ENGLISH 470 - Colonial and Revolutionary American Literature
Section: 201
Term: SU 2009
Subject: English Language and Literature (ENGLISH)
Department: LSA English Language & Literature
Waitlist Capacity:
With permission of instructor.
Class Misc Info:
Satisfies pre-1830 and American Literature requirements.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This course will introduce you to some key texts and issues in colonial British America and the Revolutionary United States. You will be introduced to genres that may feel unfamiliar, even un-“literary”: the travel narrative, the captivity narrative, the conversion account, autobiography, history, natural history, political philosophy and declaration; more familiar perhaps will be the poem, the Romance and the gothic novel. Because virtually all of the texts we will be reading purport to be “true,” it will be essential to understand the rhetorical, and hence historical and political, situation of the writer and his or her audience. We will therefore look closely at these historical issues and areas: early British colonization in Virginia and the Caribbean, King Philip’s War in New England (c.1676), the Atlantic slave trade, Protestantism in America, westward territorial expansion, enlightenment selfhood, the nature of American nature, and the Revolution. What makes this period in American culture fascinating and difficult is the perpetual clash and reinvention of peoples (Indians, Africans, and Europeans) who were once distant, but who were brought close by European imperial expansion and the Atlantic slave trade; this clash produced New Worlds for each culture. Moreover, what we will encounter are the paradoxes of US national origins: the simultaneous embrace of slavery and theories of universal equality, and the belief in the Edenic quality of America combined with a practice of environmental degradation.

You will write three short essays; final take home exam.

ENGLISH 470 - Colonial and Revolutionary American Literature
Schedule Listing
201 (REC)
TuTh 12:00PM - 2:00PM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

Coursepack Location:
ISBN: 0140390626
Edgar Huntly, or, Memoirs of a sleep-walker, Author: Charles Brockden Brown ; edited with an introduction by Norman S. Grabo., Publisher: Penguin Books 1988
ISBN: 0393970140
Oroonoko : an authoritative text, historical backgrounds, criticism, Author: Aphra Behn; ed. by Joanna Lipking, Publisher: Norton 1. ed. 1997
ISBN: 0486210928
A briefe and true report of the New Found Land of Virginia, Author: Thomas Harriot ; with a new introd. by Paul Hulton., Publisher: Dover Complete 1 1972
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