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Cornell University    
  Feb 24, 2018
Courses of Study 2016-2017 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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ENGL 2020 - Inventing Modern Literature

(HB) (LA-AS)      
Spring. 4 credits.

A. Goldstein.

Does the modern drive to “make it new” mean rejecting every precedent, or sifting the archive for past fragments that glimmer under present circumstances? This course surveys 250 years of English literary innovation, from the heyday of classical imitation, through defiant Romantic “returns” to artlessness, up to modernist experiments in narrative time. What does the most recent half of the English literary tradition have to teach us about our culture’s obsession with innovation and “disruption”? What has it meant to be “new”? Lectures and weekly discussions teach skills of reading and writing about literature at the collegiate level. Texts will include Swift, Keats, Brönte, Yeats, Hopkins, Woolf, Bishop and Adrienne Rich, among many, many others.

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