Synopses & Reviews
Which John Dryden should be brought into the twenty-first-century college classroom? The rehabilitator of the ancients? The first of the moderns? The ambivalent laureate? The sidelined convert to Rome? The literary theorist? The translator? The playwright? The poet? This volume in the MLA series Approaches to Teaching World Literature addresses the tensions, contradictions, and versatility of a writer who, in the words of Samuel Johnson, "found [English poetry] brick, and left it marble," who was, in the words of Walter Scott, "one of the greatest of our masters."
Part 1, "Materials," offers a guide to the teaching editions of Dryden's work and a discussion of the background resources, from biographies and literary criticism to social, cultural, political, and art histories. In part 2, "Approaches," essays describe different pedagogical entries into Dryden and his time. These approaches cover subjects as various as genre, adaptation, literary rivalry, musical setting, and political and religious poetry in classroom situations that range from the traditional survey to learning through performance.
"Dryden is a major figure of the Restoration, writing in almost all of its important genres. This volume is a valuable addition to the series."
--James Evans, University of North Carolina, Greensboro
Table of Contents
PART ONE: MATERIALS
Primary Works 3
Online Resources, Recordings, and Artwork 7
Background Materials and Criticism 10
Further Reading Recommendations 12
Survey Issues 13
PART TWO: APPROACHES
John Dryden's Trojan Horse: Religio Laici Anna Battigelli 30
Dryden the Elegist: "To the Memory of Mr. Oldham" and "To the Pious Memory of . . . Anne Killigrew" Cedric D. Reverand II 37
Reading Dryden's Verse: Generic Control in the Killigrew Ode and Oldham Elegy John Richetti 44
Dryden's Sweet Saint: The Killigrew Ode in the Survey Course Deborah Kennedy 53
A King and No King: How to Use Dryden's Engagement of the Reader in Absalom and Achitophel Christopher D. Johnson 58
Absalom and Achitophel in an Eighteenth-Century Survey Course Kirstin R. Wilcox 64
Restoring Dryden to the Core Curriculum: Groups, Crowds, and the Poetry of Public Occasion Ann A. Huse 69
Forward from "Mac Flecknoe": British Literature, 1660
to the Present Scott R. MacKenzie 75
Introducing John Dryden the Dramatic Margaret Anne Doody 81