English Literature MA

Writing the English Revolution: Literature, Politics and Religion from Milton to Marvell ENGLIT4114

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Critical Studies
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course examines the writings of John Milton and his contemporaries - including John Dryden, Andrew Marvell, and Thomas Hobbes - within the context of the English Revolution and its aftermath. These writings, from pamphlets to poetry, were at the heart of debates on politics, religion, marriage, monarchy and civil society.


 1 x 2hr seminar per week over ten weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.


This is one of the Honours options in English Literature and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Excluded Courses

ENGLIT4030 Writing the English Revolution


Word-mapping Exercise (1500 words): 25%

Essay (3000 words): 50%

Seminar presentation of 7 minutes: 15%

Seminar contribution: 10%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course will provide the opportunity to:

■ study a range of poetry and prose written in the seventeenth century 

■ consider these texts in the light of critical and historical approaches to radical political change 

■ understand the relationship between literature, history, politics and religion in a period where the boundaries are blurred 

■ develop independent research skills through formulating and researching essay topics with appropriate guidance

■ develop skills in the art of critical writing at the appropriate level.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ write an assessment of available critical and historical approaches to the English Revolution, and identify the approaches that they find most convincing 

■ critically assess the language and themes of the literature of the English Revolution

■ write in a critical and informed way about genres and techniques in seventeenth-century literature 

■ develop an autonomous research interest in the field of the English Revolution 

■ communicate responses to the material studied on the course both orally and in written form through coherent and sustained argument.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.