University of Wisconsin Oshkosh: English 38-363/563:

18th-Century British Novel

stourhead garden

Fall, 1998

Monday & Wednesdays

3-4:30 pm, Clow 129

Prof. Julie Shaffer 

michelle whitney, gothic heroine

Stourhead Garden

Michelle Whitney, Gothic Heroine

Office: Radford 208
Phone: 424-7288

Office Hours: M:1:30-3
Tues 11:15-noon
Thurs: 12:15-1pm

Course Description, Texts, Course Requirements, including oral requirements,
Attendance and Late Paper Policy, Recommended Journals, Reserve Materials, Schedule
Visit my home page and the English Department Home Page for useful information and links

This course will focus on the origins and development of the British novel through the eighteenth century. We will read and discuss works by as many canonical and sub-canonical authors and innovators of the novel over the course of the eighteenth century as possible during the semester. Through so doing, we will become familiar not only with important figures in the novel's development but also with the main novel genres produced as the novel developed. In our discussions of the development of the novel, we will also place the novel in the context of the period and the forms out of which it arose. We will examine criminal, realist, sentimental, and Gothic novels. Through our reading, discussion, and research, we will get a solid grounding in the interests of the eighteenth century and the ways these crossed with the growth of the novel - the ways these indeed could be argued to be responsible for the development of the novel.

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Required Texts:

Burney, Frances. Evelina (Bedford - St Martin's)

Defoe, Daniel. Moll Flanders (Norton)

Fielding, Henry. Tom Jones (Norton)

Mackenzie, Henry. The Man of Feeling (Norton)

Radcliffe, Ann. A Sicilian Romance (Oxford UP)

Richardson, Samuel. Clarissa (packet)

Wollstonecraft, Mary. Maria; or, the Wrongs of Woman (Norton)

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Course Requirements: Attendance and active participation are vital to making this course work for you and your classmates. Participation will comprise a large enough part of your grade to raise or lower your grade earned from other requirements of this class.

Other oral requirements: You will make oral presentations of article summaries or of discussion-leading questions and observations. Students taking this course for graduate credit will make a presentation on the novels, genres, or themes we will discuss.

Written work: position papers and short papers; an 8-12 page paper plus annotated bibliography; students taking this class for graduate credit will compile a more substantial annotated bibliography and write a 15-20 page research paper on a topic to be discussed with me.

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Attendance and Paper Policies: If you miss more than 2 weeks' classes (4 classes), your grade may drop. After 3 weeks' absence (6 classes), you may fail. I do not differentiate between excused and unexcused absences. If you miss 3 or more weeks of class from illness - 6 classes - you may get a late drop approved by the office of Student Affairs. Very late arrivals and very early departures will count as absences, as will your coming to class unable to add to discussion from utter unpreparedness - from not having read the text or performed written work leading into discussion, for instance. If you are absent, find out what you missed and what assignments were given not be contacting me but by calling classmates, whose phone numbers you will get during the first week of the semester. Papers handed in late may adversely affect your grade unless you have discussed your need to hand a paper in late beforehand with me. Generally, papers handed in late will drop one half letter grade for each day they are late, and after one week, they will receive a fail. Plagiarism, which I invariably catch, will result in a fail on the paper, a fail in the course, and action taken against you through appropriate university channels. Newspaper reading, sleeping, private conversation in class, along with other rudenesses, will not be tolerated.

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Recommended journals:

  • Eighteenth-Century Studies, Eighteenth-Century Fiction (not available at Polk)
  • Eighteenth-Century Life (available on-line and at other UW libraries)
  • ELH
  • Studies in English Literature
  • Criticism
  • Studies in the Novel.

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Materials on Reserve:

  • Armstrong, Nancy. Desire and Domestic Fiction: A Political History of the Novel. New York: Oxford UP, 1987. PR830.D65 A7 1987
  • Brissenden, R. F. Virtue in Distress. New York: Barnes, 1974. PN3495.B74
  • Castle, Terry. Clarissa's Ciphers. PR3664.C43 C37 1982
  • Colley, Linda. Britons: Forging the Nation 1707-1837. New Haven: Yale UP, 1992. DA485.C65 1992
  • Davis, Lennard. Factual Fictions: The Origins of the English Novel. New York: Columbia UP, 1983. PR851.D3 1983
  • Doody, Margaret Anne. Fanny Burney: The Life in the Works. PR3316.A4 Z63 1988.
  • Eagleton, Terry. The Rape of Clarissa. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota P, 1982. PR 3667.E245 1982b.
  • Ellis, Kate Ferguson. The Contested Castle. Urbana: U of Illinois P, 1989. PR830.T3 E53 1985
  • Fizer, Irene. "The Name of the Daughter: Identity and Incest in Evelina." In Refiguring the Father: New Feminist Readings of Patriarchy. Ed. Patricia Yaeger and Beth Kowalski-Wallace. Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois UP, 1989. 78-106.
  • Hunter, J. Paul. Before Novels: The Cultural Contexts of Eighteenth- Century English Fiction. New York: Norton, 1990. PR858.S615 H8 1990
  • McKeon, Michael. The Origins of the English Novel 1600-1740. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1987. PR841.M3 1987
  • Pollak, Ellen. "Moll Flanders, Incest, and The Structure of Exchange." The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation 30.1 (1989): 3-21.
  • Poovey, Mary. "Fathers and Daughters: The Trauma of Growing Up Female." In Women and Literature: Men by Women, n.s. v.2. Ed. Janet Todd. New York: Holmes, 1981. 39-58. PR111.M3
  • ---. The Proper Lady and the Woman Writer. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1984. PR469.W65 P66 1994
  • Punter, David. The Literature of Terror. Vol. I: The Gothic Tradition. 2nd ed. New York: Longman, 1996. PS408.G68 P8 1996
  • Spencer, Jane. The Rise of the Woman Novelist from Aphra Behn to Jane Austen. New York: Blackwell, 1986. PR113.S6 1986
  • Straub, Kristina. Divided Fictions. Lexington: UP of Kentucky, 1989. PR3316.A4 Z79 1987.
  • Todd, Janet. Sensibility: An Introduction. London: Methuen, 1986.
  • Watt, Ian. The Rise of the Novel. London: Chatto, 1957. PR853.W3
  • Yeazell, Ruth Bernard. Fictions of Modesty: Women and Courtship in the English Novel. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1991. PR858.C69 Y4 1991.

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Recommended articles in journals that you can find and read in the library:

  • Crane, R. S. "Suggestions Toward a Genealogy of the Man of Feeling." ELH 1 (1934): 205-230.
  • Greene, Donald. "Latitudinarianism and Sensibility: The Genealogy of the Man of Feeling Reconsidered." Modern Philology 75 (1977): 159-83.
  • Harkin, Maureen. "Mackenzie's Man of Feeling: Embalming Sensibility." ELH 61 (1994): 317-340.

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Very Provisional Reading Schedule:

Week 1:

  • Introduction

Week 2, Sept 14 & 16:

  • Daniel Defoe, Moll Flanders (1722)
  • short paper on Moll Flanders assigned

Week 3, Sept 21 & 23:

  • Moll Flanders
  • discussion of summarizing and of articles on Moll

Week 4, Sept 28 & 30:

  • Henry Fielding, Tom Jones (1749)
  • paper on Moll Flanders due
  • paper on Tom Jones and/or Moll Flanders assigned

Week 5, Oct 5 & 7:

  • Tom Jones

Week 6, Oct 12 & 14:

  • Tom Jones
  • discussion of articles on Tom Jones

Week 7, Oct 19 & 21:

  • Samuel Richardson, Clarissa (1747-48)
  • paper on Clarissa assigned

Week 8, Oct 26 & 28:

  • Clarissa
  • discussion of articles on Clarissa
  • position papers, article summaries on Man of Feeling assigned; due Monday.

Week 9, Nov 2 & 4:

  • Henry Mackenzie, The Man of Feeling (1771)
  • paper on Clarissa due

Week 10, Nov 9 & 11:

  • Ann Radcliffe, A Sicilian Romance (1790)
  • paper on A Sicilian Romance and/or Evelina assigned, due Dec. 7
  • (may incorporate any of the books we've already read)

Week 11, Nov 16 & 18:

  • A Sicilian Romance

Week 12, Nov. 23:

  • Frances Burney, Evelina (1788)

Week 13, Nov 30 & Dec 2:

  • Evelina

Week 14, Dec 7 & 9:

  • Mary Wollstonecraft, Maria; or, the Wrongs of Woman (1798)
  • take-home essay exam on Maria assigned.

Week 15, Dec 14 & 16:

  • Maria
  • Essay exams on Maria and paper with annotated bibliographies due.

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last updated Jan 12, 1999