ENG 449/529 Forms of Feeling in the Renaissance
Course Restrictions: Graduate Standing for 529
2 Winston Hall
Instructor: Dr. Margaret Simon
Office Hours: Tompkins 264 T,Th 11-12 and by appointment
Office Phone: 919-513-7930
From the mix-tape to the mashup, cardboard picket signs to social media revolutions, we are accustomed to expressing our sentiments through a variety of mediated forms. As these forms respond to our needs to communicate, so too do they structure how our feelings can be expressed. This dynamic pervades today’s rapidly changing media climate, but it has deep roots in textual and literary culture. This course investigates the relations between forms and feeling in an earlier historical context, the English Renaissance, during which literary authors and essayists reckoned with the expressive possibilities and limitations of a variety of emerging generic and textual conditions. Attention to these dynamics can offer us a critical platform for thinking about the relations of form and content, whether in historical or contemporary contexts.
The development and adaptation of new literary forms hit a fever pitch in sixteenth-century England. At the same time, the period saw an intensification of theorizing about how and why we feel the ways that we do. Theories of emotion were everywhere and were constantly in flux, particularly with the publication in 1543 of Vasalius’s De Humani Corporis Fabrica which challenged a purely humoral model for understanding the body. We’ll come to grips with humoral theory, neo-platonic and Aristotelian views on the emotions, the skepticism of a thinker like Montaigne, the public functions of affect through Castiglione’s wildly popular Book of the Courtier, and will use these contexts to inform our reading of the period’s signal works of poetry and prose. Along the way, we will consider the implications of the differing formats and editions in which these texts appeared, from the poetic miscellany, to the “coterie” manuscript, to the single-authored collection.
All humanities courses at NCSU endeavor to accomplish the objectives listed below. For more information see: http://oucc.ncsu.edu/gep-hum
1. Engage the human experience through the interpretation of human culture and
2. Become aware of the act of interpretation itself as a critical form of knowing in the humanities.
3. Make academic arguments about the human experience using reasons and evidence for supporting those reasons that are appropriate to the humanities.
By the end of the course students who have attended class, taken good notes, read the material, and studied will (objectives specific to each unit are included in the course schedule below):
• have read and understand a broad range of prose and verse texts from the sixteenth century.
• understand the themes, conventions of genre, varieties of form, and literary critical terms relevant to these readings.
• be familiar with the social, historical, and cultural contexts for readings through individual research and presentations by the instructor.
• be familiar with additional scholarly views on given primary texts through course readings, individual research, and presentations by peers.
• develop the critical thinking skills necessary to analyze literature of the period both orally and in writing.
• understand the expectations for scholarly work in literature, through presenting a conference-style paper, submitting an article-length essay or equivalent assignment, writing abstracts, and teaching material to the class.
Grade Distribution (assignment descriptions below):
Class preparation and participation 15%
Critical article précis and presentation 15%
Teaching practicum 10%
Paper for in-class symposium (c. 2000 words) 25%
Final paper or project (expanded from symposium paper; c. 4000 words) 35%
Course Completion: All work must be completed in order to pass the class.
A+ 97-100, A = 94-96%, A-= 90-92%, B+ = 87-89%, B = 83-86%, B- = 80-82%, C+ = 77-79%, C = 73-76%, C- = 70-72%, D+ = 67-69%, D = 63-66%, D-: 60- 52 F = 0-59%
The Broadview Anthology of Sixteenth Century Poetry & Prose (Broadview Anthologies of English Literature) ISBN-10: 1551111624 Approx. $60 on Amazon
Other course texts will be made available on Moodle or through library and online reserves.
Assignment Overviews (detailed instructions will be distributed in advance):
1. Class preparation, attendance, and participation: This is your class—by this I mean that the work you produce here should assist you each quite specifically in advancing your professional goals. I’ll be facilitating this process, but without consistent and scrupulous reading on your part, the class simply won’t function. To help you in your preparation, each week or so we will have a Moodle forum in advance of class. These will include a
mixture of guided (by me or by you) and free responses to our readings and should give us a firmer platform for seminar discussion. Consider these responses as fairly formal written discussion contributions which engage very specifically with the material (responses should quote directly from course texts) and are about 250-500 words. These posts can be useful incubators for final paper ideas. Posts must be made by 10AM the day of class.
You should arrive at class with all course readings, having read your classmates’ contributions on Moodle, and prepared to ask questions.
We will also work together to develop an annotated bibliography of secondary (and in some cases, primary) resources for research. I will periodically solicit contributions to this bibliography as your own research advances.
Attendance: There is no permissible number of absences for this class. Failure to attend regularly will have a negative impact on the participation grade. Participation is a required course component, and all course components must be completed in order to pass the class (see above), thus chronic absence (in excess of 4 classes) may result in failing the class. Late work will be penalized 1/3 grade (3 points) per day late, including weekends.
2. Critical article assignment: In conversation with me, you will choose a critical article appropriate to the day’s reading, write an abstract of the article (c. 250 words), and present your understanding of the article to the class. You’ll want to foreground any skepticism you have about the argument, express how you see it relating to other course concerns, and end by directing us to a specific passage not discussed in the article which you feel pertains in some important way to the author’s case. The article’s bibliographic information and your abstract will become part of our collaborative annotated bibliography.
3. Teaching practicum: this assignment will give you the opportunity to work in a team to teach roughly half of a class (45 mins). You will sign up in small groups (2-3 students) for your practicum day early in the semester. Two weeks prior to your class, meet as a group with me to discuss your class plan. One week prior to your assigned day you will provide a Moodle prompt for the following class to help facilitate discussion. You are responsible for setting these appointments; failure to do so will adversely affect your grade.
Aside from the Moodle forum, the pedagogical approach is up to you—you may bring in slides, additional primary source materials, use group exercises, dramatic readings, etc. Whatever approach you feel will offer the class a way into the material.
4. In order to share the research you have been conducting with your peers, to practice presentation skills and writing for oral delivery, and in preparation for any future attendance at academic or professional conferences and meetings, the first iteration of your final paper will be an eight-page conference paper to be delivered during our in-class symposium. We’ll determine the topic and title of our symposium and create panels and formats as a class.
5. Final Projects: There are three possible final projects for this course: 1) article-length critical essay (c. 4000 words) which extends the concerns of the conference paper. This paper is a serious scholarly undertaking and should be treated as such throughout the semester. The paper will require you to understand the arguments scholars have made about your chosen topic and to position your own argument within this critical framework. The paper will necessitate extensive research in both primary and secondary materials and we will work together to formulate topics and bibliographies. 2) 2 c. 2000 word historical context reports. These reports will necessitate reading both primary historical sources and secondary contemporary histories. 3) a critical edition of a poem of portion of a prose work that includes an annotated bibliography, critical introduction, and annotated version of the selected text. Depending on student interest and professional goals, these final papers may take less traditional, more multi-modal forms per a digital humanities approach. We will work together to select the final project most appropriate to your scholarly interests and professional goals. While I will not read rough drafts as part of the course requirements, I am happy to do so, or to discuss topics and ideas more generally, at any point in the semester.
Course Communications: I am happy to meet with you by appointment, during office hours, or to discuss course concerns via email. Feel free to just stop by during my scheduled office hours (listed above); if you would like to make an appointment at a different time, please email me. I will return emails within 24 hours (generally more quickly). If you have not heard from me in 24 hours, please feel free to re-send your message in the event that it was not received.
Statement for Students with Disabilities: Reasonable accommodations will be made for students with verifiable disabilities. In order to take advantage of available accommodations, students must register with Disability Services for Students at 1900 Student Health Center, Campus Box 7509, 919-515-7653. For more information on NC State’s policy on working with students with disabilities, please see the Academic Accommodations for Students with Disabilities Regulation (REG02.20.01)
Supporting Fellow Students in Distress: As members of the NC State Wolfpack community, we each share a personal responsibility to express concern for one another and to ensure that this classroom and the campus as a whole remains a safe environment for learning. Occasionally, you may come across a fellow classmate whose personal behavior concerns or worries you. When this is the case, I would encourage you to report this behavior to the NC State Students of Concern
http://studentsofconcern.ncsu.edu/. Although you can report anonymously, it is preferred that you share your contact information so they can follow-up with you personally.
NC State University provides equality of opportunity in education and employment for all students and employees. Accordingly, NC State affirms its commitment to maintain a work environment for all employees and an academic environment for all students that is free from all forms of discrimination. Discrimination based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation is a violation of state and federal law and/or NC State University policy and will not be tolerated. Harassment of any person (either in the form of quid pro quo or creation of a hostile environment) based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation also is a violation of state and federal law and/or NC State University policy and will not be tolerated. Retaliation against any person who complains about discrimination is also prohibited. NC State’s policies and regulations covering discrimination, harassment, and retaliation may be accessed at http://www.ncsu.edu/policies/campus_environ or http://www.ncsu.edu/equal_op. Any person who feels that he or she has been the subject of prohibited discrimination, harassment, or retaliation should contact the Office for Equal Opportunity (OEO) at 515-3148.
Electronic Course Components:
Students may be required to disclose personally identifiable information to other students in the course, via electronic tools like email or web-postings, where relevant to the course. Examples include online discussions of class topics, and posting of student coursework. All students are expected to respect the privacy of each other by not sharing or using such information outside the course.
Online class evaluations will be available for students to complete during the last two weeks of class. Students will receive an email message directing them to a website where they can login using their Unity ID and complete evaluations. All evaluations are confidential; instructors will never know how any one student responded to any question, and students will never know the ratings for any particular instructors.
Evaluation website: https://classeval.ncsu.edu
Student help desk: email@example.com
More information about ClassEval: http://www2.acs.ncsu.edu/UPA/classeval/index.htm
Academic Integrity and Student Responsibilities: While humanities classes encourage collaboration and discussion, your written assignments for this course must reflect your own research and critical thinking. This means giving credit to the source of any language or ideas not absolutely your own. While it is fine to discuss ideas, you may not “borrow” language from your fellow students or other authors without crediting them. For this course, please be familiar with MLA citation style. If you have additional concerns about how to incorporate others’ thinking with your own please see me before submitting an assignment. Cases of academic dishonesty will be pursued through NCSU’s Student Discipline Procedures: http://policies.ncsu.edu/regulation/reg-11-35-02
Students are responsible for reviewing the NC State University PRR’s located at http://oucc.ncsu.edu/course-rights-and-responsibilities which pertains to their course rights and responsibilities.”
University Policy on Incompletes
As stated by the university grading policy, “An IN must not be used…as a substitute for an F when the student’s performance in the course is deserving of failing. An IN is only appropriate when the student’s record in the course is such that the successful completion of particular assignments, projects, or tests missed as a result of a documented serious event would enable that student to pass the course.” In this class, a grade of “IN” will only be given (1) in response to a written student request [e-mail is fine] submitted to the instructor before 4:00 on the last day of classes [remind them what that is]; (2) at the instructor’s discretion; and (3) because of a serious interruption a student’s work not caused by his/her own negligence. The university’s policy on incompletes REG 02.50.03) can be found at policies.ncsu.edu/regulation/reg-02-50-03.
Syllabus and Course Schedule Change Policy: Except for changes that substantially affect implementation of the evaluation (grading) statement, this syllabus is a guide for the course and is subject to change with advance notice.
Course Schedule (subject to change)
NOTE: Unless otherwise specified, primary readings are in the course anthology and secondary articles are posted on Moodle.
Bodies and embodied reading in the Renaissance; Using Early English Books Online and LUNA
Unit I: Renaissance Bodies
Objectives: To understand humoral theory as the organizing principle for the human body’s functioning from ancient times into the 19 c. and to understand the miscellany and commonplacing as the organizing form for various types of written and printed knowledge in the sixteenth century.
Reading: selections from Thomas Elyot (anthology and Castel of Helth EEBO link on Moodle); Selections from Medieval and Early Renaissance Medicine (Moodle)
Humoral Theory in the Renaissance; Assignment Due: Reading Renaissance Texts (worksheet on Moodle)
Reading: selections from Aristotle, Galen (Moodle); Skelton
More early theorists of the body
Reading: Petrarch, John Skelton (Moodle);
Strier, “Against the Rule of Reason”
The body and the passions (emotions); Early modern lyric poetry: literary and political contexts; Sign up for teaching practicum and article presentation; Moodle posting
Reading: Thomas Wyatt, Henry Howard Earl of Surry;
Knuttila, “Sixteenth Century Discussions of Passions of the Will” (Moodle)
Body and mind in a pre-cartesian world
Reading: Wyatt, Surrey, Isabella Whitney
Henry VIII, the protestant
reformation, and early 16th c. literary culture
Article Presentation 1
Wyatt, Surrey, Whitney continued; Anne Wheathill; Juan Gil, “Before Intimacy”
Reading: pages from Oxinden’s miscellany (document and images posted on Moodle); Heather Wolfe, “Manuscripts in a Post-Print Age” (Moodle)
Early modern lyric poetry: material contexts (the poetic miscellany)
Article Presentation 2
Readings: Elizabeth I
Marotti, “Print, Manuscripts, and Miscellanies” (Moodle)
Elizabeth I and the poetry of courtship
Unit 2: Renaissance Bodies and the Circulation of Knowledge
Objective: To understand how manuscript collections of medical and culinary recipes (“receipts”) encoded concerns about knowledge transmission, gender, and the body.
Reading: peruse Catchmay and Corlyon receipt books
Herbert C. Schultz, “Teaching of Handwriting in Tudor and Stuart Times” (Moodle)
Introduction to receipt books; introduction to Renaissance handwriting (paleography) Article Presentation 3
Reading: Leong, “Collecting Knowledge for the Family” (Moodle); peruse Early Modern Recipes Online
In-class work on recipe transcription; Moodle posting
Reading: Sir Walter Raleigh; Montaigne, “To the Reader,” “Of Cannibals,” “On the Power of the Imagination,” “Of Books” (Moodle)
Article Presentation 4
Reading: excerpt from Medicinal Cannibalism; Montaigne continued (“Of Cannibals”)
Article Presentation 5
Unit 3: Physical Encounters; Objective: to understand how The Adventures of Master F.J. interacts with contemporary methods of textual exchange; to understand the power relationship and emotional valence of manuscript culture vs. print; to understand how Renaissance theories of body emerge in literary texts.
Montaigne, “Of Books.”
Transcription proofreading and discussion.
Reading: the letters of Bess of Harwicke; prefatory epistles in George Gascoigne’s The Adventures of Master F.J.
Renaissance letters and letter- writers
Forms of feeling in courtly romance: the prosimetric text
Article Presentation 6
The Adventures of Master F.J.; selections from his literary theory and from Puttenham (Moodle)
Teaching Practicum Group 1 Article presentation 7
Final Project Proposals Due
The Adventures of Master F.J.; selections from The Posies (Moodle)
Article Presentation 8
Unit 4: The Body of the Text
Objective: To explore the formal workings and broader culture concerns of the English lyric sequence through its “macro” and “micro” texts; to extend considerations of representing the body in fictional prose begun in F.J. to Sidney’s Arcadia.
Sidney, “Astrophil and Stella”; selections from Castiglione, Hoby translation; selections from Defense of Poesie
Introduction to the lyric sequence
Astrophil and Stella continued; Christopher Warley, section from Sonnets and Social Distinction
Teaching Practicum Group 2
Article Presentation 9
Sidney, Countess of Pembroke’s Arcadia book I and front matter (Moodle)
Introduction to the Sidney family
Teaching Practicum Group 3
Arcadia continued; Excerpts from Women and Romance Fiction (Moodle)
Article Presentation 10
Unit 5: Embodying Romance
Renaissance Emblems; Edmund Spenser, Faerie Queene
Faerie Queene; section from The Secret Wound: Love Melancholy in Early Modern Romance
Article Presentation 11
Teaching Practicum Group 4
Article Presentation 12
final papers due