1660-1800 was a period of literary upheaval and political drama in England, where the cultivation of taste \2013 whether literary, moral, or political \2013 was a central concern of writers. The commercial possibilities of print and the resultant explosion of the reading public materialized shifts in a variety of environments, and the emergent taste and codification of literary standards were marked by a deeply entrenched popular desire for hybridity.
In this course, we will interrogate that nebulous issue \2013 taste \2013 through a variety of texts, such as mock epics, trenchant satires, riveting periodicals, feisty novels, caustic engravings, flippant opera, and bawdy comedies, to consider ways in which Restoration and eighteenth century England negotiated the intersection and divide between high and low art.
Students entering 2012 and after: satisfies the Literary Studies, Creative Writing, and Rhetoric distribution requirement.
Students entering before 2012: satisfies the Literature distribution requirement.
First-year students require permission of the instructor. (Not offered in 2014-2015.)