5300 Topics in Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Literature

ENG5300HF    L0101    

Being There: Liveness and Presence, 1750-1830   

Robinson, T.    

Course Description:  

This course investigates the phenomena of liveness and presence, ca. 1750-1830. It considers what it was (and is) to be there: to exude presence, to feel the presence of another, and to experience the thrill that comes from a sense of participation in a collective moment. More fundamentally, it considers concepts of presence and liveness as they are linked to time, place, and action. We will immerse ourselves in a world of theatrical performances, outdoor gatherings, art exhibits, public readings, protests and rebellions, religious events, and encounters with nature and will do so through their depiction in art, literature, and the news. In our exploration of matters including embodiment, feeling, ephemerality, spatiality, and perception, we will adopt an interdisciplinary approach, drawing on theatre and performance studies and on work that engages with affect theory, media studies, and visual studies. What, we’ll ask, can we learn from depictions of the experience of immediacy and of eventfulness? How might they offer a lens through which to understand cultural production both then and now? 

Course Reading List:  

Primary readings may include selections from Jane Austen, Edmund Burke, Lolita Chakrabarti, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Samuel Foote, David Garrick, Thomas Holcroft, David Hume, Leigh Hunt, C.L.R. James, Lord Kames, John Locke, Toussaint Louverture, Sarah Siddons, Adam Smith, Helen Maria Williams, William Wordsworth, William Shakespeare, Percy Shelley, and others.  
Secondary criticism may include scholarship by Emily Hodgson Anderson, Misty Anderson, Nandini Bhattacharya, Judith Butler, Ros Ballaster, Marvin Carlson, Elizabeth Maddock Dillon, Mary Favret, Jane Goodall, Saidya Hartman, Atesede Atesede Makonnen, Jean Marsden, Nicholas Mirzoeff, W.J.T. Mitchell, Jonathan Mulrooney, Daniel O’Quinn, Peggy Phelan, Amelia Rauser, Joseph R. Roach, Diana Taylor, and others. 

Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements: [NB: SGS requires that participation grade must not exceed 20% of total grade]
Attendance and Informed Class Discussion (15%); Archival Research Exercise (15%); In-Class Seminar Presentation with Handout (15%); Final Project Proposal with Annotated Bibliography (10%); Final Project/Research Paper (45%) 

Term: F-TERM (September 2024 to December 2024)
Date/Time: Friday 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm (2 hours)
Location:  TBA

Delivery: In-Person