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Course Description and Policies

Autumn 2017: Classes meet M W F 2:00 - 2:50 PM, 119 Powers Hall

Jump Down to the Schedule

Complete all assigned readings before the class period on which they are listed.

Updates and revisions to this schedule will be announced in class and via Courseweb, and posted here.

Courseweb address: http://courseweb.pitt.edu

Abbreviations:
an illustration of Laura paying the goblins with a golden curl, made by Dante Gabriel Rossetti for Christina Rossetti's Goblin Market

Week 1

Readings due

Assignments due

M 08-28

First day! Handout: Anna Barbauld, The Mouse’s Petition and The Caterpillar

W 08-30

Anna Barbauld, Washing Day

F 09-01

Week 2

Readings due

Assignments due

M 09-04

Labor Day Holiday: No classes.

W 09-06

WikiSpaces: Threaded Writing Assignment 1 due before class. If you were not in class on Friday 9/1, set up a free account on our class WikiSpace using the link and join code posted on our Announcements page on Courseweb.

F 09-08

drop-add period ends

Week 3

Readings due

Assignments due

M 09-11

French Revolution—Apocalyptic Expectations: Overview, + first 6 selections in "Texts and contexts"; with William Blake, "Auguries of Innocence"

W 09-13

Annotation Exercise 1: The class works together in hypothes.is with Anna Barbauld’s A Summer Evening’s Meditation, in our UPG_Fa2017_19cBrit group so you have a clean slate. Look for at least three opportunities to make an interesting annotation that helps to highlight, explain, or illustrate something unfamiliar.

  • Look up definitions of words first in the Oxford English Dictionary (via the Pitt Digital Library Database login). Choose what strikes you as the best-fitting definition for an interesting word, and then also be sure to explain how the word fits in the context of the larger phrase: Why does this word fit here, or what significance does it seem to have in context with the language in the poem at this point?
  • Try looking up unusual phrases in the Credo Reference (Pitt Digital Library database) or with a Google Search, or in Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. As with definitions, in your annotation, describe what strikes you as the best explanation for a phrase, and explain how it fits in context with the passage in the poem of which it is part.
  • Look for images or multimedia that help illuminate a phenomenon being described verbally, and provide some explanation and context (link to their source on the web if you can).

F 09-15

Hypothes.is Annotations on Elegaic Sonnets: Read and provide at least two annotations on the sonnets readings for today. You might note the voltas and how they turn or pivot the concepts in the poem, as well as imagery and language as you did with the Barbauld poem you read for Wednesday.

Week 4

Readings due

Assignments due

M 09-18

Hypothes.is Annotations: Continuing to work within our class group, add at least three annotations on this pair of poems.

W 09-20

Read the poem S. T. Coleridge wrote in reply to Wm. Wordsworth’s Intimations of Immortality ode: in book: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Dejection: An Ode, with The Pains of Sleep, pp. 63-68.

F 09-22

Midterm Exam 1

Week 5

Readings due

Assignments due

M 09-25

Balladry: Sir Patrick Spens (annotated in a previous version of this class here on Genius.com), The Dæmon-lover (This gives a history of adaptations; scroll down to read the ballad in its variety of forms), read Barbara Allen and listen to Altan and Dolly Parton sing it in Irish and English; Lord Randall, with Mary Robinson, The Haunted Beach

W 09-27

  • book: Lyrical Ballads: title page of the 1798 edition, Advertisement, and 1798 version of The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere in Seven Parts, pp. 46-72.
  • book: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (as revised with margin glosses, 1815-16)
  • See Rime as published in Sibylline Leaves (1817)

F 09-29

Rime of the Ancient Mariner, 1818 text: continue discussion.

Kubla Khan (also in book: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner: pp. 58-59)

Week 6

Readings due

Assignments due

M 10-02

book: Lyrical Ballads: William Wordsworth’s poems (1798 edition): Goody Blake and Harry Gill, A True Story and all poems through Lines, Written in Early Spring (pp. 89-102)

W 10-04

book: Lyrical Ballads: William Wordsworth, The Thorn pp. 205-212, plus WW's Note to the Thorn, pp. 287-239.

WikiSpaces Threaded Writing: WW's use of repetition

F 10-06

book: Lyrical Ballads: Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey, pp. 142-147.

Hypothes.is Annotations of WW's Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey: Suggestions:

  • Identify references to natural life, geographic/topographic details, unusual uses of language.
  • See if you can locate images of the area surrounding the Wye River a few miles from Tintern Abbey. (Is the Abbey ever directly mentioned here?)
  • How has poet-speaker’s impression of this place and himself changed? Concentrate on clarifying Wordsworth's language, and on Wordsworth's references to place and time: Where does the poet-speaker represent earlier versions of himself (five years ago, living in another place, etc)
  • Where and how does the poet-speaker refer to the sublime?
  • Where does the speaker of the poem turn to address another person, and who does this appear to be?

Week 7

Readings due

Assignments due

M 10-09

Fall Break: Monday classes meet on Tuesday this week.

T 10-10

WW’s 1800 Preface to Lyrical Ballads (also in book: Lyrical Ballads: pp. 171-187)

Write at least two Hypothes.is annotations on WW’s 1800 Preface to Lyrical Ballads. Suggestions:

  • Define and explain uses of interesting / unfamiliar words and references.
  • Try to boil down complex stretches of language in this Preface in your own words more simply: or raise questions about particularly difficult passages: what questions do these passages raise for you?
  • What passages indicate positive and negative qualities of poetry (what makes for good vs. bad poems, according to WW)?
  • Note where WW uses language from the sciences to describe the ideal Poet or the act of writing poetry.
  • Note what specific capacities and experiences WW claims poets need to have. How are poets different from other people, according to WW?
  • Note what kinds of people poets should be connecting with, and how they make a connection.

W 10-11

Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ozymandias and Mont Blanc

Write at least three annotations on these poems, at least two of these must be on Mont Blanc. Identify proper names (and explain how these fit in the poem), provide images, explain context, but in particular, note how passages might respond to WW’s Lyrical Ballads (and particularly its Preface).

F 10-13

Regular online annotations each day of Frankenstein: three to four per day: highlight and explain proper names and strange words (and their context), raise questions, provide illustrations.

Week 8

Readings due

Assignments due

M 10-16

Frankenstein to p. 101 (through Vol. II Ch. VIII—the end of the Creature’s narration)

Regular online annotations each day of Frankenstein: three to four per day: highlight and explain proper names and strange words (and their context), raise questions, provide illustrations.

W 10-18

finish Frankenstein (to p. 161)

6pm @ Village Hall 118: Frankenstein and Genetics: paired talks by me and Prof. Olivia Long (Biology/Chemistry). Here are my slides on Frankenstein and Textual Genetics.

Regular online annotations each day of Frankenstein: three to four per day: highlight and explain proper names and strange words (and their context), raise questions, provide illustrations.

F 10-20

George Gordon, Lord Byron: Prometheus, So we’ll go no more a roving, Darkness, On this Day I Complete My Thirty-Sixth Year, and The Prisoner of Chillon: scroll down to read the poem first: you can read the introduction and advertisement later!

See also Byron and Orientalism image / map slides

Introduce Annotation and Research Assignment

short reflection assignment on Frankenstein (length: 2-3 pages): Options:

  • Comment on the relationship of Walton, Victor, and the Creature by the end of Frankenstein. What does Walton's frame narrative contribute to this novel--for example to its perspective on science, justice, family, or power?
  • Reflect on patterns that emerged for you in the process of annotating this novel: Choose a particular pattern that emerged in the annotations that seems of great significance as you complete reading this novel, and discuss why it is important to the way we understand the characters or key issues in the novel. Make specific reference to passages in the novel and to annotations by including direct links to them in your paper.

Week 9

Readings due

Assignments due

M 10-23

PDF edition of Byron’s Beppo: a Venetian Story, read roughly the first half, through stanza 46 (to the point signed Printer's Devil. Note for printing: This is 44 pages long and you may want to print this with multiple pages per sheet. I would like you to read this PDF edition because it contains informative notes.

MITH Digital Dialogue

W 10-25

Finish Byron’s “Beppo: a Venetian Story”.

MITH Digital Dialogue

F 10-27

John Keats, The Eve of St. Agnes with Ode to Psyche

Hypothes.is annotations on Keats's poems

Midterm Exam 2 Review Guide

Week 10

Readings due

Assignments due

M 10-30

Midterm Exam 2

W 11-01

Start reading Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights, Chs. 1-5 (pp. 37-71)

F 11-03

Wuthering Heights through end of Ch. 11 (to p. 135)

Present Annotation Research Assignment

Week 11

Readings due

Assignments due

M 11-06

Wuthering Heights through end of Ch. 18 (to p. 200)

W 11-08

Wuthering Heights through end of Ch. 26 (to p. 252)

Annotation Research Assignment: Choose your text to annotate: Indicate your choice with an hypothes.is annotation on our Assignment page.

F 11-10

Finish Wuthering Heights

Reading Quiz on Wuthering Heights (in class)

Week 12

Readings due

Assignments due

M 11-13

TEI Conference

W 11-15

TEI Conference

F 11-17

book: Christina Rossetti, Goblin Market and Other Poems: concentrate on the title poem, Goblin Market, but scan through surrounding poems too, especially those dealing with trees and fruit.

TEI Conference

Annotation Research Assignment: Complete draft round of annotations and choose topic for Research Paper

Week 13

Readings due

Assignments due

M 11-20

Victorian Issues: Evolution: Charles Darwin excerpts from The Origin of Species and The Descent of Man, with Tennyson, intro + stanzas from In Memoriam

Slides on Darwin vs. Religion: Darwin and the Victorians

W 11-22 to F 11-24

Thanksgiving Recess: No Classes.

Week 14

Readings due

Assignments due

M 11-27

Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol (e-book of the Dec. 1843 edition) Staves I-II

W 11-29

Finish Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

F 12-01

book: Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles (roughly first half)

Week 15

Readings due

Assignments due

M 12-04

Finish The Hound of the Baskervilles

Research Paper due by 11:59pm on Tues. 12-05 for Scholarly Annotation Assignment

W 12-06

[TO BE POSTED]: Rudyard Kipling selection

F 12-08

[TO BE POSTED]: Rudyard Kipling selection

Final Exam Date: Wed. 12/13

Final Exam: 10:45am in our classroom, 119 Powers Hall.