Spring 2021 - ENGL 310 D100

Studies in Early Modern Literature to 1660 (4)

Class Number: 3969

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu, Th 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Apr 26, 2021
    3:30 PM – 6:30 PM

  • Prerequisites:

    Two 100 division English courses, and two 200 division English courses.



The study of non-Shakespearean Early Modern Literature. May be defined by genre, theme, or author.


Before Shakespeare  

This course will look at the dramatists that shaped Elizabethan drama before (and slightly after) Shakespeare began to write plays. We’ll study the single most popular play of the period, The Spanish Tragedy, and most of the works of Christopher Marlowe, Shakespeare’s great predecessor and collaborator. We’ll also read Lyly’s gender-bending play Galatea.


To understand the professional theatre of early modern England, especially in the formative years of the 1580s and early 90s.


  • Participation/presentation 15%
  • First essay 25%
  • Second essay 35%
  • Exam (take home, open book) 25%


Things to note:

Some of this literature contains material that many might find offensive. It contains explicit depictions of sexuality and violence. It also contains material that is, by our standards, racist and sexist. We shall be putting these representations into their cultural context to better understand them, but if you are offended by such historical material, please do not take this course.



Marlowe, Christopher. The Complete Plays. Eds Frank Romany and Robert Lindsey. Penguin Classics  

Kyd, Thomas. The Spanish Tragedy. Eds Andrew Gurr and J. R. Mulryne. Methuen.  

Lyly, John. Galatea. Ed. Leah Scragg. Manchester UP.

These plays are also available (without footnotes) as PDFs at https://earlymodernenglishdrama.folger.edu/featured-plays

Department Undergraduate Notes:

IMPORTANT NOTE Re 300 and 400 level courses: 75% of spaces in 300 level English courses, and 100% of spaces in 400 level English courses, are reserved for declared English Major, Minor, Extended Minor, Joint Major, and Honours students only, until open enrollment begins.

For all On-Campus Courses, please note the following:
- To receive credit for the course, students must complete all requirements.
- Tutorials/Seminars WILL be held the first week of classes.
- When choosing your schedule, remember to check "Show lab/tutorial sections" to see all Lecture/Seminar/Tutorial times required.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2021 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).