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Lektüreliste Englische Literaturwissenschaft und Amerikanistik

(seit Juni 2002, verbindlich ab Sommersemester 2003)

Diese Lektüreliste dient als Leitfaden zum Erwerb von Überblickskenntnissen der Geschichte der englischen und irischen Literatur, der amerikanischen Literatur und Kultur sowie der New Literatures in English. Sie eignet sich auch als Orientierungshilfe bei der Vertiefung dieser Kenntnisse und der Bildung persönlicher Interessenschwerpunkte. Die mit Sternchen versehenen Titel sind zu verstehen als ein Fundament an Texten, die alle Anglist(inn)en kennen sollten und deren Kenntnis für die Zwischenprüfung vorausgesetzt wird. Bei Werken, deren Lektüre in Auszügen oder in Auswahl empfohlen wird, sollte sich diese an The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 2 vols. Eds. M.H. Abrams and Stephen Greenblatt. (New York: Norton, 71999), an The Arnold Anthology of British and Irish Literature. Eds. Robert Clark and Thomas Healy. (London: Arnold, 1997) sowie an The Norton Anthology of American Literature. 2 vols. Ed. Nina Baym et al. (New York: Norton, 51998) und an A More Perfect Union. 2 vols. Ed. Paul F. Boller and Ronald Story. (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2000) orientieren. In diesen Anthologien findet sich auch die Mehrzahl der aufgeführten Texte.

English Literature


*Beowulf (translation)

(c. 1375)

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (translation)

(c. 1500)



Thomas Wyatt (1503-1542).

Selection of two poems

Sir Philip Sidney (1554-1586)

Selection of two poems from Astrophil and Stella (1582)

Edmund Spenser (c.1552-1599)

*The Faerie Queene, Book 1 (1589); Selection of three poems from Amoretti (1595)

Thomas More (?1477-1535)

Utopia (1516)

Thomas Kyd (1558-1594)

The Spanish Tragedy (1592)

Ben Jonson (1572/3-1637)

Volpone, or the Fox (1607)


Alexander Pope (1688-1744)

Essay on Criticism (1711)

Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)

”The Vanity of Human Wishes” (1749)

William Wycherley (1641-1715)

The Country Wife (1675)

Aphra Behn (1640-1689)

Oroonoko, or the History of the Royal Slave (1688)

Laurence Sterne (1713-1768)

Tristram Shandy (1765), A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy (1768)


William Blake (1757-1827)

Selection of six poems

William Wordsworth (1770-1850)

*”Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey” (1798), *”A Slumber Did My Spirit Seal” (1800); Selection of two other poems

Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797)

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792)

Horace Walpole (1717-1797)

The Castle of Ortranto (1764)

Mary Shelley (1797-1851)

Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus (1818)


Elizabeth Barrett-Browning

Selection of two poems

Alfred Tennyson (1809-1892)

Selection of two poems from In Memoriam A.H.H. (1850) and five more poems

Emily Brontë (1818-1848)

*Wuthering Heights (1847)

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

*The Importance of Being Earnest (1895)

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

*Mrs Warren’s Profession (1898), Major Barbara (1905)


T.S. Eliot (1888-1965)

*”The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” (1915), The Waste Land (1922) and two more poems

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)

”The Wild Swans at Coole” (1917), *”Sailing to Byzantium” (1927); Selection of four other poems

D.H. Lawrence (1885-1930)

*Sons and Lovers (1913)

John Millington Synge (1871-1909)

The Playboy of the Western World (1907)

Sean O’Casey (1880-1964)

The Plough and the Stars (1926), The Shadow of a Gunman (1923)


Philip Larkin (1922-1985)

*”High Windows” (1974); Selection of two more poems

Charles Tomlinson (b. 1927)

Selection of three poems

George Orwell (1903-1950)

*Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949)

Samuel Beckett (1906-1989)

*Waiting for Godot (1955)

Alan Ayckbourn (b. 1939)

A Man of the Moment (1990)

Irish Literature and Culture

*Basic texts

a) Fiction

Maria Edgeworth (1767-1849)

Castle Rackrent (1800)

Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu (1814-1873)

Uncle Silas (1864), In a Glass Darkly (1871) ("Green Tea," "Carmilla")

Roddy Doyle (b.1958)

The Commitments (1989)

b) Drama

Dion Boucicault (1820-1890)

The Colleen Bawn (1860), The Shaughraun (1875)

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

John Bull's Other Island (1904)

Dermot Bolger (b. 1959)

The Lament of Arthur Cleary (1989), In High Germany (1990)

c) Poetry

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)

Selected poems, among them "The Lake Isle of Innisfree," (1893) "An Irish Airman Foresees His Death," (1919) "Easter 1916," (1921), "The Second Coming," (1921), "Sailing to Byzantium," (1928), "The Man and the Echo" (1939)

Austin Clarke (1896-1974)

Selected poems, among them "The Lost Heifer" (1925), "The Scholar" (1929), "The Last Republicans" (1963)

Paul Muldoon (b. 1955)

Selected poems, among them "Cuba" (1980), "My Father and I and Billy Two Rivers" (1983)

d) Political Statements on Colonization, Nationalism, a National Literature, and Cosmopolitanism

Standish O'Grady (1832-1915)

History of Ireland I, extracts (1878)

Douglas Hyde (1860-1949)

"The Necessity for De-Anglicising Ireland" (1892)

Gerry Adams (b. 1948)

"The Politics of Irish Freedom," extracts (1986)

e) Standard Anthology

The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing. Ed. Seamus Deane. 3 vols. Derry: Field Day

Publications / New York: Norton, 1991.

New English Literatures

a) Africa

Selection of twelve poems from representative readers, e.g. The Heinemann Book of African Poetry in English, ed. Adewale Maja-Pearce (Oxford, 1990)

Olive Schreiner (1855-1920)

The Story of an African Farm (1883)

Athol Fugard (b. 1932)

Boesman and Lena (1969)

Wole Soyinka (b. 1934)

Death and the King’s Horseman (1975)

b) The Caribbean

Selection of twelve poems from representative readers, e.g. Breaklight: An Anthology of Caribbean Poetry, ed. Andrew Salkey (London, 1971)

Claude McKay (1890-1948)

Banana Bottom (1933)

Caryl Phillips (b. 1958)

Cambridge (1991)

c) India/Pakistan

Selection of twelve poems from representative readers, e.g. Indian Poetry in English: A Literary History and Anthology, ed. A.N. Dwivedi (New Delhi, 1980)

Rohinton Mistry (b. 1952)

A Fine Balance (1995)

d) Australia/New Zealand

Selection of twelve poems from representative readers, e.g. The Penguin Book of Australian Verse, ed. Harry P. Heseltine (Ringwood, Victoria, 1972) and The Penguin Book of New Zealand Poetry, ed. Miriam Evans et al. (Auckland, 1989)

Patrick White (1912-1990)

Voss (1957)

Keri Hulme (b. 1947)

The Bone People (1983)

e) Canada

Selection of twelve poems from representative readers, e.g. The New Oxford Book of Canadian Verse in English, ed. Margaret Atwood (Toronto, 1982)

Malcolm Lowry (1909-1957)

Under the Volcano (1947)

James Reaney (b. 1926)

The Donellys: Sticks and Stones (1974)

Sharon Pollock (b. 1936)

Doc (1986)

American Literature and Culture

  1. COLONIAL PERIOD / 15th through 18th CENTURY

Christopher Columbus (1451-1506)

"Letter to Luis Santangel Regarding the First Voyage" (1493)

Bartolomé de las Casas (1474-1566).

The Very Brief Relation of the Devastation of the Indies (1552); extracts

John Smith (1580-1632)

General History of Virginia, New England and the Summer Isles (1624); extracts

Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)

"Personal Narrative" [Spiritual Autobiography] (1740),

"Sinners in the Hands of An Angry God" (1741)


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

*The Autobiography (1771-1790); extracts. Further selections of writings, among them "The Way to Wealth" (1757)

Thomas Jefferson (1734-1826)

Notes on the State of Virginia; esp. Query XIX (1787), "First Inaugural Address" (1801)

Charles Brockden Brown (1771-1810)

Wieland (1798), Edgar Huntly (1799)

  1. 19th CENTURY I

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

*"Rip Van Winkle" (1819), *"The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" (1820); further extracts from The Sketch Book (1819-20)

James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851)

The Pioneers (1823)

Herman Melville (1819-1891)

Moby Dick (1851)

Selected stories, among them *"Bartleby, the Scrivener" (1853), "Benito Cereno" (1855), "Billy Budd, Sailor" (1891)

  1. 19th CENTURY II

Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882)

Selected poems, among them "A Psalm of Life" (1838)

Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

"The Gettysburg Address" (1863)

Stephen Crane (1871-1900)

The Red Badge of Courage (1895)

Selected stories, among them *"The Open Boat" (1897), "The Blue Hotel" (1898), "The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky" (1898)

  1. 20th CENTURY I

  1. Prose

Edith Wharton (1862-1937)

The Age of Innocence (1920)

Frank Norris (1870-1902)

The Octopus (1901)

Richard Wright (1908-1960)

Native Son (1940), "The Man Who Was Almost a Man" (1939)

  1. Drama

Eugene O’Neill (1888-1953)

*Emperor Jones (1920), The Hairy Ape (1922), All God’s Chillun Got Wings (1924), A Long Day’s Journey into Night (1956)

Elmer Rice (1892-1967)

The Adding Machine (1923)

Arthur Miller (b. 1915)

*Death of a Salesman (1949), The Crucible (1953)

  1. Poetry

Robert Frost (1874-1963)

Selected poems, among them "The Vantage Point" (1913), "After Apple Picking" (1914), "Mending Wall" (1914), "The Road Not Taken" (1916), "Birches" (1916), *"Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening" (1923), "Spring Pools" (1928)

Carl Sandburg (1878-1967)

Selected poems, among them "Chicago" (1914), "Fog" (19169, "Grass" (1918)

Langston Hughes (1902-1967)

Selected poems, among them "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" (1921), "Theme for English B." (1951), "Harlem" (1967)

  1. 20th CENTURY II

  1. Prose

Katherine Anne Porter (1890-1980)

Selected stories, among them "Old Mortality" (1939), "Flowering Judas" (1929)

Earl Warren (1891-1974)

"Brown v. The Board of Education of Topeka" (1954)

Jay McInerney (b. 1955)

Bright Lights, Big City (1984)

  1. Drama

Alice Childress (1920-1994)

Wine in the Wilderness (1969)

Edward Albee (b. 1928)

The Zoo Story (1959), *Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (1962)

David Henry Hwang (b. 1957)

M. Butterfly (1988)

  1. Poetry

Robert Lowell (1917-1977)

"Mr. Edwards and the Spider" (1946), "The Quaker Graveyard in Nantucket" (1946), "For the Union Dead" (1960)

Allen Ginsberg (1926-1997)

"Howl" (1956) and *"A Supermarket in California" (1956)

Michael Harper (b. 1938)

"Dear John, Dear Coltrane" (1970)


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