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ENGLISH 3G06A 18th Cent British Lit&Culture

Academic Year: Fall 2016

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Prof. Eugenia Zuroski


Office: Chester New Hall 403

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 23720

Office Hours: Thursday, 2–4pm

Course Objectives:

Students will acquire a familiarity with a variety of genres of eighteenth-century writing, and, by reading literature in historical and cultural context, will develop an understanding of how literature participates in political, intellectual, and social movements. We will practice methods and skills for the critical engagement of literary culture in general, including close reading, historical contextualization, and the organization of textual evidence–based analysis and argument in writing. By cultivating a better understanding of a culture of the past, students will position themselves to reflect critically on cultures of the present.

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

The Broadview Anthology of British Literature, Volume 3: The Restoration and Eighteenth Century (second edition) (Broadview)—with code for online component

Laurence Sterne, A Sentimental Journey and Other Writings (Oxford)

Method of Assessment:

Evaluation:                                                                            Due Dates

Close Reading Paper 1 (500 words)               15%                 Sept. 22

Close Reading Paper 2 (500 words)               15%                 Oct. 6

Midterm (Passage identification and essay)   15%                 Oct. 27

Final Essay Proposal (250 words)                    5%                 Nov. 10

Final Essay (2000 words)                               25%                 Dec. 6

Final Exam                                                      25%                 TBA

Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

Papers handed in on the due date will receive full commentary and a grade. Those handed in up to one week from the original due date will receive only a grade. Papers submitted more than a week late may not be accepted; please see me to discuss extraordinary situations.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:

ENG 3G06, Term 1

Reading Schedule


Week 1

Sept. 6             Introduction to the course


Women, Sex, and Society

Sept. 8            

“The Restoration and the Eighteenth Century” (xxxiii–lxix)

Margaret Cavendish, “The Poet’s Hasty Resolution,” “An Excuse for so Much Writ Upon My Verses,” “Of the Theme of Love,” “A Woman Drest by Age,” “A Dialogue Betwixt the Body and the Mind” (3–4)

Aphra Behn, “The Disappointment,” “On a Juniper Tree, Cut Down to Make Busks,” “To the Fair Clorinda” (197–201)

John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, “The Imperfect Enjoyment” (299–300)

Week 2

Sept. 13         

Anne Finch, excerpt from “The Spleen,” “The Introduction,” “The Unequal Fetters” (349–351, 353)

Sept. 15         

William Wycherley, The Country Wife (239–289)

Week 3

Sept. 20          

Jonathan Swift, “The Progress of Beauty,” “Stella’s Birthday (1718),” “Stella’s Birthday (1727),” “The Lady’s Dressing Room” (375–376, 377–381)

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, “Saturday; The Small Pox,” “The Reasons that Induced Dr. S. to Write a Poem Called The Lady’s Dressing Room” (603–606)

Sept. 22          

Alexander Pope, “The Rape of the Lock” (555–568)

Week 4

Sept. 27          

Eliza Haywood, Fantomina: or, Love in a Maze, plus context (632–650)

Sept. 29          

Eliza Haywood, Fantomina: or, Love in a Maze, plus context (632–650)       


Living, Dying, and the Gothic

Week 5          

Oct. 4             

Daniel Defoe, A True Relation of the Apparition of One Mrs Veal (304–308), excerpts from A Journal of the Plague Year (338–347)

Oct. 6             

Thomas Gray, “Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College,” “Ode on the Death of a Favourite Cat, Drowned in a Tub of Gold Fishes,” “Sonnet on the Death of Mr. Richard West,” “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” (805–809)

Christopher Smart, excerpt from Jubilate Agno [My Cat Jeoffry] (823–824)

William Cowper, “The Castaway” (886)


Week 6          

Oct. 18           

Horace Walpole, The Castle of Otranto, plus context (

Oct. 20           

Horace Walpole, The Castle of Otranto, plus context (

Week 7          

Oct. 25            Midterm review

Oct. 27            MIDTERM EXAM (in class)


Empire, Trade, and Slavery

Week 8          

Nov. 1            

Aphra Behn, Oroonoko, or The Royal Slave (201–237)

“Contexts: Transatlantic Currents” (825–871)

Nov. 3            

Aphra Behn, Oroonoko, or The Royal Slave (201–237)       

“Contexts: Transatlantic Currents” (825–871)

Week 9          

Nov. 8            

“Contexts: The Abolition of Slavery” (

Olaudah Equiano, selections from The Interesting Narrative, plus context (953–969) 

Nov. 10          

Olaudah Equiano, selections from The Interesting Narrative, plus context (953–969)

Phillis Wheatley, “To the Right Honorable William, Earl of Dartmouth,” “On Being Brought from Africa to America,” “To the King’s Most Excellent Majesty,” “On the Death of the Reverend Mr. George Whitefield,” “A Farewell to America,” “A Funeral Poem on the Death of C.E., An Infant of Twelve Months,” plus context (1017–1022)


Town, Country, and Labour

Week 10        

Nov. 15          

“Contexts: Town and Country” (904–943)

Nov. 17          

Jonathan Swift, “A Description of a City Shower” (376–377)

James Thomson, “Winter” (709–715)

Oliver Goldsmith, “The Deserted Village” (873–878)

Week 11        

Nov. 22          

Samuel Johnson, Letters to Mrs. Thrale (801–803)

Hester Thrale Piozzi, excerpts from Hester Thrale’s Journal (946–951)

Nov. 24          

“Labouring-Class Poets” (Stephen Duck, Mary Collier, Mary Leapor, Elizabeth Hands) (891–903)


Social Feeling

Week 12        

Nov. 29          

Laurence Sterne, A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy

Dec. 1             

Laurence Sterne, A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy


Dec. 6              End of term review