English 10A-2 - Winter, 2015

Literatures in English I: to 1700

Class Information

Instructor: Wallis, Christopher
CRN: 72505
Time: MWF 10:00-10:50
Location: 90 SS/Hum. Bldg.


    This reading- and writing-intensive course introduces students to the study of literatures in English before 1700. Over the quarter, we will examine a range of texts to consider how the English literary landscape reflected, shaped, and even challenged historical, social, and cultural understandings in England and abroad. Topics will include the development of the English language; generic emergence, appropriation, and experimentation; shifting conceptions of love, technology, nationalism, religion, economics, gender, sexuality, and politics; and Colonial America’s role in generating new possibilities for literary production and consumption. By the end of the course, students will have acquired 1) a knowledge of key writers, genres, and historical events from the period; 2) an appreciation of the complex ways that literature engages social/cultural matters; and 3) the confidence to participate in the advanced study of literature—including the ability to effectively express nuanced interpretations in writing and contribute to critical discussions through extensive research.


    Formal Papers (12-15 pages): 50%
    Short Assignments: 15%
    Attendance and Participation: 15%
    Final Exam: 20%


    Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, ed. Winny (978-0921149927)
    The Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey Chaucer, ed. Coghill (978-0140424386)
    Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. B, 9th edition , ed. Greenblatt & Christ (978-0393912500)
    The Tempest, Norton Critical Editions, William Shakespeare, ed. Hulme & Sherman (978-0393978193)
    Oroonoko; or, The Royal Slave, Bedford Cultural Editions, Aphra Behn, ed. Gallagher (978-031210813)