This survey of English literature and culture from 1837-1901 will consider the tensions of a transitional era that flirted with and feared modernity. Among the subjects we will cover will be those that shaped the modern age: faith and doubt, bodies and machines, new technologies and media, science, sex and gender, empire, the function of art, and degeneration. Readings will consist not only of fiction, drama, and poetry, but also some historical writing, journalism, and criticism; texts will likely include works by Carlyle, Dickens, Ruskin, Tennyson, Darwin, Eliot, Braddon, Wilde, and others. Expectations include diligent preparation and active participation, along with some discussion leading and writing assignments.