te

03:31

transmitters We combine the name of the meter with the

03:34

name of the line length to get the metrical description

03:37

Tro cake Ted parameter Alright now that we've been through

03:41

the common meters and the names of the line lengths

03:44

and how this whole skansen thing works well let's answer

03:46

a big question Why Why Why should we care about

03:49

scanning poetry Why can't we just kick back with a

03:51

shirley temple Read the darn poem and enjoy well forget [Man drinking on a sun lounger]

03:55

for the moment that we need to know how to

03:56

scan a poem in order Ace high school english scan

03:59

shin is a tool we can use You better understand

04:01

poetry plays music or other rhythmic pieces of literature Not

04:06

only does diagramming the rhythm and meter of a poem

04:08

Show us how a piece should be read aloud But

04:11

also we get a peek into the poet's brain If [Poets head opens and brain pops out]

04:13

the syllables and words here she wanted to emphasize that

04:17

peeking into the brand thing is really cool Or it