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Martin Kevorkian, Chair CAL 226, Mailcode B5000, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4991

Fall 2009

E 374K • Elizabethan Poetry and Prose-- HONORS

Unique Days Time Location Instructor

Barret, J

Course Description

Please refer to the course schedule for course days, time, room location, prerequisites and possible cross-listings:

In this Honors seminar, we will read some of the most influential, most experimental and most powerful poetry and prose in the English language. We will explore questions of artistic representation, nationalism, religious reformation, new audiences, genre, form and linguistic innovation (to name but a few) by immersing ourselves in the fictions of an age renowned for its insatiable literary appetite. Beginning with the lyrics of Wyatt and Surrey, we will survey the major shorter poems of such authors as William Shakespeare (including the Sonnets), Michael Drayton, Samuel Daniel, George Chapman and John Donne. We will turn also to large-scale poetic and imaginative projects including Sir Philip Sidney's Old Arcadia and Edmund Spenser’s Faerie Queene (Book III). As we investigate the particularities of the Elizabethan dedication to poetic creation, we will also encounter some critical writing from the period itself (Sidney’s Defense of Poetry and George Gascoigne’s Certain Notes of Instruction, for example). This seminar culminates in a research paper, so we will familiarize ourselves with research tools and resources throughout the course. Whether reading supplementary critical essays, looking at early printed versions of our primary texts in sessions at the Harry Ransom Center, or completing short research exercises, research methodology will be an integral part of the course and our collective discussion.

Grading Policy

Written assignments will include brief research-oriented writing assignments (1-2 pages each), short close-reading essays (approx. 3-4 pages each), a research paper prospectus, and a final research essay (10-12 pages). Short essays: 30%; Research assignments: 15%; Final essay: 30%; Participation, etc.: 25%


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