English N130A

American Literature: Before 1800

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Session Course Areas
1 Summer 2011 Tamarkin, Elisa
Tamarkin, Elisa
MTuTh 2-4P Note new room: 20 Barrows

Other Readings and Media

Norton Anthology of Literature, ed. Nina Baym; Brown, William Hill: The Power of Sympathy; Foster, Hannah: The Coquette; Brown, Charles Brockden: Wieland, ed. Jay Fliegelman


This course provides a survey of English-language American literature to 1800.  We will explore a wide range of texts from narratives of discovery and exploration through the literature of the American Revolution and the formations of an early national culture.  Topics to be discussed include:  the role of Puritanism in American society, ethnic difference and the experience of the frontier, evangelism and secularism, the social makings of the new republic, the rise of the novel in America, and the literary place of women and slaves.  Readings will also look closely at the language of rights and representation within a revolutionary culture that staged encounters between neoclassical models and romantic sensibilities and between a will to independence and a respect for history.  Authors will include William Bradford, John Winthop, Anne Bradstreet, Mary Rowlandson, Cotton Mather, Samuel Sewell, Jonathan Edwards, Benjamin Franklin, Phillis Wheatley, Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, Olaudah Equiano, Royall Tyler, Susanna Rowson, Hannah Foster, and Charles Brockden Brown.

Note that this course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.

This course is taught in Session A, from May 23 to July 1.

Back to Semester List