ENGL BC3166 Seventeenth-Century Prose and Poetry. 3 points.
Not offered during 2019-20 academic year.
The seventeenth-century produced great lyric poetry exploring love and desire, doubt and faith, sex and God. It was also a century of intellectual, political, and religious revolutions, giving birth to modern ways of thinking. We will read poetry by John Donne, Aemelia Lanyer, George Herbert, Robert Herrick, Andrew Marvell, but we will begin with extended attention to Donne, whose poetry continues to influence contemporary poetry. For science, politics, religion, and philosophy and how they are intertwined, we will read prose by Francis Bacon (on “modern experimental science”) and Thomas Browne (on science and faith), Thomas Hobbes (government as the solution to a brutish life) and the radical "Levelers" (early communists), “mad” Margaret Cavendish, and the Quaker Margaret Fell (defense of women’s right to preach). Fascinating readings, understood in their historical context with a sense of their current resonance.