E 320L • Major Writers of the Restoration and Eighteenth Century
9:30 AM-11:00 AM
This class provides an introductory survey of the great variety of genres and works produced in England during the eighteenth century. This period is characterized by an insatiable curiosity and desire for the new--from the emergence of a genre named "the novel" to the exploration and rebellion of the new world. Because change naturally evokes fear as well as delight, many writers resisted the taste for novelty by upholding "traditional" views. This class explores the resulting tension between the desire for novelty and the invocation of literary tradition. This class will emphasize--in its methodological approach--the rubric of print culture. We will ask questions about the roles of printers, consumers, and booksellers in the making of literature; the relationship between image and text in works as varied as Swift's Gulliver's Travels, Hogarth's progresses, and Blake's poetry; and the interpretive impact of the rambunctious materiality of eighteenth-century books.
Two 4-page essays 20% each
One 8-page paper (rewrite of one of the short papers) 20%
Final Exam 30%
John Gay, The Beggar's Opera (Penguin)
Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (Norton)
Samuel Richardson, Pamela (Oxford)
Henry Fielding, Joseph Andrews and Shamela (2-texts-in-one, Oxford)
Laurence Sterne, Tristram Shandy (Oxford)
William Blake, Songs of Innocence and of Experience (Oxford)
There will also be a course packet with selections from, among others, Pope, Swift, Johnson, Hogarth, Addison and Steele.