1066 - 1485
Content; Religious devotion. Pays that instruct the illiterate masses in morals and religion. Chivalric code of honour/ romances. Church instructs it's people through the morality and miracle plays. An illiterate population is able to see and hear the literature
Genres; Stock Epithetes. Mystery and Miracle plays. Oral tradition continues. Folk Ballads. Frame Stories, Moral tales. Morality Plays
Historical Context; Henry 111 crowned king in 115 brings a judical system, royal courts, juries and chivarly to Britain. Willia the conqueror crowned king in 1066.
Key Authors; Domesday Book. Chaucer. L'Morte de Arthur
The Neo Classical Period
Context; Coffee houses - where educated men spent evening with literary and political associates. 50% males are functionally literate - dramatic rise. Factories begin to spring up as industrial revolution begins.
Genres; Satire. Poetry. Novels. Essays. Letters, diaries and biographies.
Content; Emphasis on reason and logic. Stresses harmony, stability and wisdom. Emphasis on the individal. Belief that humainty is basically evil. Approach to life ' the world as it should be'
Key Authors; Alexander Pope. Johnathan Swift. John Bunyan. John Milton. Samuel Johnson.
- The Restoriation; the reign of charles 2nd 1630- 1660 - after his restoration to the thrown in 1630 following the english civil war and Cromwell.
- The Age of Enlightment - 18th Century
The Modern Period
Content; Frustration when reading text, Alienation, The world wars effects on humanity, Disillusionment, Spiritual loneliness, Breakdown of social norms, Rejection of outdated society system, substition of a mythical past, literature attempt to search for 'truthers' and discover the deep ideas and meanings behind, Objection to religious thoughts
Genres; Speeches, Poetry - free verse, memoirs, novels, stream of conciousness
Context; British empire loses 1 million soliders to ww1, British colonies demand independence, Winston Churchill leas Britain through ww2 and the Germans bomb England directly.
Key Authors; Virignina Woolf, James Joyce, George Orwell, Dylan Thomas, Jospeh Conrad
1485 - 1660
Content; World view shifts from religion and after life to one stressing the human life on earth, unrequited love, constant love, timeless love, love subject to change, courtly love, popular theme - development of human potential, popular theme- many aspects of love exploited, courtly love, commoners welcomed at some play productions while conservatives try to close the theatres in the grounds that they promote brazen behaviour, not all middle class embrace metaphysical poets and their abstract ideas
Genres; Poetry, Written in verse, the sonnet, metaphysical poetry, supported by loyalty, tragedies, comedies, histories, elaborate and unexpected metaphors called conceit, drama.
Context; War of roses ends in 1485 and political stability arrives, Ecomony changes from farm based to one of international trade, printing press helps stabilise english as a language and allows more people to read a variety of literature.
Key Author; Shakespeare, John Donne, Metaphysical Poets, Cavalier Poets, Katherine Phillips, Andrew Marvell, Ben Johnson
Content; romantic triangles, conflict between those in power and the common masses, aristocratic villians, country vs city, sexual discretion - or lack of it, strained coincidences, misdirected letters, bigamous marriages, heroines in physical danger.
Genres; elegies, political novels, novels become popular for the 1st time, poetry easier to understand,dramatic monologues, drama- comedies of manner, magazines, serialised novels - Dickens.
Historical; Paper is cheap, growth of industry and business in Britain, unparalleled dominance of nations, economies and trade abroad.
Key Authors; Charlotte Bronte, Charles Dickens, Charles Darwin, Thomas Hardy, Robert Browning, Oscar Wilde
1798 - 1832
Content; human knowledge consists of impressions and ideals formed in the individals mind, introduction of gothic elements and terror/horror stories and novels, in nature one can find peace and comfort, children seem hapless victims of poverty and exploitation, evil attributed to society not to nature, human beings are good, moment of protest- a desire for personal freedom.
Genres; Poetry, lyrical, ballads
Context; Middle class gains representation in the British parliment, Napolen rises to power in france and opposes England militarily and economically, Tory philosophy should not interfer with private enterprise, railroads begin to run.
Key Authors; Jane Austen, Marry Shelly, William Wordsworth, Percy Shelly, William Blake, John Keats, Lord Byron, Robert Burns