English literature 2

A.Y. 2020/2021
9
Max ECTS
60
Overall hours
SSD
L-LIN/10
Language
English
Learning objectives
The course is the second step for English Literature major and is devoted to second year undergraduate students. The course analyses the development of English literature, focussing on Augustan , Romantic and High Victorian writers, covering authors active between the 1710s and the 1870s. Students will be taught how to critically read and assess complex literary works. The syllabus includes poetry, novels and dramas.
Expected learning outcomes
Knowledge: the course aims at familiarizing students with the major works and the literary history of the XVIII and XIX centuries, through the literary genres of poetry, novel, and drama. Competence: Students will develop different reading techniques such as close reading (textual analysis) and distant reading (historical and genre assessment). The course also aims at strengthening linguistic competence with particular reference to the critical idiom and the literary language. Students attending the classes will be stimulated to develop their critical and analytical abilities with complex literary texts in order to help them become autonomous readers in English.
Course syllabus and organization

(A-K)

Responsible
Lesson period
Second semester
Most lessons will be taught online on Microsoft Teams. These lessons will be recorded and made available on the Ariel website of the course. Also some video recorded lessons will be uploaded on the Ariel website.
The course schedule will be published on the Ariel website at the beginning of the lessons.
All the materials used during the course will be uploaded on the Ariel website.
Course syllabus
Course title: Imaginary landscapes in English literature from the end of the XVIII to the second half of the XIX century

Through the analysis of poems and prose narratives, the course explores various representations of the English landscape. In particular, it deals with the Romantic movement which depicts the natural environment in new ways if compared to the previous poetic tradition, the novel, focusing on the crucial spaces of the country and the city, and the romance, portraying dark places and labyrinths of the mind. Cultural contexts and literary forms will be examined through a spatial lens, by taking into account both the aesthetic and the ideological dimension. Examining the period ranging from the end of the XVIII century to the second half of the XIX, the course aims at identifying the multiple approaches that contribute to the construction of modernity reflected through landscapes.

It is divided into three units:
A. Romantic poetry: visionary nature
B. Novel: the country and the city
C. Romance: gothic imagination and dreamlands

The course is addressed to third year students specialising in Foreign Languages and Literatures, whose surnames are in the A to K range. It bears 9 credits, and it is not possible to take a 6 credit exam.
The syllabus is valid until September 2022.
Prerequisites for admission
The course is taught in English; the syllabus implies a good knowledge of literary history and the critical skills of textual analysis acquired during the first year. To sit the second year exam, students need to have passed the first year English language exam and the first year English literature exam.
Teaching methods
The course employs the following teaching methods: lectures including close reading and analysis of the texts; audiovisual materials, such as sequences of television and film adaptations or documentaries, etc. Students are encouraged to actively participate in textual analysis and in the discussions in class and in the website forum.
Teaching Resources
General bibliography:
Arturo Cattaneo, A Short History of English Literature (the sections dealing with the movements, writers and texts included in the syllabus)
The Norton Anthology of English Literature (the introductions pertaining to the periods ranging from the end of the XVIII century and the second half of the XIX century).
Other critical materials will be suggested during the course and will be uploaded on the Ariel website.

Unit A
Romantic poetry: visionary nature
Literary texts:
Edmund Burke, A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful (selected passages made available on the Ariel website)
William Blake, 'Songs of Innocence and of Experience' (selected poems in The Norton Anthology)
William Wordsworth, 'I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud', 'Composed upon Westminster Bridge' (in The Norton Anthology)
Samuel Coleridge, 'The Rime of the Ancient Mariner' (in The Norton Anthology)
Percy Bysshe Shelley, 'Mont Blanc' (in The Norton Anthology)
John Keats, 'La Belle Dame sans Merci' (in The Norton Anthology)

UNIT B
Novel: the country and the city
Literary texts:
Jane Austen, Mansfield Park (any edition in English)
Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre (any edition in English)
Charles Dickens, Great Expectations (any edition in English)

UNIT C
Romance: gothic imagination and dreamlands
Literary texts:
Mary Shelley, Frankenstein (any edition in English)
Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights (any edition in English)
Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (any edition in English)

The website of the course is online on the Ariel platform (http://ariel.unimi.it): students will be able to download lessons and other materials. For each unit critical essays on general questions or on specific texts will be available. The website also contains general information on the course.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists in an oral interview. The minimun score is 18, the maximum is 30. The oral exam will prove the understanding of literary texts (through reading and translation), the knowledge of literary history (details on the authors, historical and cultural contexts), and the ability to interpret the texts from a critical point of view. Linguistic skills as well as the ability of making connections between texts, writers and cultural contexts will also be part of the assessment. The interview will be (at least partly) in English.
Students may accept or reject the mark, in this case it will be recorded as "ritirato".
Students with disabilities are requested to contact the teacher as well as the University Disability Services.
Unita' didattica A
L-LIN/10 - ENGLISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica B
L-LIN/10 - ENGLISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica C
L-LIN/10 - ENGLISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours

(L-Z)

Responsible
Lesson period
Second semester
The course will have its own classroom on Microsoft Teams, which will serve as a repository of working materials and as a virtual classroom (if necessary). The classroom code is ufwh2q7.
Online classes (if any) will have the same schedule as face-to-face ones.
Course syllabus
A Bustling World: Social Mobility and Literary Innovation

The course will focus on the literary representations of social, economic, political, and cultural transformation between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Units A and C will focus on some basic types - the "bourgeois picaroon," the prostitute, the aspiring gentlewoman, the rake, the social climber - featuring in novels of the period. Unit B will focus on romantic poetry and politics.

The course is intended for second-year students whose surnames begin with a letter ranging from L to Z. The course comprises 9 credit points and cannot be taken for 6.
The syllabus is valid until September 2022.

Attendance is highly recommended. Some classes will be devoted to interactive close reading.
Prerequisites for admission
The course is held in English and requires knowledge and skills (linguistic and analytical) acquired during the first year.
Teaching methods
- Lectures on historical and cultural context
- Interactive lectures with a focus on textual analysis and close reading
- Screening of relevant movies
- Attendance of theatrical performances relevant for the course
Teaching Resources
General references:

Students are expected to know the main lines of development of English literature between 1700 and 1870. They shall also possess basic notions of narratology and metrics. The following handbooks (in English or Italian at the student's choice) are intended as "tools" for the preparation of the exam.

Literary history:
- Paul Poplawski, English Literature in Context, Cambridge University Press (chapters 3-4-5) or Paolo Bertinetti, Storia della letteratura inglese, Einaudi (part V, vol. I, parts I and II, vol. II).

Narratology and metrics:
- Marco Canani, Francesca Chiappini, Sara Sullam, Introduzione allo studio della letteratura inglese, Carocci or Dermot Cavanagh et al. (eds.), The Edinburgh Introduction to Studying English Literature, Edinburgh University Press.


Unit A: From picaroon to gentlewoman

Primary literature:
Daniel Defoe, Moll Flanders, Oxford World Classics
Fanny Burney, Evelina, Oxford World Classics

Secondary literature (all texts will be available in the University Library, possibly in digital form, unless otherwise indicated):
Sara Sullam, Moll Flanders. Matrici, Mimesis (available in the Department Library and, hopefully, on the Torrossa digital platform, chapters 1, 2, 3)
Judith Lowder Newton, Evelina, in Women, Power and Subversion: Social Strategies in the English Novel 1778-1860, Routledge, pp. 23-54.
Erin Mackie, Privacy and Ideology: Elite Male Crime in Burney's Evelina and Godwin's Caleb Williams, in Ead., Rakes,Highwaymen and Pirates, John Hopkins University Press (pp. 149-79, dealing with Evelina)


Unit B: Poetry, Politics and Romanticism

Primary literature:

William Blake, from Songs of Innocence "The Chimney Sweeper"; da Songs of Experience "The Chimney Sweeper", "The Little Vagabond" "London" (available in Teams "File" section)
William Wordsworth, "Preface to the Lyrical Ballads" (available in Teams "File" section)
and selected parts from The Prelude (available in Teams "File" section)
Percy Bysshe Shelley, "The Mask of Anarchy", "England in 1819" (available in Teams "File" section)
Mary Robinson, "The Birthday" (available in Teams "File" section)


Secondary literature (all texts will be available in the University Library, possibly in digital form, unless otherwise indicated):
Stuart Curran, Romantic Poetry: Why and Wherefore?, in Id. (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to British Romanticism, Cambridge University Press, pp. 209-228
P.M.S. Dawson, Poetry in an Age of Revolution, in S. Curran. (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to British Romanticism, Cambridge University Press, pp. 56-81.


Unit C: The way of the world
Jane Austen, Mansfield Park, Oxford World Classics
William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair, Oxford World Classics

Secondary literature (all texts will be available in the University Library, possibly in digital form, unless otherwise indicated):
Diego Saglia, Leggere Austen, Carocci (chapter on Mansfield Park)
Claudia Johnson, Mansfield Park, in Jane Austen: Women, Politics, and the Novel, University of Chicago Press (avaialbale in Teams "File" section)
Ina Ferris, Thackeray and the Ideology of the Gentleman, in J. Richetti (ed.), The Columbia History of the British Novel (avaialbale in Teams "File" section)
Ilsu Sohn, An Impossible Bildung and the Bounds of Realism and Britishness in Vanity Fair, CEA Critic, 80.1, 2018 (avaialbale in Teams "File" section)



Additional readings for non-attending students:
Non-attending students shall read all the texts indicated above and Riccardo Capoferro, Novel: la genesi del romanzo moderno nell'Inghilterra del Settecento (capp. 1 e 2).

Suggested movies:

Tony Richardson, Tom Jones (1963)
Stanley Kubrick, Barry Lyndon (1975)
Ang Lee, Sense and Sensibility (1995)
Mira Nair, Vanity Fair (2004)
Yorgos Lanthimos, La favorita (2018)
Mike Leigh, Peterloo (2019)

All students shall read one novel chosen from each of the three following groups:
1. 'Condition of England' Novel
· Charles Dickens, Hard Times
· Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South

2. Women's Voices
· Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility
· Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
· Thomas Hardy, Tess of the D'Urbervilles

3. Children's Literature
· Edith Nesbit, The Railway Children
· Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden
· Rudyard Kipling, The Jungle Book
Assessment methods and Criteria
The final oral exam (in both Italian and English) will focus on the syllabus topics. Students will be tested on their linguistic skills (reading and comprehension of set texts), on literary history (with particular reference to works and authors in context), on literary analysis. Presentation skills (with specific reference to the use of literary terms) will also be tested, and the student's ability to connect different literary works and provide adequate context information.
Students have the right to decline the final mark, in which case the exam will be registered as "R" (ritirato"). International and Erasmus students shall contact the course convenor.
Arrangements for students with disabilities will be made with the relevant office.
Unita' didattica A
L-LIN/10 - ENGLISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica B
L-LIN/10 - ENGLISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica C
L-LIN/10 - ENGLISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours