Vast and icy oceans, fields of daffodils, dark satanic mills. The Romantic period (roughly 1789-1832) was fraught with contradictions: country and city, nature and art, beauty and sublimity, revolution and reaction. Authors of the period used their writing to make sense of these and other seemingly irresolvable splits in their world: Coleridge’s Kubla Kahn has constructed an ordered pleasure garden atop a sublime ice cave; William Blake suggested the marriage of Heaven and Hell. Debates about the nature of liberty, human rights, and labor caused political upheaval in the context of an Empire built by enslaved peoples and a domestic economy that commoditized women. This class will survey some of the major British poetry, novels and essays that represent these complexities. Sometimes portraits of hearth and home and sometimes tales of violence and horror, these texts demonstrate a psychological complexity and an understanding of literature and authorship that signals modernity. To better understand historical conditions, we will supplement our readings with visual art and other cultural productions in an attempt to define and understand what the period (or field) we call Romanticism came to be.
Taught by Dr. Thora Brylowe.
Requisites: Restricted to students with 27-180 credits (Sophomores, Juniors or Seniors) only.
Additional Information: Arts Sci Gen Ed: Distribution-Arts Humanities
Departmental Category: British Literature after 1660