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Introduction to Narrative
Nation and Narration

English 201, Spring 2000

Location: [Reed College] [Department of English] [Laura Arnold] Nation and Narration

Contents: [Class Information] [This Web Site Includes] [Description] [Booklist] [Syllabus]

Class Information

Name of Instructor: Laura Arnold
When It's Offered: Spring 2000
Days It Meets: TR 10:30-12:00
Prerequisites Humanities 110 or sophomore standing
Requirements This Class Fulfills: For Majors: one 200 level course; For Non-majors: one unit Group A

This Web Site Includes


This class investigates how mid-nineteenth century American nationalism is constructed and invoked in the diverse literary genres of the American Renaissance. We will use the theories of Homi Bhabha, Benedict Anderson, Werner Sollors, and others to examine the role of narrative strategies and issues such as Transcendentalism, immigration, urbanization, religion, race, feminism, domesticity, masculinity, and nature in the formation of a "national" identity and culture. Throughout the semester we will be analyzing the ways in which art, architecture, urban planning, philosophy, tourism, music, and historical texts from this period enrich our understanding of American Romanticism.


  • Course Reader (available in bookstore)
  • Fuller, Summer on the Lakes
  • Thoreau, Walden
  • Hawthorne, Blithedale Romance (you need the Bedford Cultural Edition)
  • Eisler, Lowell Offering
  • Melville, Moby-Dick
  • Douglass, Narrative of the Life
  • Craft & Craft, Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom
  • Brown, Clotel (you need the Bedford Cultural Edition)
  • Essentials of the Theory of Fiction, ed. Michael Hoffman and Patrick Murray