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Romanticism, Feminism, Revolution (ENGL20020)

Undergraduate level 2Points: 12.5Not available in 2019

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Year of offerNot available in 2019
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 2
Subject codeENGL20020
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject maps the intertwined (and sometimes antagonistic) trajectories of Romanticism and early Feminism, as they emerge in Britain in the wake of the American and French Revolutions. Drawing on prose, poetry and drama from this period (including texts by Byron, Blake, Bronte, Hays, Radcliffe, Robinson, Mary Shelley, P. B. Shelley and Wordsworth), it studies the construction of modern notions of literature, culture, sexuality, emancipation and revolution. In so doing, the subject brings into dialogue late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century philosophies of imagination and reason, accounts of the artist as Satan/Prometheus and Sappho, and myths of the lover as Don Juan and femme fatale. Students completing this subject should have a firm understanding of the literary, philosophical and cultural foundations of Romanticism and early Feminism, movements that have played key roles in the construction of the modern world.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate a detailed knowledge of some of the key texts, genres, interpretative strategies, and textual strategies of Romanticism and early Feminism;
  • relate these ideas and practices to the revolutionary social, economic, and political changes of the 1790s;
  • understand the roles played by Romanticism and early Feminism in the construction of the modern world;
  • apply recent arguments from the study of Romanticism and early Feminism in the interpretation of literary texts; and
  • generate original critical readings of Romantic and early Feminist texts, and communicate these in extended argumentative prose.

Generic skills

At the completion of this subject, students should gain the following generic skills:

  • in research: through competent use of library, and other (including online) information sources; through the successful definition of areas of inquiry and methods of research;
  • in critical thinking and analysis: through use of recommended reading, essay writing and tutorial discussion; through the questioning of accepted wisdom and the ability to shape and strengthen persuasive judgments and arguments; through attention to detail in reading material; and through openness to new ideas and the development of critical self-awareness;
  • in creative thinking: through essay writing and tutorial discussion; through the innovative conceptualizing of problems and an appreciation of the role of creativity in critical analysis; and
  • in social, ethical and cultural understanding: through use of recommended reading, essay writing and tutorial discussion; through the social contextualisation of arguments and judgments; through adaptations of knowledge to new situations and openness to new ideas; through the development of critical self-awareness in relation to an understanding of other cultures and practices.

Eligibility and requirements





Non-allowed subjects

106-218 Romanticism, Feminism, Revolution

Core participation requirements

The University of Melbourne is committed to providing students with reasonable adjustments to assessment and participation under the Disability Standards for Education (2005), and the Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326). Students are expected to meet the core participation requirements for their course. These can be viewed under Entry and Participation Requirements for the course outlines in the Handbook.

Further details on how to seek academic adjustments can be found on the Student Equity and Disability Support website: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/student-equity/home



  • An essay of 1,500 words (40%), due mid-semester
  • An essay of 2,500 words (60%), due in the examination period
  • Hurdle: This subject has a minimum hurdle requirement of 80% attendance and regular participation in tutorials. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Dates & times

Not available in 2019

Time commitment details

170 hours

Further information

  • Texts

    Prescribed texts

    • Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights (Oxford University Press);
    • Mary Hays, Memoirs of Emma Courtney (Oxford World Classics);
    • Anne Radcliffe, Romance of the Forest (Oxford World Classics);
    • Mary Robinson, Sappho and Phaon, in Mary Robinson: Selected Poems (Broadview Press);
    • Mary Wollstonecraft, Vindication of the Rights of Woman (Penguin);
    • Duncan Wu (ed.), Romanticism: An Anthology (Blackwell).
  • Subject notes

    Students who have completed 670-340 Romanticism, Feminism,Revolution are not eligible to enrol in this subject.

  • Breadth options
  • Available through the Community Access Program

    About the Community Access Program (CAP)

    This subject is available through the Community Access Program (also called Single Subject Studies) which allows you to enrol in single subjects offered by the University of Melbourne, without the commitment required to complete a whole degree.

    Entry requirements including prerequisites may apply. Please refer to the CAP applications page for further information.

  • Available to Study Abroad and/or Study Exchange Students

    This subject is available to students studying at the University from eligible overseas institutions on exchange and study abroad. Students are required to satisfy any listed requirements, such as pre- and co-requisites, for enrolment in the subject.

Last updated: 12 July 2019