Penn State University:
Studies in Early American Literature:
Enlightenment Discourses, Imperial Enchantments
Students in this course will examine eighteenth-century Enlightenment culture, considering the ways in which the invention of "enlightenment" discourse both assisted and contradicted English, Spanish, and French imperialism. Treating Enlightenment in its transnational dimension, we will look at a range of texts, some of them by Europeans but most of them by writers from New Spain and New France as well as the English colonies. The constellation of issues involved in imperialism include the study of race, class, and gender issues, so we will be looking at writers who might have been thought "outside" the dominant discourse of Enlightenment along with those whose works centered Enlightenment culture; genres will include fiction, poetry, and non-fiction. While we might engage some theoretical perspectives (among theorists, Habermas, Foucault, Horkheimer and Adorno), most of the work for the course will be conducted along a text-based, cultural studies model which will employ both close textual reading and much contextualization of the works in material culture. Authors to be studied will include: Wheatley, Jefferson, Occom, Franklin, Haynes, Crevecoeur, Murray, Paine, Barlow, Foster, Tanner, Hall, W.H. Brown, Diego de Vargas, Palou, Rousseau, Burke, Wollstonecraft, Equiano. Writing assignments: one book review, one short paper (and brief class presentation of it), and one long paper (the shorter paper is usually a draft of the longer one on the same topic). N.B. Students who wish to study eighteenth- and nineteenth- century Native American and Anglo-American issues alone might wish to take my American Studies 402, "Exiled in the Land of the Free" (description on door of S36 Burrowes).
E 554.1: Studies in Early American Literature
Fall Semester 1996 Hrs: T 12:30 - 5
Office Phone: 865-2082 (leave mess.) e-mail (only for easy-to answer questions): cjm5@psuvm
ENLIGHTENMENT DISCOURSES, IMPERIAL ENCHANTMENTS
COURSE REQUIREMENTS: In addition to doing the reading for the course (and there's a lot of that), you will prepare one report on a selected topic, and you will write one book review, and two papers (the first paper is usually the second paper, assuming you like the topic and want to pursue it). Class attendance and high-quality participation are expected. There are no incompletes possible.
BOOKS: The following books have been ordered for the class. In some cases you don't need to use these particular editions, but make sure any substitutions you make are with complete texts, not abridgments.
ORDERED AS REQUIRED BOOKS
Paul Lauter, et al., The Heath Anthology of American Literature, Second ed., Vol. 1 (DC Heath)
T. Jefferson (M. D. Peterson, ed.), The Portable TJ (Viking Penguin) = PTJ
P. Wheatley (John Shields, ed.), The Coll'd Works of PW (Oxford UP) - CPW
J.H. St. John de Crevecoeur (Albert E. Stone, ed.), Letters from an American Farmer and
Sketches of Eighteenth-Century Life (Viking Penguin)
T. Paine (M. Foote, I. Kramnick, eds.), The TP Reader (Viking Penguin) = TPR
William Hill Brown and Hannah Foster (Carla Mulford, ed.), The Power of Sympathy and The
Coquette (Viking Penguin)
Jean-Jacques Rousseau (Maurice Cranston, trans. and ed.), A Discourse on Inequality (Viking
Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France (Viking Penguin)
Mary Wollstonecraft (Miriam Kramnick, ed.), A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (Viking
Ed. Adam Potkay and Sandra Burr, Black Atlantic Writers of the Eighteenth Century (St.Martin's)
ORDERED AS OPTIONAL BOOKS
M. B. Norton et al., eds., A People and a Nation: Vol. 1 (Houghton Mifflin) (P/N)
Henry May, The Enlightenment in America (Oxford UP)
Roy Porter, The Enlightenment (Humanities P Int'l)
Isaac Kramnick, ed. The Portable Enlightenment Reader (Viking Penguin)
Sidney Kaplan and Emma Hogrady Kaplan, The Black Presence in the Era of the American Revolution (Massachusetts)
22 Introduction and Background
29 ** IMPERIAL ENCHANTMENT IN NEW SPAIN:
Heath, glance through selections of Cabeza de Vaca, Marcos de Niza, and Perez de Villagra; read "Tales of Incorporation/New Spain" (465-94) and "Missionary Voices" (1209-26) ** report: background on the development of New Spain: P/N, passim; David Weber,Spanish Frontier in North America, ch. 3-4, 8-10, passim; Ramon Gutierrez, When Jesus Came, the Corn Mothers Went Away, passim; Lyle McAlister, Spain and Portugal in the New World, passim
5 INTO THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY: BELLETRISM AND THE DISCOURSE OF CLASS AND GENDER
Heath, Eighteenth Century, Sarah Kemble Knight, William Byrd, Selection of Eighteenth Century Poetry (495-561, 627-704)
12 ** THEOLOGY, EVANGELISM, AND MOVEMENTS TOWARD ENLIGHTENED HUMANISM
Heath, Edwards, Ashbridge, Woolman (561-627)
** report: the First Awakening and Ouaker practice in the English colonies: from P/N passim, and Henry May, Pt. I, ch. 3-5 (42-101)
19 ** DISCOURSES OF ENLIGHTENMENT
Heath, Benjamin Franklin, all selections (708-810)
** report: on a bourgeois public sphere: Habermas, ch. 1-4
 ** ROMANCING EMPIRE
Rousseau, A Discourse on Inequality
** report: French Enlightenment: Spurlin, The French Enlightenment in America; Dena Goodman, The Republic of Letters: A Cultural History of the French Enlightenment
3 ENLIGHTENMENT AND THE ENDS OF EMPIRE
PTJ, Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia (23-232), "Report of a Plan of Government (254-58), and selected letters to Skipwith (349-51), M. Jefferson (366-67),P. Carr (380-83), J. Banister (392-95), J. Madison (395-98), G. Wythe (399-400), M.Cosway (400-12), B. Banneker (454-55), H. Gregoire (517), and J. Adams (533-40) ** report: the program of Enlightenment: from P/N, passim, Henry May, Pt. 11, ch. 1-2 (105-33), and Roy Porter, The Enlightenment
10 ** THE ENCHANTMENT OF EMPIRE
Crevecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer (read the Sketches only if you have time) ** report: philanthropy, race, ideological conflict: Bernard Sheehan, Seeds of Extinction:Jeffersonian Philanthropy and the American Indian, chapters 1-4
17 EVANGELISM AND THE DISCOURSE OF LIBERTY
CPW, Phillis Wheatley, poems and letters (ii-187) [use the Heath for some of the reading, if you have trouble with orthography]
24 EVANGELISM AND THE DISCOURSE OF LIBERTY
Black Atlantic Writers, Gronniosaw, Marrant, Cugoano, and Equiano
[Book Review due Monday, October 28, in my mailbox by 5 P.M.]
31 ** EVANGELISM AND THE DISCOURSE OF LIBERTY
Heath, Samson Occom, Prince Hall, Jupiter Hammon, Lemuel Haynes (932-71, 1066-82) ** report: the Second Great Awakening and evangelical inspiration: P/N; the Kaplans,Black Presence in the Era of the Revolution; Winch, Philadelphia's Black Elite, passim
7 ** ENLIGHTENMENT AND TRANSNATIONAL MOVEMENTS FOR LIBERTY
Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France ** report: dialectic of enlightenment: Horkheimer and Adorno, "Concept, Excursus I-III (3-167)
14 ** ENLIGHTENMENT AND TRANSNATIONAL MOVEMENTS FOR LIBERTY
TPR, Paine, Rights of Man and Age of Reason (201-364, 399-451) ** report: imagining liberated communities: Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities
21 ** ENLIGHTENMENT AND TRANSNATIONAL MOVEMENTS FOR LIBERTY
Wollstonecraft, Vindication of the Rights of Woman Heath, Judith Sargent Murray (1003-21) ** report: the culture of sensibility: G.J.Barker-Benfield, The Culture of Sensibility,passim
28 Harvest Day Holiday
5 ** ENLIGHTENMENT AND NOVELISTIC DISCOURSE IN THE U.S.
William Hill Brown, The Power of Sympathy and Hannah Webster Foster, The Coquette report: print culture and "Republican" literature in late eighteenth-century U.S.: Richard D.Brown, ,Knowledge is Power, passim; Nord essay in Davidson, ed., Reading in America; Warner, Republic of Letters, passim
[Long Paper due Tuesday, December 10. No Exceptions. No Incompletes.]
On Assignments, Requirements, and Grade Distribution
1. READINGS. You'll prepare all readings for the day on which we will discuss the materials. Ideally, you'll follow along, for historical background, in the history book, A People and a Nation, Vol. l. Also, ideally, you will accomplish the reading of the materials upon which your classmates will be reporting. You are not expected to do so, but you are welcome to do so.
2. THE FIRST PAPER. You will prepare your first paper, on a text and topic of your own selection, for the day we are covering that selection in class. For example, if you wish to write on Elizabeth Ashbridge, you'll prepare your first paper for Sept. 12; if you wish to write on Phillis Wheatley, prepare it for October 17. In class on the day we will be discussing "your" writer and text, you'll be expected to comment briefly (about fifteen minutes) about what it is you are exploring with that writer. It could be, too, you'll have decided to prepare your report for that day as well. (That's up to you, but it might give you some good background to do it this way.) Your first paper will be due on the Monday after we have discussed your writer/text. (The only exceptions in due dates are for those who might wish to write on materials covered very early in the semester; if you wish to write on something you read for classes on Aug. 29 or Sept. 5, you have until Sept. 16 to turn your first paper in.) That will give you the weekend following your brief comments and class discussion to get your paper into final shape to be turned in.
3. IN-CLASS REPORT. You'll prepare one report for the class on materials assigned on the syllabus. You are welcome to do additional background reading of your own, but you will want to cover the assigned materials for the report first, before going on to the other readings. See the separate sheet on preparing the report for the class. N.B. You might consider preparing the report for the day on which "your" writer/text is up for class discussion, for that will be the target date for your first, short paper.
4. THE BOOK REVIEW. You will write one book review on a recent scholarly book (i.e., published 1993 or later) of your choice. The book review will be an academic review, and it will be scholarly in orientation. Your book will be one of your own selection, a secondary study of a text, writer, or concept/issue of interest to you. Why not write your book review on a book you'll want to read for your papers for this class? You will prepare your review as if you were writing it "for" a journal. That is, you'll want to familiarize yourself with the journals that carry reviews of books in the field. These journals include Early American Literature and American Literature, Eighteenth-Century Studies, American Historical Review, Journal of American History, American Literary History, the New England Quarterly, American Quarterly, William and Mary Quarterly, and others. You'll try to determine for yourself the "style" typically used for reviews in the journal of your choice. See additional directions on the writing of book reviews. See the handout for additional instructions about the book review.
5. THE SECOND PAPER, THE SEMINAR PAPER. Why not make this paper a revision and extension of what you did with the first one? In handling it this way, you'd provide yourself an opportunity to "workshop" the first paper, taking advantage of class comments about the materials and my own comments about your work in order to prepare a more "finished," potentially publishable paper.
6. CLASS PARTICIPATION. Class participation of a high quality is expected. This doesn't mean you are expected to know already the materials we are covering; it does mean that you are asked to think carefully about the materials you're reading and venture sometimes in addressing questions and concerns that arise in the classroom discussion. There are few "right" and "wrong" answers in interpreting these materials; talking about them with an informed group of people like colleagues in class assists the overall learning process. Class participation helps us all learn. We will preserve what might be called "civil discourse" in this class at all times. Disagreements are okay; disparagements are not.
7. THE FINAL GRADE. Your final grade for the course will be an average, of equal parts, of the grades you have received for the book review, the first paper, and the second paper. If your report is excellent, that will help especially if your case is borderline; if your report is terrible, this too is likely to show in the final grade.
8. ON WRITING PAPERS. Choose a manual of style--either the Chicago Manual or the MLA Style Manual--and follow that for annotations and other scholarly matters. Always prefer endnotes to footnotes in typescripts. Do choose a particular style manual to follow, and follow it well.
Notice the assumption that you will NEED a style manual; it implies that you will be writing "scholarly" papers: You'll be looking through scholarly materials so that you can be aware of what has been written on your topic. In this field, it is NOT impossible to read EVERYTHING WRITTEN 1N THE TWENTIETH CENTURY (if not everything EVER written) about the materials you'll be working on for your paper. There are, admittedly, some exceptions--like Franklin, maybe, or Jefferson. But for the most part, you should consider that it is possible to get through all s