English 190

Research Seminar: Charles Darwin and George Eliot


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
2 Spring 2014 Duncan, Ian
MW 4-5:30 206 Wheeler

Book List

Darwin, Charles: On the Origin of Species; Darwin, Charles: The Descent of Man; Eliot, George: Daniel Deronda; Eliot, George: Middlemarch; Eliot, George: The Mill on the Floss

Other Readings and Media

Other readings will be made available (via pdf files or web links) on the course b-Space site.

Description

George Eliot was the Victorian novelist most attuned to contemporary developments in the natural and human sciences. We will read three of her major novels -- The Mill on the Floss, Middlemarch, and Daniel Deronda -- in relation to nineteenth-century discoveries and debates in evolutionary and cell biology, comparative mythology and anthropology, and the philosophy of science more generally. Alongside the novels, and selections from Eliot's other writings (her translations and essays), we will read Charles Darwin's major works, On the Origin of Species and The Descent of Man, which he wrote for a general public as well as for  specialists, and scientific writings by William Whewell, Herbert Spencer, G. H. Lewes, T. H. Huxley, John Tyndall, F. Max Müller, and E. B. Tylor.

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