Penn Arts & Sciences Logo

Introduction to Romanticism

ENGL 104.601

This class is offered as an online course, an introduction to a period of study that also functions as an introduction to literary study.  Our subject will be that famously ill-defined term, “Romanticism,” which has been used as a catch-all term for the movement, mood, theory, and revolution that followed the Enlightenment and preceded the realism of the Victorian era.  We will consider this period of writing – roughly 1770-1830 – as one of great fluidity and change, as both a reaction to antiquity and a precursor to modernity.  We will read poetry and short novels by Thomas Gray, Henry Mackenzie, Oliver Goldsmith, J. W. von Goethe, William Wordsworth, Samuel Coleridge, Anna Barbauld, Charlotte Smith, John Keats, Percy Shelley, Felicia Hemans, Lord Byron, and Jane Austen.  Students can expect to engage in discussion via both text and voice chat, to annotate and comment on electronic texts, to submit papers (there will be two) online and to receive feedback in the same manner.  In addition, students will complete some short assignments, quiz-like exercises and a comprehensive final exam, all offered via the course website.

fulfills requirements
Elective Seminar of the Standard Major