ENG 753: Seminar: Studies in 18th Century English Literature (Units: 3)


Prerequisite: ENG 741 (maybe taken concurrently) or consent of instructor.

Topic to be specified in Class Schedule. May be repeated when topics vary.


  • 18th Century British Literature and Culture

    • 18th century British literature through the lens of cultural criticism. Background in the literature of the period, 1660-1800, and provides a foundation in the questions and methods of doing cultural criticism in an historical period.
  • 18th Century Novel

    • Exploration of the 18th century novel, with attention to literary influence, gender and class, formal issues, and the tension between sentiment and satire.
  • 18th Century Poetry

    • A survey of the many poetic kinds produced in Britain during the eighteenth century, with a focus on both male and female poets, both canonical and lesser-known.
  • Beggars and Cross-Dressers: A Survey of Eighteenth

    • Major developments in 18th century English drama from Farquhar to Sheridan; exploration of the theatre history of the period (acting, set and costume design, stage architecture) to appreciate the historical context of these works.
  • Discord and Elegance/18th Century

    • Study of 18th century literature as it exposed the conflicts and contradictions that produced our modern world. Exploration of poetry, prose, and drama for issues surrounding the law, nationality, sentimentality, woman's role, the country, nature, and taste.
  • Flight to Confinement

    • Journeys through 18th century English novels as they shift from life's open roads and broad providential paths to life as confinement, existence as a cell, grace as inward flight, consideration of developments in novelistic form and characterization.
  • Johnson and T. S. Eliot

    • Tradition and two individual talents, those of Samuel Johnson and T. S. Eliot, converge across time and culture to illuminate the enduring principles, style, and grace of classicism in both literary art and criticism.
  • Satire's Vile Bodies: The Art of Swift and Waugh

    • Brings together Jonathan Swift and Evelyn Waugh, the greatest prose satirists of the 18th and 20th centuries, and explores the literary and moral qualities of the art of satire. Satisfies individual author, genre, or pre-1800 M.A. requirements.
  • Swift's Selected Works, Richardson's Clarissa, and

    • An exploration of the neoclassical satire of Swift, then moves on to Richardson's Clarissa and its critics (especially feminists), and then to Stern's Tristram Shandy and the experimental, pre-Joycean novel.