English 246H

Graduate Pro-seminar: Victorian Period

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Spring 2017 Duncan, Ian
MW 11-12:30 B40 Hearst Field Annex

Book List

Arnold, M.: Culture and Anarchy; Browning, E.B.: Aurora Leigh; Darwin, C.: On the Origin of Species; Dickens, C.: Bleak House; Gaskell, E.: Mary Barton; Hardy, T.: Tess of the D'Urbervilles; Pater, W.: The Renaissance; Tennyson, A.: Poems

Other Readings and Media

Shorter texts and supplementary readings will be made available in a course reader and/or on our B-Courses site.


We will read and discuss some major works of Victorian poetry, fiction, and critical and scientific prose, in light of nineteenth-century discussions of aesthetic, social, and natural conceptions of form, as well as current debates over the status and constitution of Victorian studies.  Since this is a survey, our thematic scope will be quite open, but topics may include: the status of poetry in an age of prose; long literary forms (both continuous and serial) and temporal conceptions of form; progress, development, education, reform, and Victorian ideas (antiquarian, humanist, anthropological) of "culture"; and relations between science and aesthetics.  Students will attend a spring colloquium (featuring advanced graduate students and local faculty in the field) on the state of Victorian studies.

Works will include:

Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam and The Princess; Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Aurora Leigh; Arthur H. Clough, Amours de Voyage; Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Barton; Charles Dickens, Bleak House; George Eliot, Daniel Deronda; Thomas Hardy, Tess of the D’Urbervilles; Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species and The Descent of Man; Matthew Arnold, Culture and Anarchy; selected writings on aesthetics by John Ruskin, Walter Pater, and Oscar Wilde. Selected readings in current criticism.

This course satisfies the Group 4 (Nineteenth Century) requirement.

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