Brief Description of Course: This course will study the representation of memory and memorialization in selected texts of the long Romantic period. We will study poetry as well as prose. The various rapid changes that occurred during this period affected political, social and cultural structures, and memory came to be regarded as a crucial means of establishing stability and meaning. Memory, then, is an important category for history, self-understanding, and cultural understanding. It also opens up various tensions, for the uses of memory can also be connected to sentimentalism, xenophobia, and self-absorption. Its implication in the shaping of history can also be connected to the abuses of power. We will survey the various ways in which memory is intimately related to the very idea of civilization in the Romantic period.
Required Reading: Required reading will include such texts as William Godwin, Caleb Williams; Jane Austen, Persuasion; William Wordsworth, The Prelude; Lord Byron, Manfred; Felicia Hemans, Records of Woman; Lord Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam.
First Three Authors/Texts:Jane Austen, Persuasion; poems from Felicia Hemans, Records of Woman
Method of Evaluation: Seminar presentation, with write-up (25%), class discussion (10%), abstract/early outline of paper (15%), 12-page final research paper (50%).