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New Worlds and Lost Worlds of the Renaissance

ENGL 031.001
MWF 11

Our survey of English Renaissance literature and culture will center on the events that have for centuries defined the period for scholars and historians: the rediscovery (“rebirth”) of the art and literature of ancient Rome, the discovery of new lands and societies in the Americas (and elsewhere), and the Reformation of the English church.  We will consider how these new and lost worlds helped shape the literary and cultural production of the period.  Texts will include Thomas More’s vision of the perfect society in his Utopia, John Foxe’s sensational Book of Martyrs, as well as drama by Shakespeare, poetry by Edmund Spenser and John Donne, and various travel narratives.  Requirements for the course will include three brief essays and a final exam.

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