English | Literatures in English 1600-1800
E302 | 2010 | P Lindenbaum

11:15a-12:05p MWF (30) 3 cr


This version of E302 will use the course's chronological period and
trans-Atlantic scope to examine the completion of the changeover from
scribal or manuscript to print culture.  We shall focus upon the various
texts to be read as test cases in the study of distribution or publishing
history and shall examine how the texts were presented to their original
audiences and subsequently underwent change up to and including appearance
in tomes like the NORTON ANTHOLOGY (Volume One of which shall be the basic
text of the course).  Thus we shall study Donne as a coterie or manuscript
and then a print poet;  Jonson as a figure who used print to advertise his
own achievements;  Herbert as a private manuscript poet made into a public
apologist for High Anglicanism;  Milton as a poet on the make in 1645 and
then one made by the magnificent 1688 Folio edition of PARADISE LOST;
Pope as an independent professional poet;  Johnson as a figure deeply
immersed in the marketplace.  For America, we shall examine the
Declaration of Independence and how it was distributed, Paine's COMMON
SENSE, and then the reaction against the assumptions of those two works in
Charles Brockden Brown's WIELAND.  Students will be expected to read and
understand a considerable amount of poetry and prose that is not actually
explicated in class;  rather, class discussion will be devoted to how the
works we are reading originally appeared, whom they were directed to, and
how they were likely to have been perceived in their own time.  The course
may well not be quite as "literary" as many students might wish, and if
you have an objection to the study of history, this is not the section of
E302 for you.  Several of our sessions will be held in the Lilly Library,
where we shall examine and work from the original 17th and 18th century

The Hour and Final Exams will consist of passages for identification and
explication from the reading, just to ensure that students are keeping up
on that reading.  The two 4-page essays may well satisfy that function as
well.  Students themselves will make presentations to the class as a whole
at our sessions at the Lilly.