English 45B

Literature in English: Late-17th Through Mid-19th Centuries

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Fall 2014 Sorensen, Janet
MW 1-2 + discussion sections F 1-2 101 Barker

Book List

Austen, J.: Emma; Behn, A.: Oroonoko; Defoe, D.: Moll Flanders; Equiano, O.: The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano; Pope, A.: The Rape of the Lock; Wordsworth, W. & Coleridge, S.: Lyrical Ballads


As we read works produced in a period of often tumultuous change, we shall consider those works as zones of contact, reflecting and sometimes negotiating conflict. In a world of expanding global commerce (imports like tea suddenly becoming commonplace in England), political revolution (English, French, American), and changing conceptions of what it means to be a man or woman (a new medical discourse wants to view them as categorically distinct), increasingly available printed texts become sites of contestation--including debates about what constitutes "proper" language itself. We shall think about the ways in which separate groups--British and African, masters and slaves, slave owners and abolitionists, arch capitalists and devout religious thinkers, Republicans and Conservatives, and men and women--use writing to devise ongoing relationships with each other, often under conditions of inequality. Throughout we shall be especially attuned to formal choices--from linguistic register to generic conventions--and how writers deploy these to incorporate opposition, resist authority or authorize themselves. Requirements will include two papers, a mid-term, a final, and occasional quizzes.

Please note that this class will first meet on Wednesday, September 3; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, September 5.

Discussion Sections

101 Heimlich, Timothy
F 1-2 136 Barrows
102 Young, Rosetta
F 1-2 110 Wheeler
103 Lewis, Rachel Thayer
F 1-2 175 Barrows

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