Romantic Literature

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Romantic Literature

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    English, Literature

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    18 200-level ENGL points

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    A study of British verse and prose of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, ranging from Wordsworth and Blake to Jane Austen and John Clare.

    The study of British literature of the Romantic era (1780-1837) has undergone profound change in the last few decades. This paper will examine the work of familiar Romantic-era writers like William Wordsworth and John Keats, but it will also include important works by lesser-known figures like Anna Barbauld and John Clare. For most of the semester, we will focus on individual authors and familiarize ourselves with specific forms and ideas common to the Romantic era. Along the way we will consider major issues of the day: revolution, colonialism, the slave trade, and industrialization. In the final weeks our readings will shift from author-based to theme-based, as we examine how a variety of writers responded to historical, aesthetic, and environmental changes in their world.

    Learning Outcomes
    -A familiarity with significant writers, literary themes and literary genres of the British Romantic era
    -An understanding of the historical and social contexts that helped shape Romantic literature
    -Mastery of research skills required for advanced inquiry into British Romantic-era literature

    Paper Structure
    All material presented here is subject to change.

    Weekly Overview
    -Week 1: Introduction; poetry of Charlotte Smith and Robert Burns
    -Week 2: poetry of William Blake
    -Week 3: Matthew Lewis, The Monk
    -Week 4: poetry of William Wordsworth and ST Coleridge
    -Week 5: poetry of Robert Southey and ST Coleridge
    -Week 6: Library research sessions
    -Week 7: poems of Anna Barbauld and Percy Shelley
    -Week 8: poetry of John Keats
    -Week 9: Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility
    -Week 10: Representing Ancient Worlds
    -Week 11: War and Exile
    -Week 12: Sublime and Beautiful
    -Week 13: poetry of John Clare; review


    Internal Assessment: 60%
    -Final Annotated Bibliography (25%) and Research Essay (25%)

    A major research project in which students conduct focused research on a topic in British Romantic-era literature, create an annotated bibliography based on that research and then write an essay further exploring the topic.

    -Recitation (10%)

    Each student must memorise three Romantic-era sonnets. All works must come from course handouts or the course reader. Students must choose three different poets (ie you cannot memorise three sonnets by Keats).
    Final Examination: 40%

    All students must take the two-hour exam during the exam period.

    English Romantic Poetry (Dover).
    Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility (Penguin).
    Matthew Lewis, The Monk (Penguin).
    Course Reader (Available from Print Shop).

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.