|Semester and Year||SP 2011|
|Time||3:30 PM - 4:45 PM|
The early modern period in Europe witnessed an explosion of writing about the possibility of freedom and the forms of tyranny and enslavement that restricted it. Our goal is to explore the representation of authority, rebellion, and freedom in both its worldly and textual forms and to investigate how the worldly and textual become entangled in one another. Focusing on writers from France, England, and Spain, we will explore literature that represents and responds to rebellion against rulers, resistance by women to patriarchal authority, class struggles on both sides of the Atlantic, conflicts with Native Americans, and slave rebellions. We will also discuss Europeans who rebel against their own culture and choose that of the natives they encounter, Europeans resisting other Europeans’ claims to newly “discovered” territories, and colonial resistance to economic imperialism. Our reading will also include imaginative literary experiments in what political, economic, and other kinds of community could emerge when oppressive authority is eliminated. Though our readings will focus primarily on a variety of genres from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, we will also likely read some works of classical political theory in order to see how writers in this later period both borrowed from, and rebelled against, earlier theories of authority and good government. Primary texts will likely include: Shakespeare, Coriolanus ; Elizabeth Cary, The Tragedy of Mariam ; Marguerite de Navarre, The Heptameron ; Aphra Behn, The Widow Ranter ; Jean de Léry, History of a Voyage to the Land of Brazil ; Cabeza de Vaca, Shipwrecks; Bartolomé de las Casas, A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies ; John Milton, Paradise Lost ; as well as additional selections from Locke, Winstanley, Grotius, and others.
Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)