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En 106
Poetic Justice: Histories of Literature and Law
9 units (3-0-6)  | third term
How does literature help us to frame questions of equity and fairness? How do writers represent broad concepts like the "common good" or the "body politic," and what does poetry do in the world to shape political action and ideas? This course takes the long historical view on these questions, exploring the overlapping histories of law and literary representation within premodern and contemporary contexts. We will ask how literature thinks about problems of justice, violence, and mercy, and how the courtroom becomes a key site for representing the dramas of social inclusion and exclusion. Possible authors and texts include Dante, Chaucer, Langland, Shakespeare, and Behn. Not offered 2018-19.
Instructor: Jahner