The Old English Period (C. 500-1066)
Textbook p. 10-11
Workbook p. 6 and 9
1. (page 6)
a. The first inhabitants of England were the Celts. They are no longer living there now, because the invaders (Angles, Saxons and Jutes) arrived in ever growing numbers and in the course of the following centuries they gradually drove the Celts westwards until they had occupied the larger part of what is now England.
b. The reason that the Celts were unable to resist the waves of invaders in the fifth century is that when the Roman armies were withdrawn in 410, they soon found they were unable to prevent newcomers from settling in Britain permanently.
d. The basic linguistic difference between the language spoken by the Celts and that of the invaders is that the language spoken by the Celts had Roman influences and the language spoken by the invaders had Germanic influences.
The language of the Germanic invaders is more important in the development of present-day English, because it forms the basis of English as it is spoken today.
e. An explanation that Frisian is much closer to Old English than it is to Dutch is that Frisian have more Germanic influences than Dutch and so it is much closer to Old English.
2. (page 9)
a. Beowulf werd door iemand vertelt die zich helemaal inleefde in het verhaal. Het werd als tijdverdrijf gedaan, vooral ‘s avonds waar dan het hele dorp of de hele groep (jong en oud) aandachtig naar luisterde. Ook was er muziek bij.
b. De functies van het heldendicht zijn:
- amusement (het was hun tijdverdrijf, omdat de avonden nog heel lang duurden)
- rapportage (de gebeurtenissen die hebben plaatsgevonden worden in de vorm van een heldendicht meegedeelt/verteld.)
- opvoedende en onderwijzende rol (zo leerden de ouderen vooral aan de jongere generatie dingen over het leven, door de overdracht kwamen zij veel te weten)
Textbook p. 20-21
Workbook p. 11
1.a. Duke William of Normandy (William the Conqueror) and Harold Godwinson contended for the English crown in the Battle of Hastings. The outcome changed the course of English history, because William the Conqueror (the winner) set out to organize society along the lines of the feudal system of his own country.
b. The importance of the Battle of Hastings for the English language was that when English became the one national language in the fourteenth century, it had changed much by taking over many thousands of words of French origin. It seems as if a new language had been born.
The social changes that are involved here are that the Norman French dialect became the language used in the higher circles of society and in all matters of law and government, while English continued to be spoken by the common people.
c. The most important changes under the influence of French culture in literature are that the alliterative line was replaced by the French type with end-rhyme and fixed syllable patterns by poetry. The Germanic poetry: it's main themes of war, death and glory gave way to more refined and elegant types. The courtly love tradition gave women a prominent place in the works of the Middle English period.
d. The courtly love tradition became a shaping factor in the history of western civilization, because among the most popular genres were the ballads and the romances, tales of love and adventure.
e. The Middle English hero was different from the hero in the time of Beowulf, because the heroic ideal was now found in the figure of the knight, who combined courage and strength with gentle manners and reverence for women in general and his own lady in particular. The hero in the time of Beowulf was fighting against monsters and he also had inhuman qualities.
The Renaissance (1500-1660)
Textbook p. 32-33
1. De term 'Renaissance' betekent letterlijk 'wedergeboorte' en die valt te verklaren doordat er hernieuwde interesses kwamen van de culturen van het oude Rome en Griekenland.
2. Humanisten zijn mensen waarvoor de Griekse en Romeinse cultuur hun ideaal werd. Twee beroemde humanisten zijn Erasmus en Thomas More.
3. De term Utopia gebruiken we nu nog voor de ideale staat of een ideale situatie. We komen aan die term doordat het een onhaalbare ideaal is.
4. De individuele mens wordt steeds belangrijker. Dat valt waar te nemen in de economie: de opkomst van het kapitalisme, in de godsdienst: opkomst van het protestantisme en in de kunst: opkomst van individuele kunstwerken.
5. De homo universalis betekent dat ieder mens een individu is met een eigen persoonlijkheid.
6. Memento mori betekent gedenk de dood.
Carpe diem betekent pluk de dag. Ze hebben betrekking op dat men wist dat ze uiteindelijk dood gingen en dus dat men het beste van hun leven moest maken, doordat het eigenlijk maar van korte duur was.
7. De relatie kerk en wetenschap was veranderd in het opzicht dat de kerk niet blij was met de wetenschap die tegen de gedachten van de kerk inging.
8. De boekdrukkunst speelde zo'n belangrijke rol, omdat de ideën konden worden verspreid over een groter gebied, met een lagere prijs.
9. Galileo was een Renaissance denker, omdat hij bewees dat de aarde om de zon heen draaide en niet het middelpunt van het heelal was, wat men toen dacht en vertelde aan anderen.
The Neoclassical Period (1660-1800)
Textbook p. 58-59
Workbook p. 37 and 47
1. (page 37)
a. The various names for this period are: 1. The Neoclassical Period 2. The Augustan Age and 3. The Age of Reason. The names are suggestive; they tell us how we look back on the late 17th and 18th century, how people looked up themselves, learning something about the general character of the period.
1. The Neoclassical Period: the influence of ancient Greece and Rome; the great age of classicism.
2. The Augustan Age: refers to the Roman emperor Augustus, Englishmen of the 18th century found themselves in a similar position.
3. The Age of Reason: a calm and balanced judgement, not hinderend by personal emotions.
b. The names are misleading, because the portrait of the Neoclassical Period (a combination of high ideals together with a painful awareness that the actual world falls short of them) formed the official 'face' of English literature during the greater part of the period (as in the higher circles of society), but it wasn't the only face of literature of the time (like the book Robinson Crusoe).
c. The situation has changed in the eighteenth century, because he had no part in the Neoclassical Period. He wanted literature of his own.
d. Satire is such a popular genre in the eighteenth century, because a brief glance at the world outside however, showed that this utopia was still some way off, and that human actions were all too often guided by other things than Reason alone.
e. The rise of the novel is closely linked with particular development in society, because it became so popular that man could earn money with it. So these writers became richer when their novels became popular. It was popular by the common people.
8. (workbook p. 47 and textbook p. 71-73) Jane Austen from: Pride and Prejudice
a. The major themes in Jane Austen's novels are love between a single man in posession of a good fortune and a single (poor) woman.
b. The second sentence change this idea, because the feelings for each other are less important than the statue of the man.
c. Two character descriptions given on the basis of the dialogue: Mrs Bennet wants the best for her daughters and likes to gossip. Mr Bennet doesn't say much and he tries to be uninterested.
d. Some striking features: The parents of daughters want their daughters to marry a rich man, the feelings are less important. The man is standing above his wife, he's the head of the family.
e. Some irony and misunderstanding can be find in the senteces 13-14 and 27-29.
f. The objective sort of character description is not entirely absent, because the story doesn't excist of only dialogues, and in these parts the objective sort of character description isn't entirely absent.
The Romantic Period (1800-1830)
Textbook p. 74-75
Workbook p. 48 and 51
a. The Romantic Period in England was the combined result of the Industrial Revolution and the French Revolution in 1789.
The Industrial Revolution because it was turning England from an agricultural nation into an industrial one.
The French Revolution because it was a source of inspiration to those people who felt that the whole structure of society should be changed.
The Industrial Revolution happened really in England and the French Revolution was a source for realizing it.
The eighteenth century: by Reason, poet is the voice of polite society, Alexander Pope, strong emotional appeal.
The Romantic Period: 1798, Lyrical Ballads, non-rational forces of emotion, intuition and imagination, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley, Keats and Byron.
c. Idealization plays a role in:
- the attitude to nature
- disappointment with the present often inspired a renewed interest in an idealized past
- popularity of supernatural elements
3. (workbook p. 51 and textbook p. 78)
a. In the poem somebody (who tells this poem) loves to hear the voice of the girl, she's singing in the field.
b. The poem is basically about an experience, the poet sees a lonely girl who is working the fields somewhere in the Scottish Highlands.
c. The function of the distant countries mentioned in the second stanza is to tell the reader how special her voice sounds.
d. The poet doesn't hear what the girl is singing, because he can't even hear the words of the song she's singing. But it wouldn't make any difference, because the girl would still make a profound impression on the poet. The sound of her voice wouldn't change if he could hear the words of her song.
e. Various indications to the mood of the girl's singing: melancholy tune, plaintive numbers. It could refer to his mood at that time.
f. They are both a couplet. The ones who are telling the poems are both alone, in the nature. They both see or hear something (the joy the sight of the daffodils gave him and the joy of hearing the girl's voice), and the experience is one of lasting value (the poet won't forget it).
The Victorian Age (1830-1900)
Textbook p. 88-89
Workbook p. 57 and 66
a. Industrial Revolution
positive: England played a prominent role in world affairs, optimism and confidence in what man could achieve, the age of the novel, poetry lingered on escaping the realities of everyday life.
Negative: it had widened the gap between the rich and the poor, evolution meant for many Victorians doubt and anxiety, uncertainty and pessimism.
b. Publication of Charles Darwin's Origin of Species.
Positive effects: some people saw it as one more illustration of the popular idea of progress and perfectibility.
Negative effects: for many people it questioned the things they had always believed in (especially by religion).
c. The nineteenth century is the age of the novel. Two reason why this form could become so important are:
- A host of major and minor novelists set out to satisfy the tastes of the middle classes (the backbone of society)
- Most authors show at least an awareness of the social problems of the day.
c. Dickens address himself in writing Oliver Twist to the poorer classes. Some of them were shocked by the book, because the book established his reputation as a social reformer.
4. (page 66)
a. The people live there very lonely, because they live in the country. They don’t meet often other persons from another place or city. Even the people there were quite standoffish from each other and especially to a stranger. There wasn’t a real peaceful atmosphere there and in the house everything looked so dark.
b. The people don’t really like the stranger so Heathcliff doesn’t really like Lockwood too. Their lifes are different, they didn’t really have anything in common. They looked upon with contempt.
c. He got to know more about the history of the persons in Wuthering Heights, because he read a diary. So because of that he could understand them better.