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Nature, Ideology, and Literary Form
ENGL 302
Spring 2007 not offered

This course will explore representations of nature in a broad variety of genres, both written and visual. We will examine how writers turn the raw materials of nature (mountains, seasons, thunderstorms, dusk, landscapes, etc.) to an astonishing variety of imaginative purposes. We'll see how, during our period (roughly, 1660-1800), writers begin to turn to nature as a realm of freedom, solitude, and intimacy. At the same time, however, we will ask why this occurs at the very moment of the "taming" of the American frontier and the domestication of the English countryside into manicured lawns and gardens. Reading will range widely, from the correspondence of Horace Walpole and Thomas Gray during their journey across the Alps to Jonathan Edwards's scientific and religious ruminations on insects, and from the landscape poetry of Gray and James Thomson to Denis Diderot's fanciful tract on the supposedly natural sexual mores of Tahitians. Throughout, we will attend to the different ways that nature writing draws on other forms, especially landscape painting.

Essential Capabilities: Writing
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: None
Course Format: Lecture/DiscussionGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: ENGL201
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None

Last Updated on APR-17-2024
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