Humanities 4: Enlightenment, Romanticism, Revolution

Summer Session II, 2018

Course Requirements

Antony Lyon


Office Hours: Tu, 12-2 or by appt @ Art of Espresso (Mandeville Coffeecart)

Lecture: M-Tu-W-Th, 9:30-10:50 @ WLH 2113

Section: M & W, 11-11:50 @ WLH 2113

Course Syllabus

All information, including lecture slides, course reader, handouts, and essay prompts will be posted on TritonEd.

Required Texts

You are required to use the selected translations & editions of the texts. Books can be purchased at the PC Bookstore:

  • John Locke, Second Treatise on Government (Broadview)

  • Voltaire, Candide, or Optimism, trans Cuffe (Penguin)

  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discourse on Inequality, trans Philip (Oxford)

  • Mary Shelley, Frankenstein (1831 Edition) (Penguin)

  • Humanities Program Writing Handbook

(*) All other assigned reading is available here or on TritonEd.

Course Requirements

  • Section/Participation—10%

  • Section Assignments—5%

  • Journals—10% (Posted 8/6)

  • Essay 1—25% (Posted 8/6, Due 8/16)

  • Essay 2—25% (Posted 8/6, Due 8/28)

  • Exam Essay—10% (Posted 8/6, Due 9/7)

  • Exam Short Answers—15% (In-Class 9/7)

Class Policies

  • Technology Policy. The use of laptops, tablets, & smartphones is not permitted in lecture and discussion section. Accommodations can be made on case-by-case basis, please discuss with the professor.

  • Grade Policy. Students must fulfill all course requirements in order to pass the course.

Class Schedule

8/6 — Introduction: Revolutions

8/7-8 — Political Community & the Right to Resist

  • John Locke, The Second Treatise of Government, Ch 1-5, 7-9, 11, 14, 18-19

8/9 — Dissolving the Political Bands

8/13-14 — The Best of All Possible Worlds

8/15-16 — Being Human

  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discourse on Inequality, p14-85, look over the end notes (p86-120)

8/20-21 — The Morality of Reason

  • (*) Immanuel Kant, Selections from The Grounding for the Metaphysics of Morals

8/22-23 — Humanity, the Creator

  • Mary Shelley, Frankenstein, p15-225

8/27 — An American

8/28 — American Romanticism

8/29-30 — The Naturalist's America

9/3 — No class, Labor Day

9/4-5 — Democratic Vistas

9/6 — Course Review

9/7 — Final Exam: Friday, 8-11

Complementary Course Materials

Voltaire's Candide

Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Enlightenment & Progress

  • Practical social progress: Hans Rosling's "200 Countries, 200 Years, 4 Minutes" from The Joy of Stats on BBC4

  • Recent arguments for moral progress, see Steven Pinker's The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined (Amazon) and Sam Harris's The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values (Amazon)

Immanuel Kant

  • Kenneth Rexroth, August 23, 1964

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

American Slavery Through Music

  • (*) Selected Songs, Lyrics and Spotify Playlist

  • Follow an internet rabbit trail! Lecture opened with Louis Armstrong's "Black and Blue" which features in Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man (Amazon) which is a pillar of African-American literature along with The Autobiography of Malcolm X (Amazon). On the politics leading up to the Civil War, see Fugitive Slave Laws and the Dred Scott decision. This should be read in contrast to Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation. The Underground Railroad evolved to get slaves from the South to Canada, where they would be free and beyond the reach of American law. Check out Eric Foner's Gateway to Freedom: The Hidden History of the Underground Railroad (Amazon) and the excellent photography essay, Through Darkness to Light, by Jeanine Michna-Bales and a review of the show from Feature Shoot. The spiritual plays a central role in the slave's religious life. The lecture included a selection from LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka)'s Blues People: Negro Music in White America (Amazon) on the church services. The whole book gives a fascinating history of the evolution of the spirituals and the evolution of African-American music in the century after slavery. On the "sacred violence" that often attended attempts to end slavery, read about Nat Turner's Rebellion and the abolitionist, John Brown. On the music, check out origins of this in the field recordings of Alan Lomax. Then move on to Goodbye, Babylon, a collection of early 20th century American religious music. It's stunning, as is everything Dust to Digital puts together.

Henry David Thoreau

Emily Dickinson

Additional Information

Academic Integrity Policy
TheUCSD Policy on Integrity of Scholarship must be observed for this course. Examples of plagiarism include but are not limited to the following: turning in another student’s paper as if it was your own; collaboration with another student in writing the paper; quoting, paraphrasing, or borrowing ideas from published or unpublished material written by someone other than yourself, without explicit acknowledgment of the source. In the Humanities Program, you are to write papers based on your own study of the assigned materials, not on secondary sources.

Students agree that by taking this course all required essays will be subject to text-similarity review on for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted essays will be included as source documents in the reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of essays. Use of the service is subject to the terms of use agreement posted on its website. 

Inclusion & Accommodation
I value an inclusive classroom environment in which everyone shows respect to each other as persons and scholars. If you need accommodation for disability or religious reasons, please see me as soon as possible so that the appropriate arrangements can be made.

Humanities Program

For information about the Humanities Program at Revelle College, visit the program’s website.