Department of English, Jadavpur University

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The Historical Novel

Starting with Walter Scott and the rise of the historical novel at the beginning of the nineteenth

century, this course intends to trace the development of the form looking forward to George

Eliot’s Romola.


Primary Texts:


1)      Walter Scott       Waverley; or ‘Tis Sixty Years Since (1814)

2)      Victor Hugo        The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (1831)

3)      William Makepeace Thackeray   Vanity Fair  (1848)

4)      Nathaniel Hawthorne    The Scarlet Letter (1850)

5)      Charles Dickens                A Tale of Two Cities (1859)

6)      George Eliot       Romola (1862-3)

Reading List:

1)      Georg Lucaks                     The Historical Novel

2)      Nicholas Rance                  The historical novel and popular politics in 19th century England

3)      Avron Fleishman              The English Historical Novel: Walter Scott to Virginia Woolf

4) Diana Wallace  The Woman’s Historical Novel: British Women Writers, 1900-2000


Assessment:  Participants in this course will be evaluated through both class assignments and a project/term paper.

Course coordinator: Sutanuka Ghosh

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