Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Writing and Politics, 1640-1678
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1 x 3000 word essay  50%
Semester Assessment 3 Hours   Pre-released examination  50%
Supplementary Assessment Supplementary 

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:

1. Demonstrate a detailed knowledge of early modern texts;

2. Articulate this knowledge in the form of reasoned critical analysis of particular texts;

3. Locate the texts studied in appropriate literary, historical and cultural contexts;

4. Demonstrate an engagement with relevant aspects of recent scholarly and/or critical debates about the texts studied.

Brief description

The mid-seventeenth century was the most turbulent period in early modern British history which witnessed in close succession civil war, the execution of the monarch, the installation of a republic, dictarorship and restoration of monarchy. The course will explore the twin strands of politics and writing, focusing on the ways in which power and politics were imagined in this period of major political upheaval, through contextualised readings of some of the writing it produced. The focus of the course will be John Milton and Andrew Marvell.


This is a new option developed to extend the rang and variety of modules on early modern writing, and to strengthn the place of Milton on the syllabus.


Seminar 1: 'The poet's time': historical context (Marvell and the Cavalier poets)
Seminar 2: Some political theories (Hobbes, Baxter and others)
Seminar 3: Censorship and the art of writing
Seminar 4: Supporting the cause (Milton, Areopagitica and other writings)
Seminar 5: Supporting the cause (Milton, Political Sonnets)
Seminar 6: Balancing powers: Marvell - a selection of poems including 'An Horation Ode'; 'Upon Appleton House'
Seminar 7: Cavalier Poets: writing retreat, writing back (Vaughan, Denham)
Seminar 8: Milton: rewriting defeat Paradise Lost
Seminar 9: Milton: rewriting defeat Paradise Lost
Seminar 10: Images of authority: Leviathan, Cromwell, Satan (Hobbes, Marvell, Denham, Milton)

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number No
Communication Written communication in the form of essays and examination; Oral communication in seminars;
Improving own Learning and Performance Developing own research skills, management of time;
Information Technology Use of electronic resources, production of written work;
Personal Development and Career planning Critical self-reflection and the develoopment of transferable communication skills;
Problem solving Formulating and developing an extended argument;
Research skills By relating literary texts to hisotrical context and by synthesizing information in an evaluative arguement;
Subject Specific Skills Detailed critical and contextual analysis of literary texts and evaluation of broad theoretical concepts.
Team work Through group work in seminars;


This module is at CQFW Level 6