Humanities 220

Modern European Humanities

Fall 2017 Syllabus

Texts for this course

Bronte, Charlotte. Jane Eyre (Oxford)
Kant, Immanuel. Basic Writings (Modern Library)
Lessing, Nathan the Wise (Bedford)
Marx, Karl, and Friedrich Engels. The Marx-Engels Reader (Norton)
Popkin, Jeremy D. A Short History of the French Revolution (Prentice-Hall)
Rousseau, Jean-Jacques. Political Writings (Norton)
Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein: the 1818 Text, ed. Butler (Oxford)
Smith, Adam. The Essential Adam Smith (Norton)
Voltaire. Candide (Bedford)
Wollstonecraft, Mary. Vindication of the Rights of Woman (Penguin)
Wordsworth, William. The Major Works


I. Enlightenment

Week 1

  • M: Aug. 28. Candide. Lecture: Benjamin Lazier. "How to Be a Modern Human."
  • W: Aug. 30. The Encyclopedie. Lecture: Luc Monnin. "Diderot's Encyclopedie."
  • F: Sept. 1. Greuze and Diderot's Art Criticism. Lecture: Mary Ashburn Miller. "Delicious, Delicious! Diderot, Criticism, and the Emotional Enlightenment."

Week 2

  • Diderot, Diderot on Art: The Salon of 1765,. pp. 3-7; Van Loo, 7-10 and 14-15; Fragonard, pp. 141-148; Boucher, 22-29. Chardin, 60-62. Vernet, 69-71. Greuze, 96-109. (e-reserve)
  • Lessing, Nathan the Wise.
  • W: Sept. 6. Nathan the Wise. Lecture: Katja Garloff. "Beyond Tolerance: Lessing's Nathan the Wise."

Week 3

  • The Essential Adam Smith. Selections by Instructor.
  • M: Sept. 11. Lecture: Benjamin Lazier. "What's Neo About Liberalism?"
  • W: Sept. 13. Lecture: Maureen Harkin. "Economics and Sentiment"

Week 4

  • Rousseau, Political Writings (selections by instructor)
  • Rousseau, "Letter to Geneva" (e-reserve)
  • M: Sept. 18. Lecture: Benjamin Lazier. "Loving Me: Rousseau and the Difficulty of Being With Others."

Week 5

  • Kant, Basic Writings (selections by instructor)
  • M: Sept. 25. Lecture: Katja Garloff. "Kant and the Problem of Freedom."
  • W: Sept. 27. Lecture: Jan Mieszkowski. " Autonomy and its Discontents."

II. The French Revolution

Week 6

  • Popkin, A Short History of the French Revolution, Chapters 1-3.
  • Abbe Sieyes, "What is the Third Estate" (e-reserve)
  • Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen (e-reserve)
  • Edmund Burke, selections from Political Writings (e-reserve) and Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of our Ideas of the Sublime and the Beautiful (e-reserve)
  • M: Oct. 2. Lecture: Mary Ashburn Miller. “Becoming a Revolutionary.”
  • W: Oct 4. Lecture: Maureen Harkin. "Down With the Revolution!"

Week 7

  • Mary Wollstonecraft, Vindication of the Rights of Woman (author's introduction, chs. 1-3, 9)
  • Olympes de Gouges, "Declaration of the Rights of Woman" (link)
  • Laurent Dubois and John Garrigus eds., Slave Revolution in the Caribbean, pp. 86-89, 120-125, 129-132, 144-153, 188-191 (e-reserve)
  • Laurent Dubois, "Avenging America: the Politics of Violence in the Haitian Revolution" (e-reserve)
  • Popkin, A Short History of the French Revolution, Chapter 4.
  • M: Oct. 9. Lecture: Lena Lencek, "Mary Wollstonecraft:  From Vilification to Vindication"
  • W: Oct. 11. Lecture: Mary Ashburn Miller. "The Haitian Revolution: The Limits of Universalism"


Week 8

  • Popkin, A Short History of the French Revolution, chs. 5-6
  • Robespierre, "On Political Morality" (e-reserve)
  • Robespierre, "Report on Religions and Moral Ideas and Republican Principles" (e-reserve)
  • "The Revolutionary Calendar" (e-reserve)
  • Wordsworth, Wordsworth, Major Works (suggested readings: "Lines Written a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey"; "The Old Cumberland Beggar"; "Michael"; "Ode: Intimations of Immortality"; "Lines Written in Early Spring")
  • M: Oct. 23. The Terror. Lecture: Mary Ashburn Miller. "This is Not My Beautiful Revolution."
  • W: Oct. 25. Romantic Poetry. Lecture: Hugh Hochman. "On the Subject of Wordsworth"

Week 9

  • M: Oct. 30. The Sandman. Lecture: Jan Mieszkowski. "What is Romanticism?"
  • W: Nov. 1. Friedrich. Lecture: Joanna Fiduccia. "German Romantic Art"

Week 10

  • Shelley, Frankenstein
  • M: Nov. 6. Lecture: Maureen. "Frankenstein and the Gothic Novel."

Week 11

  • Friedrich Engels, The Condition of the Working Class in England, selections (e-reserve)
  • Henry Mayhew, London Labour and the London Poor, selections (Vol. 1: e-reserve) (Vols. 2-4: e-reserve)
  • William Whewell, "The General Bearing of the Great Exhibition on the Progress of Art and Science" (e-reserve)
  • Jeffrey Auerbach, The Great Exhibition of 1851: A Nation on Display (Commerce and Culture: e-reserve) (Integration and Segregation: e-reserve).
  • Lara Kriegel, "Narrating the Subcontinent in 1851: India at the Crystal Palace," in The Great Exhibition of 1851: New Interdisciplinary Essays, 146-178 (e-reserve)
  • M: Nov. 13. Industrial Revolution. Lecture: Mary Ashburn Miller. "Classifying Class: Mayhew, Engels, and Labor in England's Industrial Revolution"
  • W: Nov. 15. Great Exhibition. Lecture: Jay Dickson. "The Queen and the Prince Consort Went to the Great Exhibition of 1851, and All I Got Was This Lousy Modernity"

Week 12

  • Marx, Marx Engels-Reader (selections by instructor)
  • M: Nov. 20. Marx. Lecture: Jan Mieszkowski. "How to be a Radical"

Week 13

  • Marx, Marx Engels-Reader (selections by instructor)
  • Bronte, Jane Eyre
  • M: Nov. 27. Marx. Lecture: Benjamin Lazier. "Through His Death We Shall Live"

Week 14

  • Bronte, Jane Eyre
  • M: Dec. 4. Jane Eyre. Lecture: Jay Dickson. "A Person of Interest"