ENH2110 - Renaissance literature: Power and love
6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL
Undergraduate Faculty of Arts
Leader(s): Peter Groves
Clayton Second semester 2009 (Day)
A study of the literature of the English renaissance (roughly 1560-1660) through an examination of works illustrating a variety of treatments of power and love in political, social and religious contexts. The first half of the unit concentrates on works by Marlowe, Donne and Milton; the second half considers these and some related works in a series of specific studies of
- literature of the politics and ethics of power, and
- literature of love - sexual and sacred. There will be some emphasis on the representations of gender in the prescribed texts and its relation to the socio-political status of women in the period.
On successfully completing this course students will be expected to have developed:
- A knowledge of the outlook - philosophical, religious, political and social - of the Renaissance and of the changes in it which characterize its sensibilities and inform its literature.
- An understanding of the ways in which a variety of poetic and dramatic texts explore the concepts of power (political, social and sexual) and of love (divine, courtly, neo-Platonic and sexual) in the Renaissance period.
- The ability to respond imaginatively and critically to texts of a period of English literature whose traditions and conventions are very different from those of the present yet which have a significant influence on it.
- An understanding of the differing attitudes to women in the Renaissance as they are expressed in its literature.
- The ability to apply different critical approaches to Renaissance texts and to the preoccupations and themes which they embody.
- The ability to argue, interpret and analyse coherently both in written work and orally in seminar discussion.
- The capacity to meet the general learning objectives of the department.
Written work: 90% (4500 words)
(An optional examination may replace the long essay)
2 hours (1 x 1 hour lecture and 1 x 1 hour tutorial) per week
A first-year sequence in English.