Seminar for British Literature from 1789 to 1900

Course Number: ENGL 103BS
Prerequisites: Consent of the Instructor
Catalog Course Entry: ENGL 103BS
Quarter: Spring 2011
Instructor: Carlson, Julie
Day(s): M
Time: 2:00 PM - 2:50 PM
Location: SH 2714

This course reads major literary works of the nineteenth century in Britain to consider how literature contributes to altering one’s state. By “altered states,” the course means two things: 1) literature’s role in altering one’s socio-political state (one’s condition of liberty) by supporting and critiquing revolution and 2) its capacity to produce altered psychic and emotional states as part of literature’s contribution to freedom. Here the course focuses on literature’s capacity to stimulate dreams and to serve as a supplement or alternative to other forms of stimulation (drugs, fantasy, travel, sex). The course reads literary texts and texts defining the power of literature in the context of four social revolutions of the nineteenth century: the French Revolution, slave revolts and abolition, the Industrial Revolution, and women’s liberation.