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ENGC48H3 Lecture Notes - English Literature, Novum Organum, Scientific Revolution

Course Code
Steven Minuk

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Satire Lecture 4
(The Alchemist)
deliberate discrepancy between what one actual does and what one says or believes
derived from the greek word eironia which means " a lie"
rhetorical technique
satire uses irony because it wants to discover the truth about its content
Paradox, Antithesis, Parody Colloquialism, Anticlimax, Topicality, Obscenity, Violence,
Vividness, Exaggeration
Sermones: chats, discussions
Comedy does not have the same topicality as satire
Satire is very topical
But still comedy and satire overlap a lot so it's hard to separate the two – this is evident with
The Alchemist.
Obscenity & Violence: People are not always comfortable with this
James I
Elizabeth dies and there's a problem of who's going to be the next monarch
She is succeeded by James I and VI. James was son of Mary Queen of Scots. He reigns
until 1625.
Jacobean (Jacobeus is a latin word for James) = adjective to decribe events and writings
during period of James
Jacobean literature is a very rich period in the English language. Shakespeare, Donne,
Jonson, Marston.
Religious Tensions
Catholics attempted to blow up parliament
1606 = Parliament passed the Popish Recusants act – pple had to agree to deny the
Pope's authority over the king
Hampton Court Conference: creating better cooperation with the Puritans.
Anglican church was the official church.
Scientific Revolution
17th century – science emerges in England the continent
Aristotle's work was what passed as science up until this time (for 2000 years)
Scientists during this time started to revolt wanted people to stop reading books about
nature written by Aristotle, etc.
The revolution is a revolt against the past, obscurity in books, obscurity in language, and
it's a call to go out and discover things for yourself
Episteme: are paradigms
Francis Bacon publishes the New Organon (wanted people to think he was the new
Attacks on Alchemy
Alchemy was practiced during the Renaissance and even in the 17th century
Achemy was under continuous attack during the 17th century.
In the Alchemist, they abuse language, and when Johnson attacks Alchemy, he's just one
of the few critics?
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