This course will introduce students to British Romanticism, a literary and artistic movement of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Students will examine literary and artistic theories and key concepts of the Romantic period, including its attention to emotion and intuition rather than Enlightenment rationality, its privileging of nature, and the political influence of the French Revolution of 1789. We will also problematize the idea of a coherent Romanticism and consider the prominence of other issues such as slavery and the role of women. In doing so, we will examine voices often excluded from the Romantic canon, such as those of women poets.
Readings will include a selection of poetry, extracts from longer works of nonfiction, and one full-length novel, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Poets will include William Blake, Lord Byron, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, John Keats, Hannah More, Amelia Opie, Mary Robinson, Anna Seward, Percy Bysshe Shelley, and William Wordsworth. All primary reading materials will be available in a course reader for purchase, apart from Pride and Prejudice, which will be available for purchase from the bookshop. Key further reading material will be placed on reserve at the library.
Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen, Penguin Classics, ISBN 978-0141439518
Students will develop their analytical and argumentative skills through the examination of literary texts. They will become familiar with the tenets of British Romanticism but will also learn contemporary critical efforts to rethink and re-theorize Romanticism to reflect a greater variety of artists in the period.
There will be three contact hours per week, in a three-hour session on Tuesday from 1:30-4:20 pm. Students are expected to complete the week’s readings beforehand. The first hour will run from 1:30 to 2:20 pm and will feature a formal lecture on the historical and critical context of the readings for that week. The next two hours will run from 2:30 to 4:20 pm, with a ten-minute break in the middle. This second session will focus on class discussions of the reading.
Class Participation, Attendance, and Short Reading Quizzes – 15 percent
Term Paper 1 – 30 percent
Term Paper 2 – 40 percent
In-Class Essay/Exam – 15 percent