Department of English

University of Toronto


ENG347Y1Y  L0101  M11-1, W11
Victorian Literature
Professor Hao Li

Brief Description of Course: This is a critical introduction to various genres of literature in the Victorian period. We shall explore how novelists, poets and (non-fictional) prose writers respond to crisis and transition: the Industrial Revolution, the Idea of Progress, and the “Woman Question”; conflicting claims of liberty and equality, empire and nation, theology and natural selection; the Romantic inheritance, Art-for-Art’s-Sake, Fin de siècle, and “Decadence.”

Required Reading: Arnold, Matthew, Culture and Anarchy. Ed. Stefan Collini. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1993; Brontë, Emily. Wuthering Heights. 1847. Ed. Ian Jack. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2009; Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. 1860-1. Ed. Margaret Cardwell. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2008; Hardy, Thomas. Jude the Obscure. 1895. Ed. Patricia Ingham. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2009; Victorian Prose and Poetry. Eds. Lionel Trilling and Harold Bloom. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1973; A small course pack for the other readings.(Required books are available at the U of T Bookstore)

First Three Authors/Texts: Emily Brontë, Tennyson, Carlyle

Method of Instruction: Lecture and discussion. 

Method of Evaluation: Two essays, one presentation, informed participation, final test.

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