Penn Arts & Sciences Logo

Ironic Romance

ENGL 251.401
instructor(s):
fulfills requirements:
Sector 2: Difference and Diaspora of the Standard Major
Sector 5: 19th Century Literature of the Standard Major
Pre-1900 Seminar Requirement of the Standard Major
Elective Seminar of the Standard Major

Romance is a palatable fictional mode in the nineteenth century. Since it endorses narrative symmetry, moral justice, emotional fulfillment, and true love, it was especially imposed on woman writers, despite--or because of--the fact that the genre breeds delusion and self-destructive fantasies in its readers. We will read a series of novels in which the author subverts her or his romance conventions, including works by Jane Austen, Flaubert, Mary Braddon, Daphne du Maurier, and perhaps Nabokov.