History and Anthology of English Literature. Liao Haiyan qq:360337745 Tel: 13574610991. Outline. Course Introduction Periods of English Literature The Early History Beowulf The Anglo-Norman Period Geoffrey Chaucer and The Canterbury Tales. A Brief Introduction to Literature.
History and Anthology of English Literature
qq:360337745 Tel: 13574610991
A Brief Introduction to Literature
What is literature?
Why do people need literature?
Howells (American novelist, playwright and literary critic) observed that the study of literature should begin and end in pleasure. Apart from its role of protest, education, cognition and aesthetic appreciation, literature is primarily to give pleasure, to entertain those who voluntarily attend to it. We can enjoy ourselves and get enlightened in the course of reading. The greatest pleasure and satisfaction to be found in literature occurs when it brings us back to the realities of human situations, problems, feelings, and relationships.
1.All the world 's a stage, and all the men and women merely players.
2.It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.
——Jane Austen(1775-1817) Pride and Prejudice
3. Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.
—— Mark Twain (1835-1910)
C. Reading for acquiring knowledge
Literature gives readers not only pleasure but also knowledge and insight into the nature of reality. The readers' interest in reading lies partly in the fact that in the process of reading they acquire a good deal of information.
Literature gives readers an insight into the tradition, custom, beliefs, attitudes, folklore, values of the age in which it is written. Whether it is in the form of a story, a poem, a play, or an essay, literature always offers readers some new piece of information that broadens their knowledge of the world.
演唱：藤田惠美 作词： Yeats(叶芝,1865-1939,爱尔兰剧作家、诗人,获1923年诺贝尔文学奖)
Down by the Salley gardens my love and I did meet.
She passed the salley gardens with little snow-white feet.
She bid me take love easy, as the leaves grow on the tree;
But I, being young and foolish, with her would not agree.
In a field by the river my love and I did stand. And on my leaning shoulder she laid her snow-white hand.
She bid me take life easy, as the grass grows on the weirs;
But I was young and foolish, and now am full of tears.
1) read the original works of major writers;
2) understand different periods of the history of English literature;
3) analyze the text, and communicate their critical responses orally or in written form.
a. analytical approach (poetry, novel, drama, essay)
The elements of fiction include plot, character,
setting, point of view, theme, symbol, allegory, style,
b. historical approach
Week 1 Brief Introduction and The Old-Medieval English Literature
Week 2 The Renaissance
Week 3 William Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, Sonnet 18 &
Francis Bacon’s Of Studies
Week 4 The Literature of Revolution and Restoration & John
Milton’s Paradise Lost
Week 5 John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress
Week 6 The 18th Century Literature & Jonathan Swift’s A Modest
Week 7 Thomas Gray’s Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard
Week 8 William Blake ’s London &Robert Burns’s A Red, Red Rose
Week 9 The Romantic Period and William Wordsworth’s She Dwelt
Among the Untrodden Ways
Week 10 Percy Shelly’s To a Sky-Lark & John Keats’s Ode on a
Week 11 Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and movie watching
Week 12 The Victorian Age and Charles Dickens’s Oliver Twist
Week 13 Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre and Emily Bronte’s
Wuthering Height & Robert Browning’s My Last Duchess
Week 14 Twentieth Century Literature & Thomas Hardy’s Tess of
Week 15 Introduction to Oscar Wilde and George Bernard Shaw
Week 16 D. H. Lawrence’s The Sons and Lovers
Week 17 Virginia Woolf & James Joyce’s Araby
The song of Beowulf can be justly termed England’s national epic and its hero Beowulf– one of the national heroes of the English people.
Beowulf: nephew of Hygelac
Hygelac: king of Geats in Jutland
Hrothgar: king of the Danes
Grendel: a monster
fight with Grendel
(a monster half-human, devouring the warriors while they are feasting. The monster died in the battle against Beowulf)
(she came to avenge the death of her son but was killed by Beowulf )
fight with firedrake
(a fire-breathing dragon. Beowulf came to steal the treasures of earth namely the golden corn and ruddy fruits for his people. he succeeded at last but got mortally wounded and died at last.)
Thematically the poem presents a vivid picture of how the primitive people wage heroic struggles against the hostile forces of the natural world under a wise and mighty leader.
Chaucer’s literary career
He is acclaimed as “father of English poetry” and one of the greatest narrative poets of England. He is the first poet to be buried in Poet’s Corner in Westminster Abbey. We are indebted to him for his most vivid description of the fourteenth-century England.
Chaucer’s life (see page 41-43)
The Romance of the Rose (translated from French),
Troilus and Cressie (adapted from Italian),
The Canterbury Tales ( purely English)
Full wise is he that can himselven knowe.
All classes of the English feudal society, except the royalty and the poorest peasant, are represented by these thirty pilgrims. They range from knight, squire, prioress, tradesman, to the drunken cook and humble plowman, doctor, lawyer, sailor and Oxford scholar. Finally, in the centre of the group is the Wife of Bath, the owner of a large cloth-factory.
It is no exaggeration to say that the Prologue supplies a miniature of the English society of Chaucer’s time. Looking at his world-pictures, we know how people lived in that era. That is why Chaucer has been called “the founder of English realism.”
heroic couplet （英雄双韵体/英雄对句）
The Canterbury Tales
As soon as April pierces to the root
The drought of March, and bathes each bud and shoot
Through every vein of sap with gentle showers
From whose engendering liquor spring the flowers;
When zephyrs have breathed softly all about
Inspiring every wood and field to sprout,
And in the zodiac the youthful sun
His journey halfway through the Ram has run;
When little birds are busy with their song
Who sleep with open eyes the whole night long
Life stirs their hearts and tingles in them so,
Then off as pilgrims people long to go,
And palmers to set out for distant strands
And foreign shrines renowned in many lands.
And specially in England people ride
To Canterbury from every countryside
To visit there the blessed martyred saint
Who gave them strength when they were sick and faint.
In Southwark at the Tabard one spring day
It happened, as I stopped there on my way,
Myself a pilgrim with a heart devout
Ready for Canterbury to set out,
At night came all of twenty-nine assorted
Travellers, and to that same inn resorted,
Who by a turn of fortune chanced to fall
In fellowship together, and they were all
Pilgrims who had it in their minds to ride
Toward Canterbury. The stables doors were wide,
The rooms were large, and we enjoyed the best,
And shortly, when the sun had gone to rest,
I had so talked with each that presently
I was a member of their company
And promised to rise early the next day
To start, as I shall show, upon our way.
Selected readings of The Prologue