English 24

Freshman Seminar: David Copperfield

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
4 Fall 2011 Tracy, Robert
Tracy, Robert
M 3-5 (9/12 - 10/31 only) Room L20 of Unit II (2650 Haste St.)


In David Copperfield (1849-50), Charles Dickens writes a novel about a novelist named David Copperfield who writes a novel about Charles Dickens--for many of David's adventures and ordeals mirror Dickens's own experiences that prepared him to be a novelist. In the novel he called "his favorite child" Dickens examines his own right--and David's--to be considered "the hero of his own life." The novel explores the role of emotional pain in the development of a novelist, while at the same time surrounding David with some of the comically grotesque characters that peopled Dickens's imagination. We will be examining David Copperfield as a confessional novel, as a success story, as a major English novel, and as popular entertainment.

David Copperfield was originally published as a twenty-part serial and we will read it serially, adjusting the text to fit our eight-week schedule. I ask you to read chapters 1-9 for our first meeting. Please try not to read ahead of assignment for subsequent meetings.

This class will start on September 12 and end on October 31.

This 1-unit course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the English major.

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