ENGL 495 Arthurian Literature, Shakespeare, and the Elizabethan Theatre: From Allegory to Inwardness (4)
This course begins with the exploration of the history and literary development of the medieval hero, Arthur, king of the Britons, with special concentration on the trials of heroic identity in medieval literature. Students read the first story of Arthur in Geoffrey of Monmouth's History of the Kings of Britain and explore the development of the legend in French courtly and spiritual literature before studying Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur. The second part of the course addresses the representation of heroic character in English Renaissance literature, focusing on issues of ambition, temptation and honor. Plays read include Christopher Marlowe's Dr. Faustus and Jew of Malta, as well as William Shakespeare's Hamlet and Merchant of Venice. This course is only available through the European Studies Program.