ENGL 330 A: English Literature: The Romantic Age

Meeting Time: 
MW 2:30pm - 4:20pm
LOW 102
Sarah Faulkner
Sarah Faulkner

Syllabus Description:

Despite it's name, the Romantic Era (roughly 1770-1830) was not very lovey-dovey; it was instead a time of revolution. It is defined by great historical events, such as the French, American, and Haitian Revolutions and the Napoleonic Wars, as well as vast ideological shifts in conceptions of nation, gender, class, and race. In response to the tumult of their age, the Romantics developed the concept of nature as a place of solitude, reflection, and peace away from the hubbub of city life, as well as core tenets of freedom and individualism that forged the path for the abolition of slavery, women’s rights, child labor laws, and greater fluidity between social class.

While the Romantic Era is usually defined by its poetry, we will closely read and interpret a wide range of texts: two novels, many essays, biographies, and other non-fiction, and yes—a lot of poetry. We will explore a few central themes: the relationship between public and private (and thus between society/the collective and the individual), the relationship between people and nature, the importance of the imagination, and the importance of the printed republic of letters / community between writers in shaping the age.

Please remember this is meant to be an introduction to the age; I cannot cover it all. I would be thrilled to discuss any aspect of the age/authors we study in further detail during office hours and/or to direct you toward further reading/resources. A final note: I find immense joy in this period’s writings. I will consider my job done well if you also find joy, growth, learning, and community in this course.  

Catalog Description: 
Literary, intellectual, and historical ferment of the period from the French Revolution to the 1830s. Readings from major authors in different literary forms; discussions of critical and philosophical issues in a time of change.
GE Requirements: 
Visual, Literary, and Performing Arts (VLPA)
Last updated: 
June 9, 2021 - 7:22am