Penn Arts & Sciences Logo

Literature Before 1660

ENGL 020.301
instructor(s):
TR 4:30-6
fulfills requirements:
Sector 3: Early Literature to 1660 of the Standard Major

This course provides an overview of literature produced in Britain from the tenth century to the seventeenth. We will survey the numerous genres, languages, and thematic concerns that were active throughout the medieval and early modern periods; we will examine how these literary texts negotiate overlapping issues of race, gender, sexuality, religion, and nationhood; we will make an active effort to trouble the widespread notion that history--including literary history--is a process of development in which every succeeding era improves upon the previous. No previous experience with medieval or early modern literature required; no knowledge of Old or Middle English required.