Online textbook access

This digital anthology offers the potential delight of a full banquet of tasty readings. The range of British Literature: Middle Ages to lớn the Eighteenth Century và Neoclassism encourages old curmudgeons with its full plate of nourishing more

Comprehensivenessrating:4see less

This digital anthology offers the potential delight of a full banquet of tasty readings. The range of British Literature: Middle Ages to the Eighteenth Century & Neoclassism encourages old curmudgeons with its full plate of nourishing dishes. However, one rues that the menu does not include some neglected favorites. Where is that wondrous allegory of William Langlvà with his dream & seven deadly sins? Where is that first English autobiography of the wildly mystical Margery Kempe? Where is that most significant literary publication of Tyndale’s or King James’ Bible? Or, for that matter, the sublime phrases of Thomas Cranmer’s Book of Common Prayer? And why not, instead of so many John Donne & Robert Herriông xã poems, substitute the humble, but very accessible, poetry of George Herbert? Where are bits of the Wesley brothers, especially any hymns of Charles (và any of Cowper and Newton’s Olney hymns—one short sertháng of John’s would suffice)? Why Moll Flanders over Robinson Crusoe? And then, with a wink và a bit of mischief, where is that classic flyting of Dunbar và friends? (I can underst&, but not enjoy, the exclusion of that Scottish makar, Robbie Burns, but he would add such spice to the gathering.) Nevertheless, such a work revives a worthwhile history that slips away while publishers print more ephemeral works. (PS. For what it is worth, one other reviewer recommended Swift’s “The Lady’s Dressing Room” khổng lồ balance Like Montagu’s response & I concur.) I applaud the merry inclusion of comic literature (e.g. Chaucer & Swift) with the pious & solemn. Third, the succinct introductions provide basic instructional historical context & literary insight inlớn the readings. While one wishes for more explanation of literary allusions, such an encyclopedic addition would be too cumbersome. (Such will be the responsibility of the individual professor.) Adding the Reviews questions supplies both a focus for the introductory student và a gentle prompt khổng lồ think critically. One of the better notations is Tolkien’s riddles connected lớn the Exeter bits lượt thích “The Bookworm”.Finally, a glossary, vocabulary sida, và relevant footnotes would be helpful for students, as with Latin phrases, this line from Beowulf: “Oft Scyld the Scefing from scathers in numbers”, or the Middle English of Sir Gawain và the Green Knight. I vày think that a brief identification of “Key Terms” might work khổng lồ the book’s advantage. So, too, an index & dates of publication would be quite useful.

Bạn đang xem: Online textbook access

Content Accuracyrating:5


In an era in which historical literature wanes, the relevance of this material looms greatly. Its longevity has already been demonstrated by its inclusion. Its relevance, in a culture tainted by chronological snobbery, is crucial to correct our intellectual myopia.


The introductions to lớn each period provide solid & manageable material, without adding the academic nuances regarding each text. As such, students can access the larger picture and be prepared lớn have sầu an enjoyable first meeting with the writings. However, there are “foreign” language phrases throughout that students may stumble over or ignore. Can one clarify or translate them for the readers. Nevertheless, the reflective questions enable confused students to gain a clearer perspective on what it is they just read.


The structure of the anthology is blessedly consistent. Its framework follows a logical & chronological order as clear as bread crumbs on a path into lớn a dense forest. The unit Introductions và the Recommended Readings allow the students to lớn get her bearings and proceed with a maps in their cluttered minds.


The modularity works well for an introductory text. It doesn’t complicate what graduate programs will. It integrates various literary genres into lớn a recognizable time period, suggesting liên kết among the texts.

Xem thêm:


As a firm advocate of historical chronology, rather than genre or topic, I celebrate the organizational flow. For students to learn that writers stvà on the shoulders of other writers, that originality is grounded in imitation as much as inspiration, is foundational for learning (& for humility). One can easily learn where one stands.However, with other reviewers, I would murmur, complain, and grumble over the laông chồng of line numbers for the poetical texts. Such navigational aids enhance teaching and learning. To enable cthua trận readings with students, one must be able lớn guide them directly to lớn the verse in question.


Students who are very adept at navigating all manner of digital material will find the interface quite slow & frustrating. The difficulty is in transferring from one writing to lớn another, as the collection seemingly requires one to return lớn the Table of Contents. Scrolling takes much longer than clicking to a particular page. Perhaps a link lượt thích the “Find” on one’s Word documents might enable them to lớn traverse an interactive world of literature more efficiently. But as a Luddite, I can only see the problem và not know how khổng lồ fix it.

Grammatical Errorsrating:5

I looked & looked, but found no grammatical errors or editing mistakes, except in any Anglo-Saxon or Medieval writings where everything is misspelled (hah).

Cultural Relevancerating:5

The criteria of cultural relevance are overdetermined and too often introduce a fundamentadanh mục dogma. The inquisitive sầu và imaginative students will find more about their world by attending to lớn these historical texts than in taking another identity formation course, where the Procrustean bed of significance tends to lớn be ideologically driven & reductionistic. Cultural context for these writing, particularly in their religious Zeitgeist, would up the readings so that students could contrast the postmodern milieu with this Western tradition. These works actually show a diversity of thought and style that seems sorely lacking in contemporary writings.

Xem thêm:


To summarize my nhận xét, I am grateful for a lucid và compelling anthology that follows a chronological structure. The breadth of offerings is most commendable (other than my own peculiar biases mentioned at the beginning—where are the hymns & the wild flytings?) và forms a solid foundation for the student of British history and literature. I believe sầu that a more fluid interface with internal liên kết, an addition of line numbers for poetic texts, footnotes that clarify particularly obscure allusions & semantic differences, One other recommendation concerns the visual aspect of the text (the pictures are dull). What might provide a welcome break khổng lồ the readings is a germane image or illustration (maps are fine, but don’t provoke the imagination as much as a dramatic painting). For example, in dealing with Lady Montagu and Alexander Pope, include the fair use image of William Powell Frith’s “The Rejected Poet” (1863), to put flesh onlớn the word. Or include the illustrated frontispiece for works by Spenser (such as Knight Redcross) or Dryden—rather than their portraits. And think of all the potential dramatic images for Milton’s Paradise Lost! Let an image of Beelzebub wake up the student. This is a visual generation and such vivid works will work wonders on them. Nevertheless, I commend the authors of this anthology for the vision & labor of compiling such an inviting & accessible (& less expensive) work. For full disclosure, I have sầu assessed this anthology according to lớn a specialized criteria: namely, how does it fit with a study of British literature & religion và how does it expvà the usual selections, as presented in Alistair McGrath’s Christian Literature: An Anthology? I am impressed with its range from its initial offering of the The Dream of the Rood through The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, much of which contributes to my courses. And, of course, the opportunity lớn reduce the cost for students under enormous debt, is a main advantage.

Chuyên mục: literature