English 291c. Literature and the Circulation of Knowledge: The 18th Century

Instructor: Stephen Osadetz
Terms: Spring Term

Mondays, 3-5 pm | Location: TBA

A course about how literature participates in the dissemination of new knowledge. We will be concerned centrally with two broad issues: the cultural foundations upon which the Enlightenment instituted a public sphere, and the methods of literary encapsulation and remediation authors used to make their ideas have broad cultural impact. The aim is to explore the invention and naturalization of some of the most fundamental institutions of the Enlightenment: the public, the private, the market, and public opinion. Authors will include Addison, Richardson, Diderot, Sterne, Smith, Wollstonecraft, Blake. Substantial theoretical readings in intellectual history, book history, and media studies.

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