LITT08011 2017 Literature: The Novel

General Details

Full Title
Literature: The Novel
Transcript Title
The Novel
80 %
Subject Area
LITT - Literature
COMP - Computing & Creative Practices
08 - NFQ Level 8
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2017 - Full Academic Year 2017-18
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Mr. John Kelleher, Tom Weir, Rhona Trench, Una Mannion
Programme Membership
SG_HWRIT_H08 201700 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Writing and Literature SG_HWRIT_H08 201900 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Writing and Literature SG_HWLIT_H08 202000 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Writing and Literature

This module will explore the emergence and reception of the novel in relation to its historical and literary contexts, and to its adoption, and adaptation, of particular voices and forms. The module will examine the development of different traditions of novel writing, explore innovations to the novel as a form made since the seventeenth century, place the English novel in the context of the European novel, and introduce the learners to a range of important discussions about the novel as a genre, its audiences, its cultural function and its relation to the social world.



Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;

  • demonstrate an understanding of how the novel has emerged and developed across a range of different periods and cultural contexts
  • demonstrate an understanding of structural, formal and technical elements of the novel

discuss how literary form both generates meaning and relates to its historical and cultural contexts

  • analyse relevant theoretical ideas and apply these ideas to literary texts

Situate eighteenth-century novels within a number of different contemporary contexts, including attitudes towards gender and the body, emerging literary tastes and publication practices;


Analyse the language, structure and narrative techniques deployed in a range of eighteenth-century novels;

  • Demonstrate the ability to research for seminars, workshops and essays

Teaching and Learning Strategies

lectures, seminars, workshops, discussion and guided independent study

Module Assessment Strategies

written exam, written assignment including essay, course contribution.

Repeat Assessments


Indicative Syllabus

The syllabus will explore the multiplicities of fictions and pleasure readings which flooded the newly open London print market in the 18th century; the burgeoning readership as literacy spread among the poor and women; the legal question of intellectual property raised by blatant piracy of successful works; the construction of gender and sexuality, the question of the class position of the novel, in relation to other genres; the rise of a powerful “public sphere” in which news and opinions were shared, and of the social habit of sharing letters; and the importance of religion to the growing respectability of prose fiction.

Learners will read selections from many different novels, though there will be a handful which will be read in full. Learners will examine theories of gender and sexuality, cultural studies and politics, in their reading of the eighteenth-century novel.

This module addresses these questions through a study of major eighteenth-century novelists including Daniel Defoe, Henry Fielding, Laurence Sterne, Aphra Behn, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, Mary Shelley, George Eliot, Thomas Hardy, Henry James, Joseph Conrad and Oscar Wilde.

In addition, learners will be asked to lead class discussions on the novel.


Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
50 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
50 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 course contribution Continuous Assessment Performance Evaluation 50 % OnGoing 1,2,3,4,5,6,7

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Final Exam Final Exam Practical Evaluation 50 % End of Term 1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Seminar Flat Classroom Discussion and group activities 3 Weekly 3.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 3.00 Hours

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Daniel Defoe, Roxana (1724);

Eliza Haywood, Fantomina (1725);

Samuel Richardson, Pamela (1740);

Henry Fielding, Shamela (1741); Laurence Sterne, A Sentimental Journey (1768)

Henry Mackenzie, The Man of Feeling (1771)

Mary Wollstonecraft, Maria (1798)

Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility (1811)

Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent (1800)

Cavendish, Margaret. A Description of the New World Called the Blazing World (1666), in Paper Bodies: A Margaret Cavendish Reader. Broadview ed.
Defoe, Daniel. Robinson Crusoe (1719), Norton ed.
Haywood, Eliza. Love in Excess (1719), Broadview ed.
Richardson, Samuel. Pamela (1741), Oxford ed.
Fielding, Henry. Joseph Andrews & Shamela (1742), Oxford ed.
Sterne, Laurence. Tristram Shandy (1760-67), Norton ed.
Inchbald, Elizabeth.A Simple Story (1792), Broadview ed.


URL Resources

Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECC0) www.lib.ncsu-->databases---> E Primary Texts for the whole century

Early English Books Online
via Hill Library --> databases --> E Primary texts, alas, only the year 1700.

18th-Century Studies Discussion List, "Selected Readings," bibliography of current studies in the field.

The Voice of the Shuttle chose Literature--English--Restoration and 18th Century--Authors, Works Projects

Other Resources


John Richetti, The Cambridge Companion to the Eighteenth Century Novel Victorian, Cambridge University Press, 2006.  

Michael McKeon ed., Theory of the Novel: A Historical Approach, (Johns Hopkins, 2000) ISBN-10 080186397X, ISBN 13 978-0801863974

Cheryl L. ed., NixonNovel Definitions: An Anthology of Commentary on the Novel, 1688-1815, (Broadview 2009) ISBN 978-1-55111-646-4

John Richetti and Paula Backscheider eds., Popular Fiction by Women 1660-1730,  (Oxford UP, 1997) ISBN-10: 0198711379; ISBN-13: 978-0198711377

Samuel Richardson, Pamela ed. Thomas Keymer, Alice Wakley (Oxford World Classics) 2008; ISBN-10: 019953649X; ISBN-13: 978-0199536498

Judith Hawley, ed.,Henry Fielding, Joseph Andrew and Shamela, (Penguin Classics) 1999, ISBN-10: 0140433864; ISBN-13: 978-0140433869

Frances Burney, Cecilia ed. Peter Sabor and Margaret Anne Doody (Oxford Classics) 2009, 2009 ISBN-10: 019955238X; ISBN-13: 978-0199552382

  • Armstrong, Nancy. How Novels Think: The Limits of Individualism from 1719-1900. New York: Columbia UP, 2005. Print.
  • Hunter, J. Paul. Before Novels : The Cultural Contexts of Eighteenth-Century English Fiction. New York: Norton, 1990. Print.
  • McKeon, Michael. The Origins of the English Novel, 1600-1740. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1987. Print
  • Spacks, Patricia. Imagining a Self : Autobiography and Novel in Eighteenth-Century England. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1976. Print.
  • Spencer, Jane. The Rise of the Woman Novelist: from Aphra Behn to Jane Austen. New York: Blackwell, 1986. Print.
  • Watt, Ian P. The Rise of the Novel : Studies in Defoe, Richardson and Fielding. 1957. 2nd. ed. Berkeley: U California P, 2001.