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

Spring 2010

E 392M • Blake/Coleridge & 18th-Century Empircism

Unique Days Time Location Instructor


Course Description

Meeting time, location: (Official course schedule)

This course seeks to understand Blake's and Coleridge’s developing conception of spirit and matter, agency and causation, by exploring their evolving religious beliefs and political affiliations, and especially their different approaches to poetic symbolism and allegory. A main theme will be their differing critiques of Lockean empirical psychology and metaphysics, and their complicated relation to the Locke-influenced political radicalism of the 1790s. Other topics of investigation include the development of their religious beliefs within the contexts of Rational Dissent and "enthusiastic" religion; prophecy and revelation as represented and transacted in the imagery and structures of their poetry; 18th-century physiological theories of touch and vision as considered in relation to Coleridge’s organicism and Blake’s visual art; and the different conceptions of culture and tradition which are conveyed by the two men’s work.


Complete Poetry and Prose of William Blake, ed. David Erdman, 3rd ed. (Doubleday)

David Erdman, Blake: Prophet Against Empire, 3rd ed. (Doubleday, 1982; rpt. Dover Press)

Coleridge's Poetry and Prose (Norton), ed. Halmi, Magnuson, and Modiano

Optional: Marilyn Gaull, Enligh Romanticism: The Human Context (Norton)

Plus, a hefty packet of xeroxed materials available at Jenn’s Copy at 2200 Guadeloupe, lower level.


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