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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.
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.
Last updated: 1 March 2024