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Course novels in the College Library collection
Caleb Williams by William Godwin; Maurice Hindle (Introduction by)When honest young Caleb Williams comes to work as a secretary for Squire Falkland, he soon begins to suspect that his new master is hiding a terrible secret. But as he digs deeper into Falkland's past and finally unearths the guilty truth, the results of his curiosity prove calamitous when - even though Caleb has loyally sworn never to disclose what he has discovered - the Squire enacts a cruel revenge. A tale of gripping suspense and psychological power, William Godwin's novel creates a searing depiction of the intolerable persecution meted out to a good man in pursuit of justice and equality. Written to expose the political oppression and corrupt hierarchies its author saw in the world around him, Caleb Williams(1794) makes a radical call to end the tyrannical misuses of power.
Female Quixotism by Tabitha Gilman Tenney; Jean Nienkamp (Editor); Andrea Collins (Editor); Cathy N. Davidson (Foreword by)The Early American Women Writers series offers rare works of fiction by eighteenth- and nineteenth-century women, each reprinted in its entirety, each introduced by Cathy N. Davidson, who places the novel in an historical and literary perspective. Ranging from serious cautionary tales aboutmoral corruption to amusing and trenchant social satire, these books provide today's reader with a unique window into the earliest American popular fiction and way of life.First published in 1801, Female Quixotism is a boisterous, rollicking anti-romance and literary satire. It takes place in the fictional village of L---, Pennsylvania, where its central character Dorcas Sheldon--who styles herself the romantic "Dorcasina"--sets out on a quixotic quest for thekind of romantic love portrayed in her favorite English novels. Having rejected the prosaic yet honorable advances of her first suitor, "Lysander," Dorcasina narrowly escapes marriage to a series of unscrupulous rogues interested mostly in her considerable fortune. Moving from one misadventure toanother, the heroine's journey ends in a lonely old age bereft of romantic illusion.Female Quixotism was written during a period of self-definition for the fledgling American republic, and offers a telling glimpse of gender, race, and class issues--as volatile then as they are today. Its woman's-eye view of the life and literature of the age provides a tragicomic parody ofthe limited choices available to women in a society dedicated to the principle that all men are created equal.
Publication Date: 1992-03-05
The Man of Feeling by Henry MacKenzie; Brian Vickers (Editor); Stephen Bending (Introduction by); Stephen Bygrave (Introduction by)Mackenzie's hugely popular novel of 1771 is the foremost work of the sentimental movement, in which sentiment and sensibility were allied with true virtue, and sensitivity is the mark of the man of feeling. The hero, Harley, is followed in a series of episodes demonstrating his benevolence in anuncaring world: he assists the down-trodden, loses his love, and fails to achieve worldly success. The novel asks a series of vital questions: what morality is possible in a complex commercial world? Does trying to maintain it make you a saint or a fool? Is sentiment merely a luxury for theleisured classes? This edition reprints Brian Vickers's authoritative text, with a new introduction that discusses the novel in the context of the Scottish Enlightenment and European sentimentalism.
The Sorrows of Young Werther by Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe; David ConstantineThe Sorrows of Young Werther propelled Goethe to instant fame when it first appeared in 1774. Goethe's story of a sensitive young artist--an alienated youth of searching introspection and passionate intensity--captured the Romantic sensibility of the day and led to a wave of imitations. Translated by the award-winning author David Constantine, this new edition captures the novel's lyric clarity and powerful immediacy. In addition, Constantine's critical introduction sheds light on the autobiographical background, the novel's epistolary form and structure, and Werther's reception and afterlife. The explanatory notes illuminate contemporary allusions, literary references, and the parallels with Goethe's life.