English 10A-2 - Winter, 2017

Literatures in English I: to 1700

Class Information

Instructor: O'Neil, Timothy
CRN: 22756
Time: MWF 10:00-10:50
Location: 141 Olson


    The aim of this course is prepare you for advanced study in English literature. Our focus will be literature written in English before 1700, a period of fascinating historical, political, social, and linguistic transformation. We will read texts from a range of authors and genres that reflect, address, and helped produce these changes. Topics we will consider include: the development of both the English language and literary genres; material culture and the history of the book; gender and sexuality; the status of the monarchy during periods of political growth and unrest; and women’s participation in the literary world. Of paramount importance will be students’ development of skills in reading, discussing, and writing about the literature. Specifically, we will work on three kinds of skills: (1) seeing a big picture by spanning time and surveying the globe to track the emergence, development, and dissemination of the English language and its literatures; (2) focusing carefully on key literary texts and some strategies for interpreting them, or “close reading,” of poetry, prose, and drama; and (3) positioning your interpretation of a literary text in relation to other scholarship on it.


    20% - Paper #1
    20% - Paper #2
    20% - Paper #3
    20% - Homework
    10% - Small bibliographical project
    10% - Final


    The Norton Anthology of English Literature (Ninth Edition) (Vol. 1), Greenblatt (Ed.)