Friday, July 31, 2009

1835 - 1836: Danton's Death to Pickwick Papers

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Georg Buchner. German. 1835. Play. Danton’s Death. Starkly realistic. Tired, apathetic in beginning; idealistic commitment when he defies Robespierre.

Nathaniel Hawthorne. American. 1835. Story. “Young Goodman Brown.” Young Puritan discovers that all his respected townsmen, even his wife, are in league with Satan.

Elias Lonnrott (Compiler). Finnish. 1835/49. Epic Tradition. Kalevala. Finnish national epic. Origin of the world. Adventures of three sons of Kaleva.

Ralph Waldo Emerson. American. 1836. Poetry. “Concord Hymn.” “Shot heard ‘round the world.”

Dickens. British. 1836. Novel. Pickwick Papers. Contains well known characters and caricatures. Letters and manuscripts about club’s activities. If you have not read it, it's hilarious.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

1833 - 1835: "In Memoriam" to "Berenice"

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Tennyson. British. 1833/50. Poetry. “In Memoriam.” In addition to an elegy for Hallam, Themes include the decline of faith, rise of skepticism and scientific materialism.

Wm. Gilmore Simms. American. 1835. Novel. The Yemassee. Conflict between South Carolina Yemassee Indians and British in 1715. Son betrays tribe and is killed by his mother. Helplessness of Indians as they lose their lands to advancing white civilization.

Nikolay Golgol. Russian. 1835. Novel. Taras Bulba. Seventeenth-century wars between Poles and Cossacks in the Ukraine. Russian son falls I love with a Pole and deserts; killed by father. Other son and the father are killed by the Poles.

Angel Saavedra Rivas. Spanish. 1835. Play. Don Alvaro o la fuerta del sino. Alvaro accidentally kills father of girl he loves and her two brothers. Before he dies, one brother kills the girl. Alvaro commits suicide.

Edgar Allan Poe. American. 1835. Story. “Berenice.” Love for epileptic cousin. Has her teeth drawn when she is presumed dead. She comes to life.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

1833: Eugenie Grandet to Tracts for the Times

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Balzac. French. 1833. Novel. Eugenie Grandet. Father, embodiment of greed and domestic tyranny, condemns his daughter to futile, joyless existence.

Thomas Carlyle. British. 1833. Satire. Sartor Resartus. Idealist finally realizes that the here and actual are the true ideal. Title: “Tailor Retailored.”

Balzac. French. 1833. Novel. The Country Doctor. Kindly spirit and indefatigable efforts on behalf of people of his village. Universally beloved.

Aleksandr Pushkin. Russian. 1833. Poetry. The Bronze Horseman. Ordinary individual vs. the power of the state. Curses statue of Peter the Great. Blames him for his fiancĂ©e’s death.

JH Newman. British. 1833/41. Nonfiction. Tracts for the Times. Designed to arrest the advance of liberalism in religious thought.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

1831 - 1833: Hunchback of Notre Dame to "The Queen of Spades"

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Victor Hugo. French. 1831. Romance. The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Romance of medieval times. Esmeralda; Capt. Phoebus; Frollo; Quasimodo, the deformed bell ringer.

Thomas Love Peacock. British. 1831. Novel. Crotchet Castle. Satire on romantic themes. Humorously erudite discussions. Debate on the best period in history.

George Sand. British. 1832. Novel. Indiana. Heroine, a Creole named Indiana, abandons old husband for fascinating young lover.

Washington Irving. American. 1832. Stories. The Legends of the Alhambra. Tales and sketches on Spanish subjects. Admirer of Moorish civilization. Clash between the Spaniard and the Moors.

Aleksandr Pushkin. Russian. 1833. Story. “The Queen of Spades.” Calm, matter-of-fact telling of the mental breakdown of a gambler.

Monday, July 27, 2009

1830 - 1831: The Red and the Black to "The City in the Sea"

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Stendahl. French. 1830. Novel. The Red and the Black. Plot is romantic. Portrait of hero’s inner state is realistic.

Aleksandr Pushkin. Russian. 1830. Stories. Tales of Belkin. Stationmaster is one of the first characeters in Russian literature who is not a member of the nobility.

Oliver Wendell Holmes. American. 1830. Poetry. “Old Ironsides.” Written when Holmes read of the Navy’s plans to scrap the old frigate.

Aleksandr Pushkin. Russian. 1831. Verse Drama. Eugene Onegin. Byronic hero. Bored. In duel kills friend. Hollow, artificial. Ironic narrator. Not interested in woman when she is interested in him. When he is interested in her, she will have none of him.

Edgar Allan Poe. American. 1831. Poetry. “The City in the Sea.” Grim landscape. Description of shrine. Melodic.

Friday, July 24, 2009

1828 - 1830: Elsie Dinsmore to Wild Ass's Skin

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Martha Farquharson Finley. American. 1828/1909. Novels. Elsie Dinsmore (formula series). Pious little prig who remains a paragon of virtue although persecuted by everyone.

Goethe. German. 1829. Novel. Wilhelm Meister’s Travels or the Renunciants. Finally discovers true calling as a surgeon. Goethe develops ideas on a variety of subjects.

Balzac. French. 1829. Historical Novel. Les Chouans. French peasant insurgents, supporters of royalist cause in the Revolution.

Aleksandr Pushkin. Russian. 1830. Poetic Drama. Little Tragedies. Four plays, “essays of dramatic investigation”; characters in four varied situations. Covetous knight: effects of avarice. Feast during the plague: evil effects on human behavior of imminent death. Mozart, Salieri: depicts Salieri’s jealousy of Mozart’s artistic genius, legendary poisoning. Stone guest: retelling of the Don Juan legend.

Balzac. French. 1830. Novel. Wild Ass’s Skin. Magic skin grants wishes but it and the owner’s life grow smaller with each wish.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

1826 - 1828: Last of the Mohicans to Fanshawe.

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

James F. Cooper. American. 1826. Novel. The Last of the Mohicans. Magua, evil Indian vs. Uncas, last of the Mohicans. Cora killed by Magua. Uncas dies trying to save her.

Alessandro Manzoni. Italian. 1827. Novel. The Betrothed. Greatest Italian novel of modern times? Remarkable scene: plague in Milan. Peasant lovers try to marry in spite of obstacles posed by evil doers. Shows working of God in our daily lives. Characters are personifications.

James F. Cooper. American. 1827. Novel. The Prairie. Death of aged Natty Bumppo. Notable prairie descriptions—from Lewis and Clark. Squatters protend ill for future of democracy. Natty: selfless, noble, disinterested.

Ricardo Palma. Peru. 1827/1906. Traditions. Traditiones Perunas. Covers virtually every aspect of the Peruvian past; history, anecdote, satire.

Nathaniel Hawthorne. American. 1828. Novel. Fanshawe. Pale, serious student gives Ellen up to a man he knows she loves and then he dies. Influenced by Scott and the Gothic novel.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

1823 - 1825: Leatherstocking Tales to Boris Godunov

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

James F. Cooper. American. 1823/41. Novels. The Leatherstocking Tales. Follows the career of Natty Bumppo from youth to death.

James Morier. British. 1824. Romance. The Adventures of Hajii Baba of Ispahan. Picaresque romance. Life in Persia. Roguery takes hero into all spheres of Persian society.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1825. Novel. The Talisman. Knight in disguise in the Holy Land under Richard I. Richard and Saladin are leading figures. Talisman is a healing amulet used by Saladin to cure Richard’s illness.

Jose Joaquin Olmeda. Ecuador. 1825. Poetry. Canto A Bolivar: La Victoria de Junin. Dedicated to Simon Bolivar; forerunner of the romantic movement in South America.

Aleksandr Pushkin. Russian. 1825. Play. Boris Godunov. Former Czar of Russia. Tortured by guilt for his murder of a prince.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

1822 - 1823: "Dream Children...." to "Dissertation on Roast Pig"

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Charles Lamb. British. 1822. Essay. “Dream Children: a Reverie.” Imaginary conversations with children he has never had.

James F. Cooper. American. 1823. Novel. The Pioneers, or The Source of the Susquehanna. Natty Bumppo: the laws of nature vs. the laws of civilization.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1823. Novel. Quentin Durward. Set in 15th-century France. Saved king’s life and wins countess’s hand in marriage.

Clement Clarke Moore. American. 1823. Poetry. “A Visit from St. Nicholas.” Written by a scholar who taught Oriental and Greek literature.

Charles Lamb. British. 1822/33. Essay. “A Dissertation on Roast Pig.” Humorous account of the “accidental discovery” of the process of cooking pork.

Monday, July 20, 2009

1821 - 1822: Kenilworth to Confessions...Opium Eater

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1821. Novel. Kenilworth. Portrayal of Queen Elizabeth and her court. Kenilworth is a castle.

Aleksandr Gribotedov. Russian. 1822. Poetic Drama. Woe from Wit. Russian nobleman returns from trip to Europe and complains about the pettiness of Russian society. He is ostracized. Many lines have become popular proverbial phrases.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1822. Novel. Peveril of the Peak. Cavalier in love with roundhead’s daughter. Popish plot of 1678. 128 characters.

Washington Irving. American. 1822. Stories. Bracebridge Hall, or The Humorists. Collection of tales and sketches. Sequel to Sketch Book of Geoffrey, Crayon, Gent.

Thomas DeQuincey. British. 1822. Autobiography. Confessions of an English Opium Eater. Growth and effects of his habit of taking opium.

Friday, July 17, 2009

1820 - 1821: "The Sensitive Plant" to "Adonais."

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1820. Poetry. “The Sensitive Plant.” A plant’s love for its lady gardener and its demise with the death of the lady.

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1820. Poetry. “Ode to the West Wind.” Wild, strong wind of autumn—as he once was: “timeless, swift and proud.”

Heinrich von Kleist. German. 1821. Play. Prinz Friedrich von Homburg. Hero acts on a dream. In his eagerness, he is insubordinate and is condemned to death. He accepts the sentence. Pardoned, his dream comes true. He marries the ruler’s niece.

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1821. Poetry. “Epipsychidion.” Addressed to Emilia Viviani, the embodiment of the ideal love and beauty that Shelley constantly sought.

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1821. Poetry. “Adonais.” Allusion to mourning for Adonis. One of the greatest elegies in the English language.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

1819 - 1820: Don Juan to Melmoth the Wanderer

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Lord Byron. British. 1819/24. Satiric Poetry. Don Juan. World-wide adventures. Digressions on wealth, power, society, chastity, poets, diplomats, England. Incomplete. Pronounced "Don Jew-un."

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1820. Poetic Drama. Prometheus Unbound. Prometheus is the symbol of humanity, chained, tormented. Jupiter represents tyranny of kings and civil institutions. Jupiter overthrown by Demigorgon. Golden age begins, in which love and beauty reign.

John Keats. British. 1820. Poetry. “Isabella, or the Pot of Basil.” Based on a tale of Boccaccio. Florence. Brothers kill sister’s lover. She plants his head in a pot of Basil. The pot is stolen, and she dies of grief.

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1820. Poetry. “The Cloud.” Lyric description of a cloud on its cyclical journey from sky to earth and back. Symbolizes rebirth.

Charles Maturin. Irish. 1820. Gothic Novel. Melmoth the Wanderer. Sells his soul to the Devil for prolonged life. To cancel the pact, he must find someone willing to do the same. No one, regardless of circumstances, is willing to make the same deal.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

1819: Bride of Lammemoor to "La Belle Dame sans Merci"

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1819. Novel. Bride of Lammermoor. Lucy Ashton. Her father ruins Ravenswood whose son Edgar falls in love with Lucy. Forced to marry someone else, she murders her husband and dies of convulsions. Distraught, Edgar dies in quicksand on his way to a duel. Historic incident.

John Keats. British. 1819. Poetry. “The Eve of St. Agnes.” Legend that on the Eve of St. Agnes, maidens are allowed a glimpse of heir future husbands. Sensuous imagery.

John Keats. British. 1819. Poetry. “Ode on a Grecian Urn.” Perfection and timelessness of art contrasted to living world of change.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1819. Novel. Ivanhoe. Post-Norman conquest. Saxons vs. Normans. Real heroine is a Jewess, Rebecca. Richard I. Robin Hood. Chivalry Tournament.

John Keats. British. 1819. Poetry. “La Belle Dame sans Merci.” Taken from an early French poem by Alain Chartier. Medieval imagery.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

1818 - 1819: Nightmare Abbey to "Ode to a Nightingale."

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Thomas Love Peacock. British. 1818. Novel. Nightmare Abbey. Satirizes leading figures and concepts of romanticism in England.

Washington Irving. American. 1819. Sketches. The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. Beginning of short story in America. Sketches of American landscape and culture. Contains "Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "Rip Van Winkle."

Washington Irving. American. 1819. Story. "Rip Van Winkle." Falls asleep before the Revolution and 20 years later wakes up. Contrast between the new and old societies.

Washington Irving. American. 1819. Story. "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow." Brom Bones masquerades as the headless horseman and scares the schoolmaster out of town.

John Keats. British. 1819. Poetry. "Ode to a Nightingale." Feeling of melancholy because of mortality, but bird's song is immortal.

Monday, July 13, 2009

1818: Persuasion to The Heart of Midlothian

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Jane Austen. British. 1818. Novel. Persuasion. After 8 years, engagement broken; however, lovers are reunited.

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. British. 1818. Romance. Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus. Animates soulless monster; he longs for sympathy; shunned, turns to evil.

Lord Byron. British. 1818. Poetry. Beppo. Husband of Laura. a Venetian lady. Captive at Troy. Adventures. Returns to native land. Reunited.

Percy Bysshe Shelley. British. 1818. Poetry. “Ozymandias.” Ironic comment on the vanity and futility of a tyrant’s power.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1818. Novel. The Heart of Midlothian. Old jail, center of Edinburgh. Porteous Riots, 1736. Effie Deans seduced. Kills child. Sentenced to die.

Friday, July 10, 2009

1817 - 1818: Lalla Rookh to Northanger Abbey

1817 to 1818: Lalla Rookh to Northanger Abbey.

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Thomas Moore. Irish. 1817. Tales. Lalla Rookh. Four oriental tales. Daughter of emperor of Delhi on way to meet her betrothed. Meets poet who relates tales. She falls in love with him. He turns out to be her betrothed.

William Cullen Bryant. American. 1817. Poetry. “Inscription for the Entrance to a Wood.” Finds solace in the woods for the guilt and misery of the world.

Lord Byron. British. 1817. Poetic drama. Manfred. Hero sells himself to the Devil and lives without human sympathies in solitude in the Alps.

William Cullen Bryant. American. 1817. Poetry. Thanatopsis. Seeks comfort in Nature for death. Time comes to join the “innumerable caravan.”

Jane Austen. British. 1818. Novel. Northanger Abbey. Girl imagines Abbey is Gothic nightmare. Learns she is wrong.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

1816: Headlong Hall to The Antiquary

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Thomas Love Peacock. British. 1816. Novel. Headlong Hall. Brilliantly witty. Satire on the idealistic aspirations of romanticism.

Lord Byron. British. 1816. Poetry. “The Prisoner of Chillon.” Effects of long imprisonment—he has become used to it.

Jane Austen. British. 1816. Novel. Emma. Emma plays matchmaker and causes trouble. Themes of self-delusion, class and decorum. Includes the garrulous Miss Bates.

Jose Fernandez de Lizardi. Mexican. 1816. Novel. The Itching Parrot. Engaging rogue. Realistic picture of Mexican society on the eve of independence.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1816. Novel. The Antiquary. Scott’s favorite. Love of William Lovel for daughter of Sir Arthur Wardour in the time of George III.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

1814 - 1815: Mansfield Park to "The Destruction of Sennacherib"

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Jane Austen. British. 1814. Novel. Mansfield Park. Girl adopted by rich uncle’s family emerges triumphant after a soap opera plot.

Wm. Cullen Bryant. American. 1815. Poetry. “To a Waterfowl.” Describes flight of bird, which renews belief in divine guidance.

Benjamin Constant de Rebecque. French. 1815. Novel. Adolphe. Precursor of modern psychological novel. Protagonist deeply influenced by a woman of strong intellectual convictions.

Sir Water Scott. British. 1815. Novel. Guy Mannering. Soap opera plot. Noted for characters Meg Merrilies and Dandie Dinmont.

Lord Byron. British. 1815. Poetry. “The Destruction of Sennacherib.” Vividly portrays the plague that struck down the invading army of the Assyria king in Palestine, 7th century, BC.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

1814: "Star Spanled Banner" to The Excursion

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Francis Scott Key. American. 1814. Song. “Star Spangled Banner.” Written during the War of 1812. Sept 13 and 14. Part scribbled on back of envelope. Sung to the tune of “To Anacreon in Heaven” by English composer John Stafford Smith. Became National Anthem in 1931 by act of Congress.

Adelbert von Chamisso. German. 1814. Story. “Peter Schlemihl’s Wundersame Geschichte.” Gives up shadow to gray stranger for purse. Balance between fantastic subject and matter-of-fact style in which it is treated.

Lord Byron. British. 1814. Poetry. “The Corsair.” Adventures of Conrad the Pirate and Queen Gulnare. Prototype of the Byronic hero.

Sir Walter Scott. British. 1814. Novel. Waverly. Background is the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745.

Wordsworth. British. 1814. Poetry. The Excursion. Discusses virtue, religious faith, the industrial revolution and its social effects, and the education of children.

Monday, July 6, 2009

1811 - 1813: "Undine" to Pride and Prejudice

Chronology of World, British and American Literature

Friedrich von Fouque. German. 1811. Tale. “Undine.” Tragic love between water spirit Undine, and a knight.

Goethe. German. 1811/33. Autobiography. Poetry and Truth. Attempt to explain the major strains of his inner development; the essential principles of his poetry.

Lord Byron. British. 1812. Narrative Poetry. Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage. Spenserian stanzas. Solitary pilgrimage. Evokes events, people associated with each place.

JR Wyss. Swiss. 1813. Novel. The Swiss Family Robinson. Adventures of a Swiss clergyman, his wife and four sons, shipwrecked on a desert island.

Jane Austen. British. 1813. Novel. Pride and Prejudice
. Darcy (pride) vs. Elizabeth (prejudice).