Long prose narratives began to appear in large numbers in England (and elsewhere in Europe) in the early decades of the 18th Century, and most literary historians distinguish these books from their predecessors as a new form of narrative literature. Since then, such narratives have evolved into a more or less stable format that all readers in our culture recognize and value as "novels." We will read a selection of novels written in Britain from the mid-18th century to the early 20th century and seek to understand the changing nature and structure of such narratives and also their role in expressing the changing social and political culture of Britain. Authors to be read will include Defoe, Richardson, Austen, Eliot, Dickens, Hardy, Conrad, and Woolf. Three papers will be assigned: two 4-6 pages and one longer paper, 10-15 pages.