Studies in British Literature: The History of the British Novel

Language, Literature & Performing Arts
Course Code
ENGL 2119
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
This course traces the history of the British novel, emphasizing the 18th and the 19th centuries.
Course Content

All second-year English literature courses share the following features:

  1. Students are presumed to be proficient in the writing of critical essays on literary subjects.
  2. Students are required to read in the course subject area beyond the texts assigned by the instructor or discussed in class.
  3. Students are required to incorporate into their oral and written coursework secondary source materials. These may include autobiographical or biographical material; literary criticism or theory; unassigned texts by the author under study; relevant cultural or intellectual history; or other arts, such as music, film, or fine arts.
  4. Readings and topics will vary with each instructor’s presentation of a course; however, all course materials are consistent with the objectives/outcomes for this course.

In English 2119, students will examine a selection of novels from the 18th century onward, in order to trace the features and stages of the British novel as an evolving genre within its historical and social contexts.

Methods Of Instruction

Some or all of the following methods will be used:

  • Lecture/discussion;
  • Group work;
  • Peer editing;
  • Group or individual presentations;
  • Independent research;
  • Instructor feedback on students’ work; and
  • Individual consultation.
Means of Assessment
  1. A minimum of two formal academic essays, with a combined value of at least 40% of the course grade.
  2. A minimum of 80% of the course grade will be based on writing assignments (essays, essay-based exams, journals, paragraphs).  A maximum of 20% of the course grade may be based on informal writing (quizzes, short answer tests); oral reports/presentations; participation/preparation grades; and/or other non writing-intensive assignments.
  3. A minimum of 15% of the course grade will be based on in-class writing (essay or exam).

According to the College Evaluation Policy, the final grade awarded to each student shall consist of at least three separate assignments. No single assessment will be weighted at more than 40% of the final course grade.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of any second-year English literature course, the student should be able to

  1. use with increased proficiency the skills of literary analysis taught in first-year English courses;
  2. recognize the significance of the literary and non-literary or cultural context of a work being studied, such as the biographical, historical, mythological or philosophical context;
  3. read critically and use in essays secondary sources, such as criticism and other texts by the same author, as an aid to comprehending the primary text(s) being studied;
  4. read critically and independently works or aspects of works not discussed in class; and
  5. formulate a thesis on a given subject in one or more specific works, and to develop this thesis using suitable textual evidence.

Upon completion of English 2119, the student should also have a deepened understanding of

  1. different strategies of narrative development in fiction;
  2. the elements of fiction, such as plot, setting, character, and point-of-view;
  3. some of the major forms in the history of the British novel, such as picaresque, the epistolary novel, domestic fiction, the novel of manners, and social criticism; 
  4. patterns of both continuity and change within the genre of the British novel; and
  5. the exploration and interpretation of theme, including themes significant to the history of the British novel, such as the relationship between the individual and society. 
Textbook Materials

Sample reading list:

  • Defoe, Robinson Crusoe
  • Austen, Pride and Prejudice
  • Bronte, Jane Eyre
  • Dickens, Great Expectations
  • Hardy, Far from the Madding Crowd
  • Conrad, Nostromo
  • Weldon, The Heart of the Country



Any two university-transfer first-year English literature courses, or one university-transfer first-year English literature course and one university-transfer first-year Creative Writing or English writing course.                                                         


No corequisite courses.


No equivalent courses.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
Emily Carr University of Art & Design (EC) EC ENGL 200 lev (3) 2014/09/01 to -
Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) FDU ENGL 2XXX (3) 2014/09/01 to -
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU ENGL 2319 (3) 2014/09/01 to 2019/08/31
Langara College (LANG) LANG ENGL 2XXX (3) 2014/09/01 to -
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU ENGL 2XX (3) 2014/09/01 to -
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU ENGL 2XXX (3) 2014/09/01 to -
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU ENGL 2XX (3) 2014/09/01 to -
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) UBCO ENGL 2nd (3) 2014/09/01 to -
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) UBCV ENGL 227 (3) 2014/09/01 to -
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC ENGL 2XX (3) 2014/09/01 to -
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV ENGL 220 (3) 2014/09/01 to -
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC ENGL 2XX (1.5) 2014/09/01 to -
Vancouver Island University (VIU) VIU ENGL 2nd (3) 2014/09/01 to -

Course Offerings

Fall 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.