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Women in English Literature 1660-1800

Class at Faculty of Arts |



The principal aim is to provide a historical perspective on the situation of women and women writers in the eighteenth century. We will study the historical background of the construction of femininity and discuss women's contribution to period literature. A range of genres will be examined, with a focus on the short novel and poetry. Throughout the course women's writing will be viewed in close connection to the established canonical texts, and as an inherent part of the broad eighteenth-century literary spectrum.


Aphra Behn - Oroonoko

Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle - from The Blazing World

Charlotte Lennox - from The Female Quixote

Mary Wollstonecraft - Mary and The Wrongs of Woman; from A Vindication of the Rights of Women

Elizabeth Inchbald - A Simple Story


Active participation in the course, one oral presentation (analysis of critical source), an essay on a chosen topic.