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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : English Literature

Undergraduate Course: Metaphysics and Melancholy: Philosophy/Literature 1689-1764 (ENLI10081)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummarySetting out from Locke's Essay, the course will chart the erosion of religion by a newly energised relationship between the philosophy of "ideas" and literature in the eighteenth century. Topics covered will include the context of Locke's Essay; the rise of a rhetoric of "imagination" in Addison and Akenside; the influence of Locke's political philosophy upon Defoe's Robinson Crusoe; the erasure of the division between "poetic" style and "philosophic" content in Hume; the ideology of the beautiful / sublime in Burke, Thomson and the "Gothic" sensibility of Walpole. One of the principal themes of the course will be the way in which empiricism fostered a culture of subjectivity which, while encouraging a heightened emphasis on imagination in literature, in many ways proves to be self-undermining. At the same time attention will focus on the way in which the apparently subversive and revolutionary implications of Locke's philosophy of matter and sensation came to find a home in Burke's conservative aesthetic, leaving the Romantics to tease out the political contradictions of eighteenth-century empiricism.
Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: ( Literary Studies 1A (ENLI08020) AND Literary Studies 1B (ENLI08021) OR English Literature 1 (ENLI08001) AND Scottish Literature 1 (ENLI08016)) AND ( Literary Studies 2A: English Literature in the World, 1380-1788 (ENLI08024) AND Literary Studies 2B: English Literature in the World, post-1789 (ENLI08025) OR Scottish Literature 2A (ENLI08022) AND Scottish Literature 2B (ENLI08023) OR English Literature 2 (ENLI08003) AND Scottish Literature 2 (ENLI08004))
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Essential course texts
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesA MINIMUM of four college/university level literature courses at grade B or above (should include no more than one introductory level literature course). Related courses such as civilisation or creative writing are not considered for admissions to this course.
Applicants should also note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission. In making admissions decisions preference will be given to students who achieve above the minimum requirement with the typical visiting student admitted to this course having three to four literature classes at grade A.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
This course aims to extend students' knowledge of the relationship between philosophy and literature in Britain through a close examination of how these two disciplines influence each other during the last decade of the seventeenth century and the first half of the eighteenth century.
Reading List
Additional Information
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Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Special Arrangements Numbers are limited to 15, with priority given to students taking degrees involving English or Scottish Literature and Visiting Students placed by the Admissions Office. Students not in these categories need the written approval of the Head of English Literature before enrolling. In the case of excess applications places will be decided by ballot.
Additional Class Delivery Information 1 hour(s) per week for 10 week(s). 1 hour a week attendance at Autonomous Learning Group - times to be arranged
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Tim Milnes
Tel: (0131 6)50 3615
Course secretaryMs June Cahongo
Tel: (0131 6)50 3620
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