English 252, Earlier British Literature:

The Restoration and Eighteenth Century

Occasional Spring or Fall Semesters

"In my early years I read very hard.
It is a sad reflection, but a true one,
that I knew almost as much at eighteen
as I do now."
--20 July 1763

 "All intellectual improvement
arises from leisure."
--13 April 1773

Sections in this document:

Reading and Topic Schedule
Exams and Due Dates
Download Links

10 - 10:50 MWF HHH 230
Instructor: Marty Wood
Office: HHH 433
Hours: 9-10 M,W;
and by appointment
Phone: (715)836-2639
email: mwood@uwec.edu

Required Texts

The following must be purchased at the bookstore:

The following is available from the textbook rental system:

One of the following optional texts will be used for the term paper:


Course Goals:

The primary aim of this course is introduce students to the literature and culture of eighteenth-century England. Upon completion of the course, successful students should be able to encounter greater and lesser literary texts of the period and analyze them in their aesthetic and cultural contexts. A second aim is to encourage students to develop disciplined, critical habits of mind and expression.

Course Assignments:


The four assignments listed above will each count for 10%, 20%, 30%, and 40% of your grade. You will decide which assignment counts for which percentage. (One exception: English majors and minors cannot count the term paper as 10% of their grade.)

You may have three weeks (that is, until September 23) to decide which percentage you will assess to each assignment. Before that deadline you and I will meet to discuss your decision and to agree on an appropriate contract. You will not be able to change the agreement later.

If you would like to see a more elaborate statement of my thoughts about grades and assignments, Click Here.


Students in this course need to understand that attendance and active participation in the day-to-day meetings are essential to their success. Although I will not assess specific penalties for absences, I will absolutlely not be willing to provide additional opportunites for learning to those who have let the classroom opportunities slip by.

Late Assignments

I believe that learning takes place only when the learner is actively engaged in the process. Your diligent work on your assignments represents the kind of engagement that I'm talking about. But I also believe that the most effective learning occurs gradually and cumulatively, and cannot be "made up" in a late rush. Accordingly, I will assess a severe penalty for late assignments in order to provide a strong incentive for gradual learning.

What this means in cold, hard numbers is that I will lower your grade on any exam or paper by one full grade for each calendar day it is late. Quizzes by their very nature are ephemeral and cannot be made up; thus, the penalty for missing a quiz is that you fail the quiz.

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Reading and Topic Schedule

[Note: we will read brief selections from The Commerce of Everyday Life during most of the weeks of the class]

Week 1


Weeks 2-3

Defoe, Moll Flanders

Week 4

Essays and Periodicals: Addison and Steele

Week 5-6

Poetry: Behn, Dryden, Pope

Weeks 7-9

Drama: Goldsmith and Cowley

Weeks 10-12

Burney, Evelina

Week 13

Essays and Periodicals: Johnson

Weeks 14-15

Satire: Swift

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Assignments and other Due Dates

[Note: Quizzes are likely every day without warning]

Week 3, Sept 23

Grading Contracts due

Week 8, Oct 21

Midterm Exam

Week 10

 Conferences for Term Papers

Week 15, Dec 7

Rough Draft editing for Term Papers

Week 15, Dec 14

Term papers due

Finals Week, Dec 21

Final Exam, 1:00 p.m.

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For general information about this or any other English course, see The English Department Web Site

Marty Wood
Professor and Chair
Department of English

UW-Eau Claire Home

Last Updated: 2/7/2006