English 41: Literatures in English, 1688-1865

arrow William_Keach@brown.edu
Carr House 212
Office M 2-3, W 3-4 and by appt.
arrow Philip_Gould@brown.edu
Carr House 328
MW 9:30-11 and by appt.

arrow Course Description and Requirements
arrowGrading |arrow Texts
arrow First Essay Assignment |arrow Second Essay Assignment
arrowLibrary Resources & Research Assistance
arrowBibliography of Criticism in American Literary Studies

Schedule of Lectures

arrowPart I: Journeys to New Worlds
arrowPart II: Liberty and Slavery in the "Black Atlantic"
arrowPart III: Seduction and Diaspora in the 18th-century Novel
arrowPart IV: Cultures of Enlightenment, Taste and Refinement
arrowPart V: The Literature of Politics
arrowPart VI: Nature, Culture and Society

Course Description and Requirements

This course is the second part the Literatures in English sequence. It a selective exploration of literatures in English produced on both sides of the Atlantic between 1688 and 1865. We will read a range of texts that enables us to compare literary articulations of generic, cultural, and political developments of this era in a transatlantic context. These literary texts include spiritual autobiography, travel narrative, slave narrative, poetry, the essay, and the novel. The course emphasizes the theme of individual and collective quests for identity as well as the emergence of "literature" as a distinct category of writing.

Students are expected to attend the lectures and participate in section meetings. These meetings are designed to promote discussion of the course (and sometimes outside) readings and to focus on the course's writing assignments.

Students are required to write two 3-5 page essays, one 5-8 page essay. The final examination will cover the entire semester's readings. Please see the class schedule below for due dates. Essays are due in lecture that day. All topics will be distributed in advance, and students will have several options for each essay assignment.

The course's teaching assistants will run the section meetings and grade essays and the final exam. Please discuss your paper topic with your TA as you work on it; you may consult the lecturers as well but be sure to speak with your TA first.



First Essay: 15%
Second Essay: 15%
Third Essay: 25%
Final Exam 35% (Final exam is on Thursday, May 9th, 9am)
Section meeting-work: 10%

Please note that 3 or more absences from section meetings may result in a grade of "NC".
Late papers will not be accepted unless arrangements are made at least a day before they are due.



arrowThe Norton Anthologv of English Literature, vol. 1-2 (NAEL)
arrowThe Norton Anthology of American Literature, vol. 1 (NAAL)
arrow Daniel Defoe. Moll Flanders (Norton Critical Edition)
arrowChild, Lydia Maria. Hobomok. (Rutgers University Press)

Schedule of Lectures

*Please note that students should read the introductions to all of the writers listed below. They should also read the historical introductions provided in the Norton anthologies.

Week of January 21
: Course Introduction: English Literatures in Transatlantic Contexts

Part I: Journeys to New Worlds

Week of January 28:
arrow John Milton. Paradise Lost, Books 1 and 2 (NAEL 1: 1815-1858)
arrow John Milton. Paradise Lost, Books 4, 9, 12 (NAEL 1: 1874-95, 1961-86, 2030-44)

Week of February 4:
arrowMary Rowlandson. A Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration (NAAL 297-329)
arrowJonathan Edwards, "Personal Narrative" and "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" (NAAL 441-51, 474-84)
arrowJohn Woolman, "Journal" and "Some Considerations on the Keeping of Negroes" (NAAL: 596-612)

Part II: Liberty and Slavery in the "Black Atlantic"

Week of February 11:

arrow Olaudah Equiano. The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African, Written by Himself (NAAL 751-785)
arrowPhillis Wheatley. Selected poems and letters (NAAL 824-40)

Week of February 18:
arrowFrederick Douglass. "The Meaning of July Fourth for the Negro: Speech at Rochester, New York, July 5, 1852" (NAAL 2057-2075)


Part III: Seduction and Diaspora in the 18th-century Novel

Week of February 25:
arrowDaniel Defoe. Moll Flanders.

Week of March 4:
arrowSusanna Rowson, Charlotte: A Tale of Truth (NAAL 850-917)
arrowJudith Sargent Murray, "On the Equality of the Sexes" (NAAL 787-95)

Part IV: Cultures of Enlightenment, Taste and Refinement

Week of March 11:
arrowBenjamin Franklin, Autobiography, Parts I and II (NAAL 523-96)
arrowJohn Dryden. "Macflecknoe" (NAEL 1: 2099-2105), "An Essay of Dramatic Poesy" and "A Discourse Concerning the Original and Progress of Satire" (NAEL 1: 2114-22);
arrowAlexander Pope "An Essay on Criticism," "The Rape of the Lock," "Epistle 2. To a Lady" (NAEL 1: 2505-44, 2592-98)

Week of March 18:
arrowJoseph Addison and arrowRichard Steele. Essays from arrowThe Tatler and arrowSpectator (NAEL 1: 2479-2504)
arrowSamuel Johnson. Rambler No. 4, 5, 10 and Idler No. 31 (NAEL 1: 2674-78, 2712-19); A Dictionary of the English Language (NAEL 1: 2719-24)
arrowWashinton Irving. Rip Van Winkle, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (NAAL 936-969)
arrowEdgar Allan Poe, "The Philosophy of Composition," "The Raven," "William Wilson"


Part V: The Literature of Politics

Week of April 1:
"English Controversy About the Revolution" (NAEL 2: 117-44);
arrowWilliam Blake. "Songs of Innocence and Experience", "The Marriage of Heaven and Hel"l (NAEL 2: 43-59, 72-82)
arrowMary Wollstonecraft. A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (NAEL 2: 98-125)

arrowThomas Jefferson. The Declaration of Independence (NAAL 714-19)
arrowAbraham Lincoln, Speeches and Addresses (NAAL 1580-90)

Part VI: Nature, Culture and Society

Week of April 8:
arrowWilliam Wordsworth. Poems from and preface to Lyrical Ballads (NAEL 2: 219-51)
arrowSamuel Taylor Coleridge. "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" and chapter 14 of Biographia Literaria (NAEL 2: 422-39, 478-83)
arrowRalph Waldo Emerson. "The Poet," "Experience" (NAAL 1144-73)
arrowWalt Whitman, Preface to Leaves of Grass, Poems from Calamus (NAAL: 2080-95, 2153-61)

Week of April 15:
Introduction to "The Victorian Age" (NAEL 2: 1043-65)
"Industrialism: or Decline?" (NAEL 2: 1696-1712)
arrowThomas Carlyle. Past and Present (NAEL 2: 1110-15)
arrowElizabeth Barrett Browning. Aurora Leigh (NAEL 2: 1180-95)

arrowMathew Arnold. "The Function of Criticism at the Present Time" (NAEL 2: 1514-28)
arrowJohn Ruskin. The Stones of Venice (NAEL 2: 1432-43)
arrowAlfred Lord Tennyson. "The Lady of Shalott" (NAEL 2: 1204-08)
arrowOscar Wilde. The Critic as Artist (NAEL 2: 1752-60)

Week of April 22:
arrowLydia Maria Child, Hobomok: A Tale of Early Times
arrowWilliam Apess, "An Indian's Looking-Glass for the White Man" (NAAL: 1045-51)



arrowHumanities Discipline Group arrowThe John Hay Library arrowDepartment of English