English 120

Literature of the Later 18th Century

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Fall 2010 Turner, James Grantham
Turner, James
TTh 2-3:30 122 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

Pope, A.: The Dunciad; Haywood, E.: Fantomina; Richardson, S.: Pamela; Fielding, H.: Shamela, Joseph Andrews; Johnson, S.: Rasselas; Boswell, J.: London Journal; Gray, T.: Elegy; Goldsmith, O.: She Stoops to Conquer, Deserted Village; Wheatley, P.: Selected Poems; Sterne, L.: Sentimental Journey; Jefferson, T.: Declaration of Independence; Crabbe, G.: The Village; Equiano, O.: Life of Gustavus Vassa; Wollstonecraft, M.: Vindication of the Rights of Woman; Blake, W.: The Marriage of Heaven and Hell; shorter texts available in a reader or the Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. I.


A sampling of writings in English from the doom-filled last years of Pope to the stirrings of Revolution and abolitionism. Texts have been included from the Irish, Scots, African, and English diasporas, and from verse satire, drama, criticism, autobiography, and novels both epistolary and narrative. Central issues are sex and gender, slavery, the country and the city, and the relationship of "high" and "low" in literature and culture. Key texts include Samuel Richardson's controversial best-seller Pamela, Laurence Sterne's experimental Sentimental Journey, the Declaration of Independence by Thomas Jefferson (his original version, not the one adopted by the USA), and the autobiography of Olaudah Equiano, an African prince tricked into slavery. The course will climax with the radical feminist Mary Wollstonecraft and the mystic revolutionary William Blake, in full color.

This course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.

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