English | English Fiction 1660-1790
L631 | 27023 | Sorensen


2:30p – 3:45p TR

As we read a wide range of verse and non-fiction prose texts of
eighteenth-century Britain, we shall acquaint ourselves with some of
the critical conversations that have re-shaped eighteenth-century
literary and cultural studies. Helping to focus our discussions will
be conceptualizations of print cultures—we shall explore how poetry
and non-fiction prose of the period inhabited and negotiated the
intersections of print capitalism with manuscript circulation,
representations of orality, imperial and national identity
formation, historiography, and public and private life.
Familiarizing ourselves with various poetic modes deployed in the
poetry of this period--from mock epic to verse epistle to georgic—we
shall consider how those modes might have developed as useful forms
for navigating and intervening in those intersections. Recent
scholarship has challenged longstanding assumptions about the “rise”
of print and standard English and a consequent stabilization of
social identities and relationships, and we shall be especially
interested in attending to the women, colonial, provincial, and
laboring class poets and writers who clearly trouble that narrative.
Readings from the course have not been finalized—and I welcome
suggestions at jsorense@indiana.edu –but will likely include
Jonathan Swift, Alexander Pope, Joseph Addison, Elizabeth Wortley
Montagu, Thomas Gray, Anne Finch, Sarah Dixon, Allan Ramsay, Stephen
Duck, Mary Leapor, Mary Collier, Edward Young, Thomas Chatterton,
Samuel Johnson, James Macpherson, William Cowper, Oluadah Equiano,
Robert Burns, Janet Little. We might read critical works from
Benedict Anderson, John Barrell, Helen Deutsch, Julie Ellison, Penny
Fielding, Kevis Goodman, Jurgen Habermas, Harriet Guest, Suvir Kaul,
Donna Landry, Susan Manning, Paula McDowell, John Sitter. Course
requirements include three short exploratory papers (or one
conference-length paper and a short paper), a précis of the readings
for one class meeting, and informed participation in class
discussion.

Please Note: Section number may be incorrect.