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Elizabeth Cullingford, Chair CAL 226, Mailcode B5000, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4991

George S Christian

Other faculty Ph.D., 2000, University of Texas at Austin

Adjunct Professor
George S Christian

Contact

Biography

George Christian is an Adjunct Professor of English.  He is a Plan II graduate of UT, where he also earned his law degree, M.A. in English, and Ph.D. in English.  He is working on a second Ph.D. in Modern European History.   A practicing lawyer who has taught British Literature for five years, he specializes in the nineteenth-century English novel.  He has published numerous articles on Victorian novels by Carlyle, Dickens, Trollope, Hardy, and Gissing.  Current research interests include: the relationship of law and literature in the nineteenth-century English novel and the history of Scotland during the French Revolution.

Interests

The relationship of law and literature in the nineteenth-century English novel; the history of Scotland during the French Revolution.

E 328 • British Novel In 19th Century

35725 • Fall 2014
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 302
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G

Unique #:  35725

Semester:  Fall 2014

Cross-lists:  n/a

Flags:  Global Cultures; Writing

Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel? What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change.

Texts: Sir Walter Scott, The Bride of Lammermoor; William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Barton; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Our Mutual Friend; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Thomas Hardy, The Mayor of Casterbridge.

Requirements & Grading: Weekly response essays, 25%; 1 oral presentation, 15%; 2 take-home examinations, 30%; 1 final paper (7-8 pages), 30%.

E 349S • George Eliot

35810 • Fall 2014
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am PAR 302
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G

Unique #:  35810

Semester:  Fall 2014

Cross-lists:  n/a

Flags:  Writing

Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: Six semester hours of upper-division coursework in English.

Description: This course will critically examine some of the key writings of George Eliot (1819-1880). The youngest daughter of Robert Evans, an earnest, morally upright estate manager from Warwickshire, Mary Anne Evans became one of the most widely read and controversial novelists of the Victorian period—so controversial, in fact, that the Church of England denied her request to be interred in Westminster Abbey with other English literary giants. How did this young girl raised in a rural and evangelical family setting develop into possibly the most free-thinking, intellectually complex, and socially unorthodox novelist of her (or any) time? To establish a context for our reading of Eliot’s novels, we will read selections from her translation of the German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach’s The Essence of Christianity (1854) and a number of her essays for the Westminster Review, owned by the influential publisher John Chapman (with whom she fell in love, though he was married and had a mistress). Encouraged to write fiction by her lover, the eminent Victorian philosopher and critic George Henry Lewes (like Chapman, a married man), she produced her first work of fiction, Scenes of Clerical Life (1858), under the pseudonym George Eliot, partly because of her scandalous affair with Lewes, but predominantly because she wanted to establish an independent literary reputation. In fact, one critic of her first novel, the immensely successful Adam Bede (1860), opined that only a man could have written such a novel (you will have the opportunity to judge this for yourself!). Although her readers soon discovered that the true author of Adam Bede was Mrs. Marian Evans Lewes (as she styled herself), her unorthodox private life did nothing to impair the popularity of her fiction. From Adam Bede, we will move on to the semi-autobiographical The Mill on the Floss (1860) and the “political” novel Felix Holt: The Radical (1866). We will close the semester with the encyclopedic history of a provincial town at the time of the 1832 Reform Act, Middlemarch (1871-2) (which Virginia Woolf called the first English novel for grown-up people) and her last novel, Daniel Deronda (1876). We will also supplement our reading with critical and biographical material, as well as viewing excerpts from the many BBC adaptations of Eliot’s novels. (Note: This course carries the Writing Flag.)

Primary Texts (to purchase): Scenes of Clerical Life, Adam Bede, The Mill on the Floss, Felix Holt: The Radical, Middlemarch, and Daniel Deronda.

Requirements & Grading: Class participation and weekly response essays (500 words) (25% of final grade); 2 short papers (4-5 pages) (40% of final grade); oral report (5% of final grade); prospectus/bibliography and semester paper (8-10 pages) (30% of final grade).

E S350R • Angels/Devils Victorn Fict-Gbr

83415 • Summer 2014
Meets
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G

Unique #:  83415

Semester:  Summer 2014, second term

Cross-lists:  n/a

Flags:  n/a

Restrictions: Oxford Summer Program participants

Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisite: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: While Victorians remain associated with moral rectitude and priggishness, the age’s literature actually teems with immoral and transgressive personal and social activity in the very stratum of society directly identified with the high seriousness of the period: the “rising” middle class. We will confront this important contradiction in four Victorian novels: William Thackeray’s Vanity Fair (1847), which explores middle class gender formation through gaming; Anne Brontë’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848), which offers a shocking narrative of the causes and effects of middle-class domestic violence; Charles Dickens’s Dombey and Son (1846-48), which traces the transformation of a man of business into a domestic monster who beats and abandons his innocent daughter; and Margaret Oliphant’s Hester (1883), a slightly later novel of gender-reversals and illicit financial and sexual relationships stemming from a Victorian banking business. To enhance our reading, we will visit that infamous “den of iniquity” that is the thriving metropolis of London; seaside Brighton where Regency bucks made public display of their sartorial splendor while plotting the ruin of young maids and each other; and an assortment of famous country locales behind whose glassy “Victorian” veneers lurk dark legends and domestic disquiet.

Texts: William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Charles Dickens, Dombey and Son; Anne Brontë, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall; Margaret Oliphant, Hester.

Note: For ease of traveling, you may use Kindle or on-line editions of the novels in Wadham. If you plan to do this, however, make sure you bring the pertinent text to class each day.

Requirements & Grading:

  • Two short research reports (4-5 pages) (topics to be assigned in advance), 30% of final grade;
  • Two oral presentations (5-10 minutes) (topics to be assigned in advance), 20% of final grade;
  • Weekly response papers (500 words), 30% of final grade;
  • Active and consistent participation in class discussion, 20% of final grade.

E 316K • Masterworks Of Lit: British

35475-35530 • Spring 2014
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm SAC 1.402
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Instructor:  Christian, G

Unique #:  35475-35530

Semester:  Spring 2014

Cross-lists:  n/a

Prerequisites: English 603A, Rhetoric and Writing 306, 306Q, or Tutorial Course 603A; and a passing score on the reading section of the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) test.

Description: Empire, identity, and literature --

This course introduces students to British literature from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century. While the reading selections represent a broad range of literary forms and genres, we will focus on a group of themes and how they change through different periods and cultural contexts. These themes include women and gender roles, British self- and national identity, imperialism, and religious and political consciousness. By reading British literature through these lenses, we will see continuities and divergences, common concerns and radical differences. We will also seek an understanding of the way self-expression interacts with historical and cultural contexts to produce what we think of as “literature.” Just as importantly, this course will help you develop and sharpen your own reading, analytical, and critical thinking skills, skills that will not only stand you in good stead in whatever career or occupation you pursue, but will enhance your enjoyment of literature throughout a lifetime of learning.

Texts: All texts available online.

Requirements & Grading: Class participation (attendance, reading, homework, discussion, quizzes): 25%; two in-class essay exams (25% each): 50%; final essay exam: 25%.

E 350R • Brit/Amer Novel: Hist/Nation

36065 • Spring 2014
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 0.106
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Instructor:  Christian, G and Cox, J

Unique #:  36065

Semester:  Spring 2014

Cross-lists:  n/a

Prerequisite: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: This course takes as its focus a series of moments during the last two hundred years of the British and American novel tradition. One major issue under our consideration will be how these authors produce and/or challenge national histories and national identities. We will also consider other key ideas--modernity, liberty, law, indigeneity, immigration, regionalism, exceptionalism, colonialism, imperialism--in which these novelists share an interest. The transatlantic scope of the course provides an opportunity to consider both the shared and divergent histories and geographies of these traditions. Throughout the course, we will ask: what makes the British novel British? What makes the American novel American? When is a novel’s Britishness or Americanness difficult to identify? When do the novelists embrace or reject Britishness and Americanness?

Tentative Reading List: Sir Walter Scott, Guy Mannering (1815); Philip Roth, The Plot Against America (2004); Bram Stoker, Dracula (1897); Frank Norris, McTeague (1899); Agatha Christie, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926); Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep (1939); Michelle Cliff, Abeng (1984); Toni Morrison, Beloved (1987); Anne Enright, The Gathering (2007); Louise Erdrich, The Round House (2012).

Requirements & Grading: 3 five page essays: 75%; Weekly reading journal, 1 oral presentation on a secondary source, attendance and participation: 25%.

E 350R • Imperlism/Soc In Brit Lit-Hon

35855 • Fall 2013
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am MEZ 1.202
(also listed as LAH 350 )
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Instructor:  Christian, G            Areas:  III / F

Unique #:  35855            Flags:  Global Cultures; Writing

Semester:  Fall 2013            Restrictions:  English Honors, Plan I Honors

Cross-lists:  LAH 350            Computer Instruction:  n/a

Prerequisite: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: The great nineteenth-century English historian J. R. Seeley famously wrote that Britain acquired its vast empire “in a fit of absence of mind.” The image of an absent-minded imperialist fits well with the popular description of the century between the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 and the outbreak of the First World War in August, 1914 as the Pax Britannica. But for thousands of English and colonial soldiers and millions of non-English subjects of the Empire (including many Irish, Scots, and Welsh), this century of “British Peace” was anything but peaceful. Though England fought only one European war during the period (the Crimean War, 1854-55), it prosecuted dozens of colonial wars and armed actions aimed at forcing open imperial markets for “free” trade, suppressing local insurrections against European influence, and establishing varying degrees of formal and informal rule in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Pacific (often to pre-empt the imperial ambitions of other European powers).

In this seminar we will examine literary texts of the period from an “imperial” perspective. While we will study texts with specifically imperial settings and subjects, we will also seek an understanding of the impact of the Empire on narratives that appear determinedly domestic. Along the way we will assess the ways in which imperial concerns implicate and inflect constructions of gender, class, and race in nineteenth-century British literature.

Texts (tentative): Benjamin Disraeli, Tancred; Charles Dickens, Great Expectations; Thomas Hughes, Tom Brown’s Schooldays; George Eliot, Daniel Deronda; Rider Haggard, King Solomon’s Mines; Rudyard Kipling, Plain Tales from the Hills (selections), The Man Who Would Be King; Joseph Conrad, Nostromo; selected poetry; Robinson & Gallagher, The Imperialism of Free Trade and other selected historiography.

Requirements & Grading: Two short essays (5-7 pages) 30% of final grade; weekly response papers (500 words), 40% of final grade; final essay (6-8 pages), 30% of final grade. Essays must be revised.

E F328 • English Novel In 19th Century

83540 • Summer 2013
Meets MTWTHF 1130am-100pm SZB 426
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G            Areas:  III / F

Unique #:  83540            Flags:  Global cultures

Semester:  Summer 2013, first session            Restrictions:  n/a

Cross-lists:  n/a            Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel?  What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change.

Texts: Sir Walter Scott, Waverley; William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Charles Dickens, Hard Times; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Thomas Hardy, Tess of the d’Urbervilles.

Requirements & Grading: Weekly response essays 25%; 3 take-home essays (75%).

E 316K • Masterworks Of Lit: British

34960-35005 • Spring 2013
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm FAC 21
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G            Areas:  -- / B

Unique #:  34960-35005            Flags:  Global cultures

Semester:  Spring 2013            Restrictions:  n/a

Cross-lists:  n/a            Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: E 603A, RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 603A; and a passing score on the reading section of the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) test.

Description: Empire, Identity, and Literature --

This course introduces students to British literature from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century. While the reading selections represent a broad range of literary forms and genres, we will focus on a group of themes and how they change through different periods and cultural contexts. Specifically, these themes include women and gender roles, British self- and national identity, imperialism, and religious and political consciousness.  By reading British literature through these lenses, we will see continuities and divergences, common concerns and radical differences. We will also seek an understanding of the way self-expression interacts with historical and cultural contexts to produce what we think of as “literature.”

Texts: Course Packet.

Requirements & Grading: Class participation (attendance, reading, discussion, quizzes), 20%; Exams, 25% each; Final exam, 30%.

Attendance is mandatory. If you must miss a class, please let me know in advance, if possible. You will still be responsible for the reading and getting notes from another student on what you missed. If you must miss an exam, you may not take it at a later date unless you have made arrangements to do so before the date on which the test is given. Missed quizzed may not be made up.

E 603A • Comp And Reading In World Lit

34540 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 930am-1100am MEZ 1.204
show description

Below is the reading list for both semesters of this course. During the fall we will read the epic poetry of Homer, Virgil, Dante, and Milton, Greek tragedy and Shakespearean history, and the great anti-romance, Don Quixote. During the spring we will explore European Romanticism, represented here by Goethe’s Faust and Scott’s Waverley, and the protean genre of the modern novel in works by Dostoyevsky, Zola, Kafka, Faulkner, and Thomas Mann.

Texts/Readings: Fall

Homer, The Odyssey

Aeschylus, The Oresteia

Virgil, The Aeneid (first six books)

Dante, The Inferno

Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice Shakespeare, Henry V

Milton, Paradise Lost

Cervantes, Don Quixote (Part 1)

Spring

Goethe, Faust (Part 1)

Scott, Waverley

Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment

Zola, The Debacle

Kafka, The Trial

Mann, The Magic Mountain

Woolf, Three Guineas

Bulgakov, The Master and Margarita

Assignments:

Although there may be occasional lectures to provide historical background, the primary method of instruction will be class discussion of the assigned reading. You must therefore come to class prepared to participate in discussions and will be asked periodically to lead them by posing two or three critical questions for consideration. No midterms or final exams will be given, but expect to write four or five essays (4-5 typed pages long) each term, plus occasional quizzes or brief (one-page) papers in class. No late papers will be accepted. Attendance is mandatory—no one absent more than five classes in a semester will receive a passing grade. Grading breakdown:

Writing assignments: 75%

Class participation:   25%

About the Professor:

George S. Christian graduated from Plan II in 1982.  He went on to the University of Texas School of Law and has practiced law in New York and Austin since 1985.  He returned to graduate school in English at UT, receiving his doctorate in 2000.  He is in his second year of teaching at UT, where he specializes in nineteenth-century British literature.  He is an inveterate reader, an unreconstructed humanist, a father of four children, and a passionate follower of UT sports since childhood.

E 328 • English Novel In 19th Century

35365 • Fall 2012
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 204
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G            Areas:  III / F

Unique #:  35365            Flags:  Global cultures, Writing

Semester:  Fall 2012            Restrictions:  n/a

Cross-lists:  n/a            Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel? What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change.

Texts: Sir Walter Scott, The Bride of Lammermoor; William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Barton; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, David Copperfield; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Thomas Hardy, The Mayor of Casterbridge.

Requirements & Grading: Weekly response essays, 25%; 1 oral presentation, 15%; 2 take-home examinations, 30%; 1 final paper (7-8 pages), 30%.

E 350R • Law/Socty/Novel In 19-C Brit

35507 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 800am-930am PAR 204
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G            Areas:  II / F

Unique #:  35507            Flags:  Writing

Semester:  Fall 2012            Restrictions:  n/a

Cross-lists:  n/a            Computer Instruction:  No

E 376L (Topic: Law, Society, and the Novel in Nineteenth-Century Britain) may not also be counted.

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: This course will explore the fictional representation of the legal system and its place in the social order in nineteenth-century Britain. During this period immense economic, social, and political change profoundly transformed the legal identities of individuals and entities, their relations to one another and to property, and their rights and obligations vis-à-vis the state. For example, how were women and the mentally ill constituted as “legal” subjects? Why were certain crimes against property, as well as persons, punishable by death? Under what circumstances, if any, could ordinary people seek redress in the legal system for a personal injury or financial harm? Drawing on texts of novelists such as Scott, Edgeworth, Dickens, Disraeli, Gaskell, and Eliot, as well as on those of legal theorists and historians, we will trace the changing perceptions of the law and its role in "modern" British society. Many of these novelists sought “justice” in fiction where they couldn’t find it in “real” life. Moreover, they attempted to realize in fiction what the legal process itself was designed to produce: a verifiable account of “truth” out of a welter of conflicting evidence. In this way, writing and interpreting the novel resemble the legal process itself.

Texts (tentative): Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Bleak House; George Eliot, Adam Bede; Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil; Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Barton; Selections from texts on the history and development of English jurisprudence.

Requirements & Grading: Two take-home essay exams (15% each), 30% of final grade; One short final paper (5-7 pp.), 30% of final grade; Weekly response papers (500 words each), 40% of final grade.

E 316K • Masterworks Of Lit: British

34910-34945 • Spring 2012
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm GSB 2.124
show description

Instructor:  Christian, G            Areas:  n/a

Unique #:  34910-34945            Flags:  n/a

Semester:  Spring 2012            Restrictions:  n/a

Cross-lists:  n/a            Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: Completion of at least thirty semester hours of coursework, including E 603A, RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 603A, and a passing score on the reading section of the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) test. 

Description: Empire, Identity, and Literature --

This course introduces students to British literature from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century. While the reading selections represent a broad range of literary forms and genres, we will focus on a group of themes and how they change through different periods and cultural contexts. Specifically, these themes include women and gender roles, British self- and national identity, imperialism, and religious and political consciousness.  By reading British literature through these lenses, we will see continuities and divergences, common concerns and radical differences. We will also seek an understanding of the way self-expression interacts with historical and cultural contexts to produce what we think of as “literature.”

Texts: Course Packet.

Requirements & Grading: Class participation (attendance, reading, discussion, quizzes), 20%; Exams, 25% each; Final exam, 30%.

Attendance is mandatory. If you must miss a class, please let me know in advance, if possible. You will still be responsible for the reading and getting notes from another student on what you missed. If you must miss an exam, you may not take it at a later date unless you have made arrangements to do so before the date on which the test is given. Missed quizzed may not be made up.

E 328 • English Novel In 19th Century

35225 • Fall 2011
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 204
show description

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel? What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change. 

Texts: Sir Walter Scott, Guy Mannering; William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Great Expectations; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Thomas Hardy, Far From the Madding Crowd.

Requirements & Grading: Weekly response essays, 25%; 1 oral presentation, 15%; 2 take-home examinations, 30%; 1 final paper (7-8 pages), 30%.

E 350R • Law, Socty, Novel In 19c Brit

35355 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 800am-930am PAR 204
show description

E 376L (Topic: Law, Society, and the Novel in Nineteenth-Century Britain) may not also be counted.

 Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: This course will explore the fictional representation of the legal system and its place in the social order in nineteenth-century Britain. During this period immense economic, social, and political change profoundly transformed the legal identities of individuals and entities, their relations to one another and to property, and their rights and obligations vis-à-vis the state. For example, how were women and the mentally ill constituted as “legal” subjects? Why were certain crimes against property, as well as persons, punishable by death? Under what circumstances, if any, could ordinary people seek redress in the legal system for a personal injury or financial harm? Drawing on texts of novelists such as Scott, Edgeworth, Dickens, Disraeli, Gaskell, and Eliot, as well as on those of legal theorists and historians, we will trace the changing perceptions of the law and its role in "modern" British society. Many of these novelists sought “justice” in fiction where they couldn’t find it in “real” life. Moreover, they attempted to realize in fiction what the legal process itself was designed to produce: a verifiable account of “truth” out of a welter of conflicting evidence. In this way, writing and interpreting the novel resemble the legal process itself. 

Texts (tentative): Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Bleak House; George Eliot, Adam Bede; Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Selections from texts on the history and development of English jurisprudence.

Requirements & Grading: Two take-home essay exams (15% each), 30% of final grade; One short final paper (5-7 pp.), 30% of final grade; Weekly response papers (500 words each), 40% of final grade.

E F350R • Law, Socty, Novel 19c Britain

83610 • Summer 2011
Meets MTWTHF 100pm-230pm PAR 204
show description

E 376L (Topic: Law, Society, and the Novel in Nineteenth-Century Britain) may not also be counted.

 

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.  No exceptions.

 

Description: This course will explore the fictional representation of the legal system and its place in the social order in nineteenth-century Britain. During this period immense economic, social, and political change profoundly transformed the legal identities of individuals and entities, their relations to one another and to property, and their rights and obligations vis-à-vis the state. For example, how were women and the mentally ill constituted as “legal” subjects? Why were certain crimes against property, as well as persons, punishable by death? Under what circumstances, if any, could ordinary people seek redress in the legal system for a personal injury or financial harm? Drawing on texts of novelists such as Scott, Edgeworth, Dickens, Disraeli, Gaskell, and Eliot, as well as on those of legal theorists and historians, we will trace the changing perceptions of the law and its role in "modern" British society. Many of these novelists sought “justice” in fiction where they couldn’t find it in “real” life. Moreover, they attempted to realize in fiction what the legal process itself was designed to produce: a verifiable account of “truth” out of a welter of conflicting evidence. In this way, writing and interpreting the novel resemble the legal process itself. 

 

Texts (tentative): Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Bleak House; George Eliot, Adam Bede; Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Selections from texts on the history and development of English jurisprudence.

 

Requirements & Grading: Two take-home essay exams (30% each), 60% of final grade; One short final paper (5-7 pp.), 40% of final grade.

E 328 • English Novel In 19th Century

34575 • Fall 2010
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 204
show description

Course Description: What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel? What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change.

 Texts: Sir Walter Scott, Guy Mannering; William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Great Expectations; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Thomas Hardy, The Return of the Native.

 Grading: Weekly response essays, 20%; 1 oral presentation, 15%; 2 take-home examinations, 30%; 1 paper proposal (250-500 words), 5%; 1 final paper (7-8 pages), 30%.

 Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing. 

E 350R • Law, Socty, Novel In 19c Brit

34710 • Fall 2010
Meets TTH 800am-930am PAR 204
show description

E 376L (Topic: Law, Society, and the Novel in Nineteenth-Century Britain) may not also be counted.

Course Description: This course will explore the fictional representation of the legal system and its place in the social order in nineteenth-century Britain. During this period immense economic, social, and political change profoundly transformed the legal identities of individuals and entities, their relations to one another and to property, and their rights and obligations vis-à-vis the state. For example, how were women and the mentally ill constituted as “legal” subjects? Why were certain crimes against property, as well as persons, punishable by death? Under what circumstances, if any, could ordinary people seek redress in the legal system for a personal injury or financial harm? Drawing on texts of novelists such as Scott, Edgeworth, Dickens, Disraeli, Gaskell, and Eliot, as well as on those of legal theorists and historians, we will trace the changing perceptions of the law and its role in "modern" British society. Many of these novelists sought “justice” in fiction where they couldn’t find it in “real” life. Moreover, they attempted to realize in fiction what the legal process itself was designed to produce: a verifiable account of “truth” out of a welter of conflicting evidence. In this way, writing and interpreting the novel resemble the legal process itself.

Texts (tentative): Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Bleak House; George Eliot, Adam Bede; Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Selections from texts on the history and development of English jurisprudence.

Grading: Two take-home essay exams (15% each), 30% of final grade; One short final paper (5-7 pp.), 30% of final grade; One prospectus for final paper (500 words), 10% of final grade; Weekly response papers (500 words each), 30% of final grade.

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing. 

E 328 • English Novel In 19th Century

83060 • Summer 2010
Meets MTWTHF 100pm-230pm PAR 306
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Course Description: What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel?  What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change.

Texts:

  • Walter Scott, Waverley
  • William Thackeray, Vanity Fair
  • Charles Dickens, Hard Times
  • Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights
  • George Eliot, Middlemarch
  • Thomas Hardy, Tess of the d’Urbervilles

Grading: Weekly response essays 25%; 3 take-home essays (75%).

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.  

For more information, please download the full course syllabus.

E 316K • Masterworks Of Lit: English

34400-34445 • Spring 2010
Meets TTH 1100-1230pm WCH 1.120
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Unique #s:

34400 34410 34420 34430 34440
34405 34415 34425 34435 34445

 

Course Description

This course introduces students to British literature from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century. While the reading selections represent a broad range of literary forms and genres, we will focus on a group of themes and how they change through different periods and cultural contexts. Specifically, these themes include women and gender roles, British self- and national identity, imperialism, and religious and political consciousness. By reading British literature through these lenses, we will see continuities and divergences,common concerns and radical differences. We will also seek an understanding of the way selfexpression interacts with historical and cultural contexts to produce what we think of as “literature.”

Please note that in order to take this course you must have taken E306 (or its equivalent) and completed 27 hours of course work. If you have any questions about your eligibility for the course, see the Head of Lower Division English or the Undergraduate Advisor.

Unique Number: 34400-45
Meeting Time: TTH 11-12:30
Meeting Place: WCH 1.120

George S. Christian
Office: Calhoun 6
Office Hours; MWF 10-11 or by appointment
Email: gschristian@mail.utexas.edu

Course Requirements:

  • Weekly reading. Reading assignments for each class are given in the detailed syllabus below. Please come to class prepared to discuss the readings assigned for that class period.
  • Regular participation in discussion sessions. Active participation in the weekly discussion sessions is an important part of the final grade in the class (see below). While we will engage in some discussion during the large lecture, the discussion sections are vital to understanding the texts and doing well on the exams, so plan to take full advantage of them.
  • Exams. There will be two exams roughly 1/3 and 2/3 of the way through the semester. The exams will include some objective questions, short passages for identification and discussion, and short essays.
  • Quizzes. There may be periodic short quizzes during the semester to make sure everyone is keeping up with the reading. Quiz grades will be part of the overall participation grade.
  • Final exam. There will be a final exam given on the date indicated in the general university schedule. The final will follow the pattern of the two exams given during the semester.
  • Mandatory attendance. Attendance is mandatory, both for the lecture and discussion sections. If you must miss a class, please let me or your teaching assistant know in advance, if possible. You will still be responsible for the reading and getting notes from another student on what you missed. If you must miss an exam, you may not take it at a later date unless you have made arrangements to do so before the date on which the test is given. Missed quizzes may not be made up.

Books:

  • Course packet (available at Jenn’s Copying & Binding, 2200 Guadalupe)
  • Joseph Conrad and Rudyard Kipling, Heart of Darkness, The Man Who Would Be King, and Other Works on Empire, ed. David Damrosch (New York, 2007) (available at the Co-op)

Grading

  • Class participation (attendance, reading, discussion, quizzes) 25%
  • Exams (25% each) 50%
  • Final exam 25%

Note: Plus/minus grading will not be used in this course.

Accommodations

Students who require special accommodations should notify me at the beginning of the semester (or as
soon as possible), and such accommodations will be made. Students requesting special accommodations
should obtain a letter from the Services of Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office. To ensure that the
most appropriate accommodations can be provided, students should contact the SSD office at 471-6259 or
471-4641.

For more information, please download the full syllabus.

E 603A • Comp And Reading In World Lit

34170 • Fall 2009
Meets TTH 930-1100 MEZ 1.118
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E 603A: Composition and Reading in World Literature (34170)

Instructor:   George S. Christian
Of?ce Hours: Calhoun 6, MWF 8-9 or by appointment
Location: MEZ 1.118
Email:    gschristian@mail.utexas.edu

Course Description

This course is intended to introduce students to some of the formative texts of the western literary  tradition.  During the fall semester, we will read the epic poetry of Homer, Virgil, Dante, and Milton;  Greek and Shakespearean tragedy, and the ?rst part of the great comic novel, Don Quixote.  Through intensive engagement with the texts, both in terms of close reading and frequent writing assignments, we will not only explore the formal elements of the genres we encounter, but trace the emergence of the basic structures of gender, class, racial, and other social and political categories by which we routinely—and often unthinkingly—organize our so-called “modern” experience.  As we proceed through the semester, keep the following questions in mind.  Why are stories so important to “culture”?  Why do we retell the same stories over and over again?  How does literature transmit cultural values across time and space?  Does literature re?ect values already in existence or does it construct or generate those values?  Can literature effect social and cultural change?  What work, if any, does literature actually do?  By the end of the semester, we should begin to formulate provisional answers to some of these questions, answers that will be tested as we move into the recognizably “modern” era next spring.

Course Requirements:

  • Weekly reading.  Reading assignments for each class are given in the detailed syllabus below. Please come to class prepared to discuss the readings assigned for that class period.
  • Regular participation in discussion sessions.  Active participation in the weekly discussion sessions is an important part of the ?nal grade in the class (see below).  You may be asked to set the tone for one or more of our class discussions by presenting two or three critical questions for examination.
  • Papers.  Five essays, each 4-5 typed pages long, will be required during the semester (the due dates are listed on the detailed syllabus below).  For your sanity and mine, NO LATE PAPERS WILL BE ACCEPTED.  You will be given the opportunity to revise each essay to improve your grade.  The purpose of this revision policy is to encourage you to work intensively on your writing during the semester.  In order to receive a higher grade on a revised paper, the revision must do more than just represent the same material in a copyedited form.  It should respond substantively and structurally to my comments and demonstrate a progression in your analysis of the particular subject.  Please do not hesitate to see me in of?ce hours or by appointment to work on your writing or to discuss your ideas (or anything else, for that matter!).  I will make whatever time is necessary to work with you.  No effort will be spared to make this class a successful and satisfying intellectual experience for you.
  • Mandatory attendance.  Attendance is mandatory.  No one absent more than three classes in a semester will receive a passing grade.  If you must miss a class, please let me know in advance, if possible.  You will still be responsible for the reading and getting notes from another student on what you missed.  Missed quizzes may not be made up.  If you must be absent on a class day on which a paper is due, you must arrange to turn the paper in prior to that class period. 

Books and Course Materials:

  • Homer, The Odyssey
  • Aeschylus, The Oresteia
  • Virgil, The Aeneid  (?rst six books)
  • Dante, The Inferno
  • Shakespeare, Macbeth
  • Milton, Paradise Lost
  • Cervantes, Don Quixote (Part 1)

(available at the University Co-op)

Grading

  • Class participation (attendance, reading, discussion)  25%
  • Papers (15% each)  75%

*  No plus/minus grades will be submitted for this course.

Accommodations

Students who require special accommodations should notify me at the beginning of the semester (or
as soon as possible), and such accommodations will be made.  Students requesting special accommo-
dations should obtain a letter from the Services of Students with Disabilities (SSD) Of?ce.  To ensure
that the most appropriate accommodations can be provided, students should contact the SSD of?ce
at 471-6259 or 471-4641.

For more information, please download the full syllabus.

E 328 • English Novel In 19th Cen-W

35070 • Fall 2009
Meets MWF 900-1000 PAR 304
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E 328: The English Novel in the 19th Century (35070)

George S. Christian
Office: Calhoun 6
Office Hours; MWF 8-9 or by appointment
Email: gschristian@mail.utexas.edu

Course Description

What is “Victorian” about the Victorian novel? What does the novel tell us about the way “Victorians” perceived themselves and their place in Britain, the British Empire, and the world? Is there a difference between the nineteenth-century “English” novel and its Scottish and Irish contemporaries? Among many other things, the Victorian novel concerned itself with questions of identity: national and imperial, economic and social, religious and gender. People accustomed to finding their predetermined place in the social order began to see themselves as part of larger groups with common interests: owners and workers, landlords and tenants, men and women, Whigs and Tories. In this class
we will test Disraeli’s famous characterization of Victorian Britain as “Two Nations,” one wealthy and complacent, the other dispossessed and menacing, will be a starting point for examining the Victorian novel’s quest to find a stable basis for personal and social identity in the midst of bewildering change.

Course Prerequisites: Nine hours of coursework in English or Rhetoric and Writing

• Weekly reading. Reading assignments for each class are given in the detailed syllabus below. Please come to class prepared to discuss the readings assigned for that class period.

• Weekly Response Essays and Regular participation in class discussions. Although there may be a few short lectures to provide relevant historical or cultural contexts for the reading, class discussion is the primary method of instruction and will be emphasized and encouraged. To help facilitate the discussion, weekly response papers will be due on each Friday during the course of the semester, exclusive of the first week of class.

• Oral presentation. Each student will give one brief (5-10 minute) oral presentation during the semester. One biographical presentation will be given for each of the authors we will be studying. The remaining presentations will involve selecting one critical reading of the novel we are reading (e.g., a journal article) and explaining it to the class.

• Exams. There will be two take-home exams during the semester. The exams will consist of two or three short essays.

• Paper proposal. Each student will develop a brief paper proposal (250-500 words) on a topic of interest for the final paper. You are free to select your own topics, or you are welcome to discuss potential topics with me. Once you have selected a topic and I have approved it, each student will briefly outline his or her topic for the class.

• Final paper. The final paper will be due on the date indicated on the syllabus. The final paper should be no longer than 1,500-2,000 words.

• Mandatory attendance. Attendance is mandatory. If you must miss a class, please let me know in advance, if possible. You will still be responsible for the reading and getting notes from another student on what you missed.

Books:

Walter Scott, Guy Mannering; William Thackeray, Vanity Fair; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Great Expectations; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Thomas Hardy, The Return of the Native (available at the Co-op or on-line)

Grading

• Class attendance and weekly response essays 20%
• Oral presentation 15%
• Take-home exams 30% (15% each)
• Paper proposal (250-500 words) 5%
• Final paper (7-8 pages)) 30%
*Plus/minus grades will not be submitted for this course.

Accommodations

Students who require special accommodations should notify me at the beginning of the semester (or as soon as possible), and such accommodations will be made. Students requesting special accommodations should obtain a letter from the Services of Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office. To ensure that the most appropriate accommodations can be provided, students should contact the SSD office at 471-6259 or 471-4641.

For more information, please download the full syllabus.

E 376L • Law/Socty/Novel In 19-C Brit-W

35240 • Fall 2009
Meets TTH 800-930 PAR 204
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E 376L: Law, Society, and the Novel in Nineteenth-Century Britain (35240)

Course Prerequisites: Nine hours of coursework in English or Rhetoric and Writing
Instructor: George S. Christian  /  Office: Calhoun 6
Office Hours: MWF 8-9, and by appointment  /  Email: gschristian@mail.utexas.edu

Course Requirements:

• Weekly reading. Reading assignments for each class are given in the detailed syllabus below. Please come to class prepared to discuss the readings assigned for that class period.

• Regular participation in class discussion. Class discussion will be the primary method of instruction. While there will be some short lectures for purposes of background or historical context, most class time will be spent discussing the texts we have read and their significance to the topics of the day.

• Weekly response papers. Students will write a weekly response paper of no more than 500 words. Each response should discuss a topic relevant to the week’s reading, either from a primary or secondary source (or both). These papers may be revised for a higher grade.

• Exams. There will be two short-essay take-home exams in the course. These exams may be revised for a higher grade.

• Prospectus. Each student shall prepare a brief (500 words) prospectus for the final essay. The prospectus will be due on the date specified in the detailed syllabus.

• Short essay. In lieu of a final exam, each student will write a 5-page final essay on a topic selected in consultation with me. This paper is due on the last class day, December 7.

• Regular attendance. Attendance is mandatory. Absences should occur only in cases of serious healthrelated or family emergency. Any student with more than five absences will not receive a passing grade in the course. Special accommodations can be made if a class session or a paper/exam deadline interferes with religious observance. Please let me know as soon as you think a conflict is anticipated.

Books and Course Materials:

Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent; George Eliot, Adam Bede; Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil; Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South; Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights; Charles Dickens, Bleak House; supplemental reading packet

All required books are available at the University Co-op. The supplemental reading packet is available at Jenn’s Copy and Binding, located at 2200 Guadalupe (downstairs).

Grading

• Weekly response papers (includes attendance grade) (30%)
• Examinations (15% each) (30%)
• Final essay (30%)
• Prospectus for final essay (10%)
*Plus/minus grades will not be submitted for this course.

Accommodations

Students who require special accommodations should notify me at the beginning of the semester (or as soon as possible), and such accommodations will be made. Students requesting special accommodations should obtain a letter from the Services of Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office. To ensure that the most appropriate accommodations can be provided, students should contact the SSD office at 471-6259 or 471-4641.

For more information, please download the full syllabus.

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