Eighteenth Century Bodies

University of Hertfordshire * Eighteenth Century Bodies * Kiki Benzon * TTH 9:30 -11:00

This exploration of eighteenth century literature focusws on ideas of gender, landscape and British society of the period. We will examine a diverse range of texts, inclduing works by Austen, Astell, Behn, Cleland, Dryden, Locke, Montagu, Swift and Wilmot.

Week One (27 January): Introduction to the module
Questions, comments and observations: what are eighteenth century bodies? How to do the history of sexuality?

Performance Anxiety

Week Two (3 February): John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, “The Imperfect Enjoyment,” “A Satyre Against Mankind”;  “A Satyr on Charles II”, “The Disabled Debauchee”, “Song”
Margaret A. Doody, “Gender, literature and gendering literature in the Restoration” in Steven Zwicker (ed.), Cambridge Companion to English Literature 1650-1740 (Cambridge UP), pp.58-81

Performing the Self: The Mask of Gender

Week Three (10 February): William Wycherly, The Country Wife

Week Four (17 February): Aphra Behn, The Rover

Sex, Work and Middle-class virtues

Week Five (24 February):  Richard Steele, The Conscious Lovers
Background Reading: Maureen Waller, 1700: Scenes of London Life.  Sections on “Work” & “Children”

Week Six (3 March):  Samuel Richardson, Pamela or, Virtue Rewarded (1740) (extracts); Eliza Haywood, Fantomina; John Cleland, Fanny Hill or Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure (1784-9) (extracts)
Julie Peakman, Mighty Lewd Books: The Development of Pornography in Eighteenth Century England (Palgrave, 2003), pp.5-14.

Homosexuality, Phallicism and the Law

Week Seven (10 March): Alexander Pope, “Epistle to Dr Arbuthnot”;  John Cleland, Fanny Hill or Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure (1784-9) (extracts), Hell Upon Earth (extract), The Trial of Mother Clapp for keeping a Sodomitical House (extracts)
Randolph Trumbach, “The Birth of the Queen: Sodomy and the Emergence of Gender Equality in the Modern Culture, 1660-1750”, in Martin Bauml Duberman, Martha Vicinus &  George Chauncy (eds.) Hidden from History: Reclaiming the Gay and Lesbian Past (London: Penguin, 1989), 29-40

Week Eight (17 March): Project Proposal Workshop

Easter Vacation

Performing the self: The mask of race

Week Nine (21 April): Aphra Behn, Oroonoko; “The Empire of Climate” from The Complexion of Race

Week Ten (28 April): Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent (1800)

Gothic Bodies

Week Eleven (5 May):  Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey (c.1798)

Week Twelve (12 May): Final Review