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Survey of British Lit.: The Course


 

Survey of British Literature: This web course is for the use of Fort Valley State University students enrolled in classes taught by Dr. Anna Holloway or studying for the exit examination in English. However, anyone is welcome to peruse the course and even to submit comments and suggestions!

Course Description

This course presents a broad overview of British literature from the 8th-10th centuries to the present. Students will utilize various critical approaches and reading strategies as they examine important authors and themes of this literature and tradition. The course will pay special attention to genre, culture, and perspectives. Some of the authors that will be included in this course are the Beowulf poet, Chaucer, Spenser, Sidney, Bacon, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Johnson, Austin, selected Romantics (Blake, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelly, Byron, Keats), selected Victorians (Dickens, the Brownings, George Eliot, the Rosettis, Pater), and selected 20th century writers.

Course Objectives

  • Identify and apply a variety of critical approaches to literature.
  • Identify the important literary periods, genres and themes of British Literature from the Tenth Century to the 20th Century. 
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the diversity within and development of British culture through the study of literature.
  • Apply various reading strategies to text in order to summarize, synthesize, analyze, interpret, and evaluate the literature.
  • Write a paper on a topic in British literature using MLA style and a variety of sources that shows original thought, research, and an ability to assimilate and synthesize the ideas of others on the topic.
  • Enhance technological skills.

Course Structure

This course includes an Introduction, a section on Reading Literature, and Six Lessons, covering different periods and genres represented in British Literature. The assignments for the course include discussions of each reading, a research paper, two essay exams, and several miscellaneous writing assignments. You will be asked to work through the six units of literature as listed in the schedule below in the Course Schedule. Most units are divided into four sections:

  • Reading Considerations
  • Web Links
  • Writing Assignments
  • Discussions

Course Schedule

Week

Lesson

Topic

1

 1

Orientation/Introduction

2 (6/6-6/10)

2

Old English : Beowulf

2 (6/6-6/10)

2

Middle English: Chaucer

3 (6/13-6/17)

3

Renaissance: Spenser to Milton

3 (6/13-6/17)

3

Renaissance

4 (6/20-6/24)

 4

Mid-termExam

(6/20-6/24)

4

Preparation for Research Paper

5 (6/27-7/1)

5

18th Century

5 (6/27-7/1)

5

Romanticism

(7/5-7/8)

5

Romanticism

(7/5-7/8)

6

Victorian

7 (7/11-7/15)

6

Victorian

7 (7/11-7/15)

 6

Early Modern

8 (7/18-7/22)

 7

Final Exam and Research Paper

 Course Grading Scale

e-Discussions

25%

Research Paper

25%

Essay Exams: Mid-term and Final (15% each)

30%

Misc. Assignments

20%

Renaissance