English Renaissance Humanism

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  • WS 17/18

Course Information

Nr. Kursbezeichnung Typ Zeit Raum DozentIn
154221 English Renaissance Humanism – Group A 2 HS Di 12:15 – 13:45 R. 3.206 Binder
154222 English Renaissance Humanism – Group B 2 HS Di 14:15 – 15:45 R. 3.206 Binder

Course Description

The Renaissance in England was deeply influenced and shaped through such major impulses and heterogeneous forces as Christian humanism, the Reformation and the exploration of geographically newly discovered regions of the world. Apart from sharing certain features with the Italian Renaissance, the English Renaissance expressed itself individually in political, religious, philosophical, social and artistic terms.

The seminar focuses on one of its important integral elements: Christian humanism. It explores the fundamental ideas of this intellectual movement such as the Renaissance ideal of man and society, education and identity formation (masculinity and femininity in early modernity), the role and the functions of a monarch/ruler, the ethic, moral and didactic potential of literature.

These ideas are studied and discussed on the basis of five exemplary and highly influential works that started a whole paradigm of treatises on education and of Utopian and Dystopian writing in England as well as world-wide. Among them are two works of Italian origin, in fact masterpieces of world literature, which are included in the discussion in order to understand the intercultural interface of European literature of the time.

Reading List

The main works discussed in the seminar are (recommended for purchase):

  • Machiavelli, Niccolò. Il Principe (1513)/The Prince (1640) [Ba 8473/Nachdr. 21]*
  • Baldassare Castiglione. Il libro del cortegiano (1528)/The Courtyer (1561) [Ba 8479]*
  • More, Sir Thomas. Utopia (1516) [C 24936; SEL M 36/80; Ja G 147; C 15208-4]*
  • Elyot, Sir Thomas. The Boke named the Gouvernour (1531) Renascence Editions: http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/crbear/gov/gov1.htm*
  • Roger Ascham. The Scholemaster (published posthumously in 1570) [SEL A 1680]*
  • * = Handapparat

Additionally, the seminar will include some films about the English Renaissance.

A ‘Reader’ will be available a week prior to the beginning of the course (“Copyshop”). It will be needed from the first session on and will be used in all the sessions.

Course Requirements

Credits will be awarded on the basis of either:

  • ‘aktive Teilnahme’ (oral presentation and shorter paper or ’project as AT’)
  • term paper (including participation in class discussion)
  • Literature/Culture Projects (presentation in class)
  • ‘Klausur’/written test

So, please, check what you need before you do the Electronic Course Registration.

Personal attendance during the first session is required to maintain the enrolment status.

The tasks will be assigned during the very first session already, so be here on time!


Lehramtsstudiengänge: MA BML 2005:
  • 1301, 1302, 1303
LPO 2003:
  • GHR: 5c
  • GyGe: 6a, b
  • SP1. Fach: 5c
  • SP2. Fach: 4b
  • BK: 6a, b
LABG 2009:
  • G: 703, 704
  • HRG: 601, 1001
  • GyGe/BK: 601, 701, 702, 1001
  • SP: 703
LABG 2016:
  • G: 601, 703, 704
  • HRSGe: 601, 1001
  • GyGe/BK: 601, 701, 702, 1001
  • SP: 703
Angewandte Sprachwissenschaften/

Angewandte Literatur-/Kulturwissenschaften:

  • B.A.ALK: Kern: 6abc, 7a Komp: 3abc
  • B.A.AS: Kern: 6bc Komp: 4a
  • M.A.ALK: 1ab
  • M.A.AS: 2ab
Angewandte Sprachwissenschaften/

Angewandte Literatur-/Kulturwissenschaften PO ab WS 16/17:

  • B.A.ALK: Kern: 6abc, 7a Komp: 3abc
  • B.A.AS: Kern: 6bc Komp: 4a
  • M.A.ALK: 1ab
  • M.A.AS: 2ab