English 250

Research Seminars: Religion and Poetry in Early Modern England


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Spring 2014 Marno, David
W 11-2 301 Wheeler

Book List

DiCesare, Mario: George Herbert and the Seventeenth-Century Religious Poets; Donne, John: The Complete English Poems; Hamlin, Hannibal: The Sidney Psalter; Herbert, George: The Complete Poems

Description

What does it mean to speak to God through a sonnet? Why would someone retell the story of the Biblical Fall in verse? Why rewrite the Psalms in rhyme royal? In this course, we’ll read sixteenth- and seventeenth-century religious poetry along with their source texts and contexts in order to answer such questions. We’ll keep a dual focus throughout: what makes religious poetry a fascinating object for study is precisely that it is both poetry and religion, that it reflects the irreverent creativity of poetry as well as the fidelity that early modern Christianity demands from its practitioners. In the strange cooperation of poetry and religion, both are often forced to show their unknown faces and hidden tendencies; our main goal in the course is to notice the moments when religious poetry tells us something new about poetic invention or religious belief. Authors include Petrarch, Thomas Wyatt, Anne Lock, Edmund Spenser, Philip and Mary Sidney, John Donne, George Herbert, Richard Crashaw, Henry Vaughan, Andrew Marvell, Thomas Traherne, and John Milton.

Texts: In addition to DiCesare, Smith's edition of Donne, Tobin's edition of Herbert, and Hamlin's edition of the Sidney psalms, materials will be available on BSpace. Note that if you own a copy of Shawcross' edition of Donne's complete poems, you won't need Smith.

This course satisfies the Group 2 (medieval through 16th century) or Group 3 (17th-18th century) requirement.

Other Recent Sections of This Course

spring, 2020

250/1

Research Seminar: Ways of Knowing, Ways of Representing in Eighteenth-Century English Fiction

250/2

Research Seminar: Black Cultures of Gender and Sexuality

250/3

Research Seminar: Critique of Capitalism, or Reading Marx Now

fall, 2019

250/1

Research Seminar: The English Department

250/2

Research Seminar: Transcendentalism

spring, 2019

250/1

Research Seminar: Philosophical Idealizations of Art and Modernist Practices

fall, 2018

250/3

Research Seminar: Textual Communities and the Modern

250/4

Research Seminar: Evolution and Literary Form, 1800-1900

spring, 2018

250/2

Research Seminar: Ways of Knowing, Ways of Representing in Eighteenth-Century English Fiction

250/3

Research Seminar: Milton and the English Civil War

250/4

Research Seminar: The Rhetoric of Technique

250/5

Research Seminar: Black Abstraction

fall, 2017

250/1

Research Seminar: Victorian Cultural Studies

250/2

Research Seminar: How to Write a Book

250/3

Research Seminar: Paranoid States: Empire and the Rise of the Surveillance State

250/4

Research Seminar: Gender, Sexuality, Modernism

spring, 2017

250/1

Research Seminar: Wordsworth and Coleridge in Collaboration

250/2

Research Seminar: Modernism in Poetry and in Art

250/3

Research Seminar: Idols and Ideology—Readings in Augustine, Milton, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Hobbes, Kant, Marx, Freud, Althusser


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