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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Gary J Handwerk
ENGL 527
Seattle Campus


Class description

In Britain, as elsewhere, the revolutionary period was an era of widespread debate and experimentation in the field of education. This was likewise the period when the notion of “literature” as a tool of education took on much of its current meaning, and when distinctly modern theories of reading began to be formulated. We will begin by looking at some of the pedagogical background of the era, from Locke and Rousseau to the Dissenting Academies and the Madras system. We will then move on to a selection of texts representing these educational debates—both theoretical formulations such as Rousseau’s Emile and Wollstonecraft’s Vindication and narrative accounts of childhood development contained in early Bildungsromane such as Fleetwood, Frankenstein and the Prelude. We will be considering how these various texts played out contemporary educational debates and responded to the highly charged political climate in which they were written. Texts will include: Rousseau’s Emile, Wollstonecraft’s Vindication, Godwin’s Fleetwood, Wordsworth’s Prelude, Shelley’s Frankenstein, and a few more (still to be determined), along with a reading packet. Course requirements will include outside research into one of the educational theories being discussed in class, and one or more papers on the primary texts in the course.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Gary J Handwerk
Date: 07/06/2007