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ENG 336 (01) -- The Romantic Age

Link to Mary Anne Nunn Homepage

English 336 (01)                                                               Office: FD 100
The Romantic Age                                                            nunnm@ccsu.edu  

Spring                                                                          Phone: (860) 832-2778
M./W 10:50-12:05 EW 206                                     Hours: M/W 2:00- 3:30, T 12:00-2:00                                                                                                                                   

English 110 is a prerequisite for all literature courses in the English Dept. Beginning with those declaring English Majors in the Fall of 2012, ENG 298 is a prerequisite for all 300-level courses.

Norton Anthology of English Literature, vol. D or vol. 2, 9th edition



Short assignments and Class Participation                   -- 15%
Papers: Paper I (3-5 pp) – Revision due 10/01            -- 15%
             Paper II (8-10 pp) – Revision due 12/3            -- 25%
Exams: ID quiz 10/17                                                     -- 10%
             Midterm 10/22                                                   -- 15%
Final – Wed. 12/12 11:00-1:00                                    -- 20%


Attendance is required, and the Midterm and Final will largely be based on the substance and focus of class discussion. If you are absent up to two times this semester (the equivalent of one week of class) your grade will not suffer as a direct result of your absence. If, however, you are absent more than twice, your final grade will be lowered one third of a letter grade for each class beyond the second that you miss. Note: Your "excused" absences are designed to cover illness and other obligations. Note: You are responsible for what goes on in class, whether you are in class or not.


The grade of an essay will be reduced by one third of a letter grade for every day (not class…) past the due date it is late. 


If you have emergency medical information to share with me, or if you need special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment to talk with me as soon as possible. My office location and hours appear above. If you feel you may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability, please contact me privately to discuss specific needs. I will need a copy of the accommodation letter from Student Disability Services in order to arrange your class accommodations. Contact Student Disability Services, EW 101-04, if you are not already registered with them. Student Disability Services maintains the confidential documentation of your disability and assists you in coordinating reasonable accommodations with your faculty.


As a courtesy, please turn off your cell phones during class unless you are expecting an absolutely crucial call. If you are expecting such a call, please let me know, turn your phone to vibrate, and sit by the door to make it easy to step into the hall and then the stairwell to minimize the disruption of class.


This class emphasizes the treatment of primary sources. I will be asking that you NOT consult sources at all, but given the ready availability of sources online, I include the following to make sure there are no misunderstandings.

It has become very common to begin any student writing project by first surfing the web. This practice, however, can very easily lead to plagiarism, intentional and unintentional. So that there will be no misunderstandings, let me say a few words about using source material.

In general, IF YOU FEEL THE NEED TO CONSULT SOURCES (and this includes web sources), YOU MUST DOCUMENT THE SOURCES YOU CONSULT!! Most students know that one must indicate direct quotations with quotation marks, parenthetical citations, and a list of Works Cited containing the full bibliographical information about the source consulted. But often students believe that one may borrow language from a source as long as one alters words here and there. THIS IS NOT TRUE!! If you borrow sentence structures, even if you make changes to those sentence structures, and then fail to indicate that borrowing, YOUR ARE PLAGIARIZING.

If you borrow IDEAS from a source, even if you completely re-write those ideas into your own words, if you do not credit the ideas to the original source you are plagiarizing. Even if the ideas you use come from class notes taken in some other class at some other institutions, you must indicate your indebtedness with a footnote crediting the original teacher, the institution at which the class was presented, and the year in which you took the notes.

For any written assignment I am glad to review a draft ahead of the due date, but, IF YOU HAVE CONSULTED SOURCES AND MADE USE OF THEM FOR IDEAS OR LANGUAGE, YOU MUST HAVE FULL CITATION IN THE DRAFT!! Lack of such citation IN A DRAFT will be grounds for the same penalties as any other academic misconduct. Citation MUST be a part of your use of research material FROM THE VERY BEGINNING OF YOUR PROCESS.

Should you present some other author’s work, words, or ideas, as your own in ANY of these ways, you will receive a failing grade on your paper, you will be liable to dismissal from the course, and an entry noting the misconduct will be placed into your permanent student file. If you have ANY doubts or concerns about the propriety of your writing approach, come see me in my office hours to discuss your paper. Do not risk permanently tarnishing your intellectual reputation by cheating. Once you plagiarize, ALL other work you have ever done or will ever do will be suspect.

If you do consult sources, your documentation should conform to the Modern Language Association (MLA) guidelines. There will always be a current edition of the MLA Handbook in the Reference Room at the Library. THE MLA HAS NOW ISSUED GUIDELINES FOR THE CITATION OF MATERIAL ACCESSED ON THE WEB. These guidelines include the date on which you consulted the source. Be sure, therefore, that you keep careful records of your research process to ensure that you have all the relevant information when it comes time to put your Works Cited List together. Here is a link to a good, brief overview of MLA citation practices for poetry: http://www.studyguide.org/MLAdocumentation.htm#Rules%20for%20Citing%20Poetry


Courses at the 300-level in the English department are designed to accomplish several goals. Students:

  • explore and comprehend literature of a particular period
  • practice the skills of close reading presented in ENG 298
  • focus on the process of developing critical interpretations
  • focus on the composition of effective written arguments based on a critical interpretation

Our specific goals in 336 regarding the exploration and comprehension of the poetry of the Romantic period will be to:

  • read with understanding and interpret with sensitivity the complex lyrics of the British Romantic period
  • derive from the poetry we read a sense of the “Spirit of the Age,” or what characterizes literature of the British Romantic period
  • distinguish one from another the romanticisms of the various authors whose works we study
  • set British Romanticism into a continuum from 18th-century neoclassicism to 19th-century Victorianism

In addition to some exercises focusing on interpretation and composition, an identification quiz, a midterm, and a final exam, the assigned work of the semester will be two papers offering close readings of poetry. For each paper I ask that you hand in intermediate steps in the process of your interpretation and composition. The main goal for this focus on process is to isolate, identify, and practice the creation and refinement of a THESIS for such a treatment. We will be working on anatomizing the analysis of literature that produces effective critical assertions as we discover the ways these poets create meaning, and the meanings they create.


At various points in the semester I will be assigning specific responsibility to different groups for beginning our discussion of specific works. (On 9/12, for instance, although there are four sonnets assigned and each student will read all four sonnets, each student will also be assigned one particular sonnet about which he or she will be ready to make specific observations, though no student will be responsible for a complete interpretation.) But for all assigned readings, every student should always be prepared to summarize in a sentence or two what seemed most interesting/important/surprising/puzzling about the reading for that particular course day. If you cannot, several hours after having read work for class, offer such a reaction, then you cannot be said to have ‘read’ it. To read in this context is not simply to run one’s eyes over the text, but to have read closely and analyzed what was assigned so as to develop observations, questions, comparisons, or other responses that you are ready to contribute to our consideration of that work.



10-22-11/2       Pre-registration advising

11/5-11/16       Registration

11/20               Last day to DROP a class without permission

FINAL EXAM—Wednesday, December 12, 11:00-1:00

 Link to Mary Anne Nunn Homepage


English 336

Nunn – Fall 2012


I— (Romantic) Poetry     


Aug.    29 -     Introduction—“My heart leaps up”

                        Assign: “I travelled among unknown men” + 2 questions

Sept.    3 -      LABOR DAY—no class

            5 -      DUE: 2 questions

                              “Introduction” (3-30)

                        Wordsworth: “I travelled among unknown men” (307)

                        Assign: Paper I (scan due 9/10, Draft due 9/17, Revision due 10/1)                     

            10 -      DUE: Scan “I askéd a thief”

            Wordsworth: from “Preface” to Lyrical Ballads (292)

                                    “We Are Seven” (278)

            Assign: responsibility for sonnets

             12-       Wordsworth: sonnets

                        “It is a beauteous evening” (345)

                        “London, 1802” (346)

                        “The world is too much with us” (347)

                        “Steamboats, Viaducts, and Railways” (348)

II—Politics and Poetry 

                  17 -      DUE: Draft of Paper I

                              Wordsworth: from Prelude, Book X, lines 689-727

                              Shelley: “England 1819” (790)


                  19 -      Wordsworth: from Prelude

                                          Book VI—“Crossing Simplon Pass” (384)

                                          Book XIII—“Vision on Mt. Snowdon” (398)       

                  24 -      Shelley: from “A Defence of Poetry” (856)                         

                              Shelley: “Mont Blanc” parts 1, 2, and 5 (770)

                  26 -      Keats: “Ode to a Nightingale”

IV—Romantic Nature and the Romantic Crisis Lyric          

Oct.             1 -      DUE: Revision of Paper I

                              Wordsworth: “Lines…” [“Tintern Abbey”] (288)

                              Assign Paper II (Idea draft 10/15, Draft thesis 10/29, Draft 11/12, Revision 12/3)

                   3 -      Robinson: “London’s Summer Morning” (80)

                              Coleridge: “Frost at Midnight” (477) 

                   8 -      Keats: “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” (923)

                                          “To Autumn” (951)

                  10 -      Barbauld: “A Summer Evening’s Meditation” (43)

                              Coleridge: “Dejection: An Ode” (479) 

                  15 -      DUE: Idea Draft Paper II

                              Coleridge: Rime of the Ancient Mariner (443)                                  

                  17 -      ID QUIZ

                        Coleridge: Rime of the Ancient Mariner (443)


                22 -      MIDTERM

V—romantic Romanticism    

                  24 -      Wordsworth: “Strange fits of passion…” (305)

                                    “Nutting” (308)

                 29 -      DUE: Draft Thesis for Paper II

                             Coleridge: “Kubla Khan” (459)

                             Shelley: “Ode to the West Wind” (791)

                 31 -      Keats: The Eve of St. Agnes (912)

11/5-11/16     REGISTRATION

VI—Two Contrary States of the Human Soul

Nov.         5 -       Blake: from Songs of Innocence and Experience      

                7 -        Blake: from Songs of Innocence and Experience

12 -       DUE: Draft Paper II

                            Blake: The Marriage of Heaven and Hell (148)

                14 -      Blake: The Marriage of Heaven and Hell (148)

19 -      Byron: “Darkness” (618)

20-       DROP DATE

              21 -      THANKSGIVING BREAK no class

26 -      Byron: “Prometheus” (xerox)

              28 -      Byron: from Don Juan Canto I (673)

Dec.         3 -      DUE: Revision Paper II

                            Byron: from Don Juan Canto I (673)

                  5 -      Wordsworth: “Resolution and Independence” (330)

                            Carroll: “The White Knight’s Song” (xerox) 

FINAL EXAM: Wednesday, December 12 11:00-1:00

Link to Mary Anne Nunn Homepage

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