English 190

Research Seminar: The 1890s


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
4 Fall 2010 Puckett, Kent
Puckett, Kent
M 3-6 301 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

What difference does a date make? What is it about the end of a century that encourages such strong feelings of apocalypse, degeneration or renewal? This course will consider texts written in and around the 1890s, a decade characterized by its intense self-consciousness about what it meant to live through the last days of the nineteenth century. We’ll read novels, poems, philosophy, works of psychology, sociology, history, and aesthetics in order to think about some of the period’s key political, social, and cultural questions. We’ll also examine ways in which particular literary strategies and aesthetic movements—Decadence, Aestheticism, etc.—emerged to respond to these questions. While reading works by Michael Field, Sigmund Freud, Thomas Hardy, Walter Pater, Olive Schreiner, Bram Stoker, Oscar Wilde, W.B. Yeats, and others, we will explore the relations between literary culture and—among other things—sex and sexology, feminism, photography, race theory and imperialism, spiritualism, degeneration, and the look of history from what seemed to some to be the end of all things.

English 190 replaced English 100 and 150 as of Fall '09. English majors may fulfill the seminar requirement for the major by taking one section of English 190 (or by having taken either English 100 or English 150 before Fall '09). Please read the paragraph on page 2 of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in, or wait-listing for, this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.

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