The Art of Satire

English 313, Spring 2003

Jack Lynch

Course Description

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Office: (973) 353-5279 x 516; 516 Hill Hall.

Hours: Monday, 1:30-2:30 and 4:00-5:00, and by appointment (appointments are best).

Home: (609) 882-4642 (before 10:00 p.m.!).

E-mail: (the best way to reach me).

Listserv: satire @ (for the whole class).

Course Requirements

Schedule of Class Meetings

Wednesday, 22 January
Introduction: Satire, irony, comedy, parody, lampoon, invective, burlesque, travesty, jeremiad.

Ridentem Dicere Verum

Monday, 27 January
Horace, Satires 2.1 and 2.2.
Wednesday, 29 January
Juvenal, Satires 3 and 10.
Monday, 3 February
Alexander Pope, "The First Satire of the Second Book of Horace, Imitated," and "The Second Satire of the Second Book of Horace, Paraphrased."
Wednesday, 5 February
John Dryden, selections from Discourse concerning the Original and Progress of Satire.
Monday, 10 February
Dryden, Juvenal's "Third Satyr."
Wednesday, 12 February
Samuel Johnson, London. EXERCISE: Produce your own imitation of part of a satire by Horace or Juvenal in about 500 words. Rhyme and meter are optional.

Lampoon and Invective

Monday, 17 February
John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, "A Satyr on Charles II."
Wednesday, 19 February
Dryden, Mac Flecknoe.
Monday, 24 February
Pope, Epistle to Arbuthnot; Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, "Verses Addressed to the Imitator of Horace." EXERCISE: Break a butterfly on a wheel with a personal lampoon directed at a public figure in about 500 words. Examples: "A Satyr on George II," "Mac Clinton."

Social and Political Satire

Wednesday, 26 February
Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels, part 1.
Monday, 3 March
Gulliver's Travels, part 3.
Wednesday, 5 March
Swift, A Modest Proposal.
Monday, 10 March
Voltaire, Candide, chapters 1-16. EXERCISE: Produce your own "modest proposal" on the topic of your choice in about 500 words.
Wednesday, 12 March
Candide, chapters 17-30.
Monday, 17 March
NO CLASS — Spring Break.
Wednesday, 19 March
NO CLASS — Spring Break.
Monday, 24 March
The Simpsons, "Homerphobia."
Wednesday, 26 March
Garry Trudeau, Peace Out, Dawg! Tales from Ground Zero.

Utopias and Dystopias

Monday, 31 March
Thomas More, Utopia, pp. 1-41.
Wednesday, 2 April
Utopia, pp. 41-85.
Monday, 7 April
Gulliver's Travels, part 4. DEBATE: "Resolved, Swift's Houyhnhnmland is a utopia."

Satire as Apocalypse

Wednesday, 9 April
Rochester, A Satyr against Mankind; Pope, The Dunciad, book 4.
Monday, 14 April
The Dunciad, book 4 (continued). E-MAIL ASSIGNMENT: Send at least two possible theses for your final paper to the class listserv by midnight on Monday.
Wednesday, 16 April
George Gordon, Lord Byron, A Vision of Judgment. E-MAIL ASSIGNMENT: Comment on at least two possible theses by other members of the class on the listserv by midnight on Wednesday.
Monday, 21 April
A Vision of Judgment (continued).
Wednesday, 23 April
Thomas Pynchon, The Crying of Lot 49, chapters 1-2.
Monday, 28 April
The Crying of Lot 49, chapters 3-4.
Wednesday, 30 April
The Crying of Lot 49, chapters 5-6. FINAL PAPER DUE.
Monday, 5 May