English 155A - Fall, 2022

18th Century British Novel

Class Information

Instructor: Connally, Kenneth
CRN: 52759
Time: MWF 9:00-9:50
Location: 118 Olson
GE Areas: World Cultures Writing Experience


What Ian Watt called "the rise of the novel" in the eighteenth century was a crucial development in the history of English literature. In this course, we will trace the evolution of this emerging literary genre from the pseudo-documentary realism of Defoe to the satirical, picaresque, sentimental, and Gothic styles that grew in popularity later in the century. Along the way, we will interrogate the English novel's relationship to the cultural and economic circumstances in which it developed, including the rise of the middle class, debates around gender and sexuality, the expansion of the British Empire, and the radical political ideals associated with the American and French Revolutions.


Quizzes: 10%
Midterm: 10%
Final Exam: 20%
Discussion Posts: 10%
Short Essays: 20%
Term Paper: 30%


Roxana, Daniel Defoe
Joseph Andrews, Henry Fielding
Evelina, Frances Burney
Caleb Williams, William Godwin