Florence Boos • email@example.com• phone: 335-0434 • office: 319 EPB hours: by appointment
John Brett, "The Hedger"
We will begin with an introduction to the social landscape in 1830s and 1840s Britain, then examine a wide range of fictional and poetic texts, as well as essays, social commentaries and short autobiographies under rubrics such as "Women," "Reform," Aestheticism," Faith and Doubt," Industry and the City, "Rural and Provincial Life," and "Imperialism and the Colonies." Along the way, we will study linguistic and psychological aspects of the poetry and autobiographies, social implications of the essays and art criticism, and aesthetic principles reflected in the fiction, and seek common motifs and modes of organization in these writings which may have crossed class, generic and regional boundaries.
We will read a brief autobiography by Elizabeth Campbell, essays by Karl Marx, John Stuart Mill, John Ruskin and Walter Pater, short stories by Elizabeth Gaskell, Margaret Oliphant, Flora Annie Steele and Sarah Grand, poetry by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Augusta Webster, Amy Levy, Alfred Tennyson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Oscar Wilde and several working-class and dialect poets, and fictional works by Charles Dickens (Hard Times), George Eliot (Middlemarch), Rudyard Kipling (Kim), William Morris (News from Nowhere), and Ella Hepworth Dixon (The Story of a Modern Woman).
Students will be asked to post weekly comments on the class web site and to write two six-page essays on topics of their choice.