This course will explore Edmund Spenser's wild and wacky epic poem, The Faerie Queene. Published in 1596, The Faerie Queene is full of powerful women, knights, dragons, monsters, and more; its rich cast includes both Queen Elizabeth I and a young King Arthur. In depicting a world full of chivalry and adventure, this poem offers striking insights into how Shakespeare's contemporaries understood their society and themselves. Full of beautiful lyrics, comedy, and tragedy, The Faerie Queene shows the many different possibilities for thinking about how Renaissance readers viewed the relationship between poetry and social identity. This poem is thus a fascinating window into Renaissance society even as it explores issues still relevant today, from questions about female agency to religious prejudice to class and social conflict. Students will be offered guidance in developing their own projects to explore The Faerie Queene, and the focus of the class discussions will be determined by student interests. Note: This particular seminar may alternatively count as pre-1700 credit.
Location & Meeting Time
T/TH 10:55AM-12:40PM LEC