Course Details

ENGL 319: The Rise of the Novel

This course traces the development of a sensational, morally dubious genre that emerged in the eighteenth-century: the novel. We will read some of the most entertaining, best-selling novels written during the first hundred years of the form, paying particular attention to the novel’s concern with courtship and marriage, writing and reading, the real and the fantastic. Among the questions we will ask: What is a novel? What distinguished the early novel from autobiography, history, travel narrative, and pornography? How did this genre come to be associated with women? How did early novelists respond to eighteenth-century debates about the dangers of reading fiction? Authors include Aphra Behn, Daniel Defoe, Eliza Haywood, Samuel Richardson, Henry Fielding, Laurence Sterne, and Jane Austen. Prerequisite: One English foundations course and one other 6 credit English course
6 credits; LA, WR2; Offered Winter 2022; J. Leiman