commonly known as
the United Kingdom (UK)
•It is the ninth largest island in the world
•Is made up of 3 countries - England,
Scotland, and Wales
•An association of nations consisting
of the United Kingdom and several
former British colonies that are now
sovereign states but still pay
allegiance to the British Crown.
•The name "England" is derived from
the Old English name ENGLALAND,
which means “LAND OF THE
• Is a country that is part of the United
•It shares land borders with Scotland to the
north and Wales to the west; the Irish sea is
to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the
south west, while the North Sea to the east
and the English Channel to the south
separate it from Continental Europe.
•Its capital city is London
•Largest country on Great Britain
•Few surviving texts with little in
•Language closer to modern German
than modern English.
•Frequently reflect non-English
•Beowulf, “The Wanderer”
•Works frequently of a religiously
•Written for performance at court or
•Geoffrey Chaucer (The Canterbury
• “The Cuckoo’s Song”, mystery
•Influence of Aristotle, Ovid, and other
Greco-Roman thinkers, as well as science
•Primarily texts for public performance
(plays, masques) and some books of
•William Shakespeare, Christopher
Marlowe, Ben Jonson, Francis Bacon,
John Fletcher, Francis Beaumont.
•Reaction to the expansiveness of the
Renaissance in the direction of order
•Developed in France (Moliere,
•Emphasized classical ideals of rationality
and control (human nature is constant
•Art should reflect the universal
commonality of human nature. (“All men
are created equal.”)
•Reason is emphasized as the highest
•Writing should be well structured, emotion
should be controlled, and emphasize
qualities like wit.
•England: John Locke, John Milton
(Paradise Lost), Alexander Pope (Essay on
Man), Jonathon Swift (Gulliver’s Travels),
Henry Fielding (Tom Jones), Daniel Defoe
(Robinson Crusoe), Jane Austen (Sense and
Sensibility, Emma, Pride and Prejudice).
•America: Benjamin Franklin (Poor
Richard’s Almanack, autobiography),
Thomas Paine (“Common Sense”),
Thomas Jefferson (“The Declaration of
Independence”), James Madison (“The
Constitution of the United States”).
England 1785-1830 America 1800-1860
•Reaction against the scientific rationality
of Neoclassicism and the Industrial
•Developed in Germany (Kant, Goethe).
•Emphasized individuality, intuition,
imagination, idealism, nature (as opposed
to society & social order).
•Elevation of the common man
•Mystery and the supernatural.
•England: Robert Burns (“To a Mouse”), William Blake
(Songs of Innocence, Songs of Experience), William
Wordsworth (Lyrical Ballads, “Tintern Abbey,” “Intimations
of Immortality,” “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud”), Samuel
Taylor Coleridge (“The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” “Kubla
Kahn”), Lord Byron (“Don Juan”), Percy Bysshe Shelley
(“Ozymandias”), Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Frankenstein),
John Keats (“Ode on a Grecian Urn”), Sir Walter Scott
America: Washington Irving (“Rip Van Winkle,” “The
Legend of Sleepy Hollow”), Edgar Allan Poe (“The
Raven,” Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque, “The
Murders in the Rue Morgue,” “The Philosophy of
Composition”), James Fennimore Cooper (The Last of
the Mohicans), Herman Melville (Moby-Dick, Billy
Budd), Nathaniel Hawthorne (Twice-Told Tales, The
Scarlet Letter), William Cullen Bryant (“To a
Waterfowl”), Oliver Wendell Holmes (“The
Chambered Nautilus”), Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
(“Paul Revere’s Ride”), James Russell Lowell (“The
American Transcendentalism (Romantic
Named for the core belief that our spiritual
nature transcends rationality and religious
doctrine; thus, it is found in intuition.
Developed in New England, influenced by
Pro-suffrage & abolitionist.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (Nature, “The American
Scholar”), Henry David Thoreau (Walden, “Civil
Disobedience”), Walt Whitman (Leaves of
•Named for the reign of Queen Victoria, Britain’s
longest reigning monarch.
•Period of stability and prosperity for Britain.
•British society extremely class conscious.
•Literature seen as a bridge between Romanticism and
•Generally emphasized realistic portrayals of common
people, sometimes to promote social change.
•Some writers continue to explore gothic themes
begun in Romantic Period.
Charles Dickens (David Copperfield, Oliver Twist,
Great Expectations), George Eliot (Middlemarch),
Thomas Hardy (Tess of the D’Ubervilles), Robert
Louis Stevenson (The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and
Mr. Hyde), Rudyard Kipling (Jungle Book), Lewis
Carroll (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland), Charlotte
Brontë (Jane Eyre), Emily Brontë (Wuthering
Heights), Alfred, Lord Tennyson (In Memoriam),
Elizabeth Barrett Browning (Sonnets from the
Portuguese), Robert Browning (“My Last Duchess”),
Matthew Arnold (“Dover Beach”), Oscar Wilde (The
Importance of Being Earnest).
•Reaction against Romantic values (Civil War).
•Developed in France (Balzac, Flaubert, Zola).
•Emphasized the commonplace and ordinary (as
opposed to the romanticized individual).
•Sought to depict life as it was, not idealized.
•Mark Twain (The Adventures of Huckleberry
Finn), Ambrose Bierce (“An Occurrence at Owl
Creek Bridge”), William Dean Howells (A
Modern Instance), Theodore Dreiser (Sister
•Naturalism – hyper-realism
•Named for the belief that man is simply a
higher order animal, and thus under the same
natural constraints and limitations as other
•Controlled by heredity and environment.
•Stephen Crane (Maggie: A Girl of the Street,
The Red Badge of Courage), Jack London (“To
Build a Fire”), Upton Sinclair (The Jungle).
•Named for King Edward.
•Some see as a continuation of Victorian
Period; however, the status quo is
•Distinction between literature and popular
•Joseph Conrad (Lord Jim, Heart of Darkness), H.G.
Wells (War of the Worlds), E.M. Forster (A Room with
a View, A Passage to India), George Bernard Shaw
(Major Barbara), A.C. Bradley (Shakespearean
•Reaction against the values which led to WWI.
•Influenced by Schopenhauer (“negation of the
will”), Nietzsche (Beyond Good and Evil),
Kierkegaard (Fear and Trembling), as well as
Darwin and Marx.
•If previous values are invalid, art is a tool to
establish new values (Pound: “Make it new”).
•Writers experiment with form.
•Form and content reflect the confusion and
vicissitudes of modern life.
•Expositions and resolutions are omitted; themes are
implied rather than stated.
Ezra Pound (The Fourth Canto), T.S. Eliot
(Prufrock and other Observations, The Waste
Land, “The Hollow Men”), W.B. Yeats (The
Wanderings of Oisin and Other Poems, The
Swans at Coole), H.D. (“Pear Tree”), Wallace
Stevens (Harmonium), William Carlos Williams
(“The Red Wheelbarrow,” “This Is Just to Say”),
Robert Frost (Mending Wall, The Road Not
James Joyce (Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist as
a Young Man), Franz Kafka (The Metamorphosis,
The Trial, The Castle), Ernest Hemingway (In Our
Time, The Sun Also Rises), William Faulkner (As I
Lay Dying, The Sound and the Fury), F. Scott
Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby), John Steinbeck
(The Grapes of Wrath), Thornton Wilder (Our
Town, The Bridge at San Luis Rey), D.H. Lawrence
(The Rainbow), Virginia Woolf (Mrs. Dalloway, To
•Critical dispute over whether an actual period
or a renewal and continuation Modernism postWWII.
•Influenced by Freud, Sartre, Camus, Derrida,
•Deconstruction: Text has no inherent meaning;
meaning derives from the tension between the
text’s ambiguities and contradictions revealed
upon close reading.
•Some believe it leads directly to the countercultural revolution of the 1960s.
Samuel Beckett (Waiting for Godot), Gabriel Garcia
Marques (One Hundred Years of Solitude), William
Burroughs (Naked Lunch), J.D. Salinger (A Catcher in
the Rye), Kurt Vonnegut (Slaughterhouse Five),
Thomas Pynchon (Gravity’s Rainbow), John Updike
(Rabbit Run), Phillip Roth (Portnoy’s Complaint,
American Pastoral), J.M. Coetzee (Life & Times of
Michael K), Joyce Carol Oates (“Where Are You Going,
Where Have You Been?”), Margaret Atwood (The
Handmaiden’s Tale), Cormac McCarthy (Blood
Meridian), Allen Ginsberg (Howl and Other Poems),
Charles Bukowski (The Last Night of the Earth Poems).