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Ch 23: NES ELA: English Literature in the 17th & 18th Century

About This Chapter

Dust off your knowledge of 17th and 18th century English literature for the National Evaluation Series (NES) English Language Arts (ELA) exam with these engaging video lessons.

NES ELA: English Literature in the 17th & 18th Century - Chapter Summary

Review important authors and literary works of 17th and 18th century England with these chapter resources. Get ready for the NES ELA exam with lessons on the following:

  • John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress
  • Milton's poetry and Paradise Lost
  • Essays and poetry of Alexander Pope
  • Restoration comedy
  • Major works of Daniel Defoe
  • Satire in the work of Jonathan Swift
  • Samuel Richardson and the epistolary novel
  • Gothic literature: Ann Radcliffe

You'll get up to speed quickly and easily with these short video lessons. Each lesson lasts between five and ten minutes and can be re-watched as many times as needed. Follow along with the written transcripts or use them to review.

NES ELA: English Literature in the 17th & 18th Century Objectives

This study guide prepares you for questions on 17th and 18th century English literature in the Analyzing and Interpreting Literature subarea of the NES ELA exam. This exam section is worth approximately 23% of the total test score. You'll need to demonstrate your knowledge of the thematic, formal and stylistic characteristics of various literary genres, periods and movements, as well as the ways in which historical, political and social factors influence literature.

The NES ELA exam is part of the licensure process for English teachers in some states. The test consists of 150 multiple-choice questions on reading, literature and communications. You'll have three hours to complete the exam. Use the practice questions included in this chapter to get an idea of some of the questions you'll be asked on the test.

12 Lessons in Chapter 23: NES ELA: English Literature in the 17th & 18th Century
Introduction to 17th- and 18th-Century Literature: Major Authors and Works

1. Introduction to 17th- and 18th-Century Literature: Major Authors and Works

A lot can happen in 200 years, as you'll see on our lesson that introduces you to British literature of the 17th and 18th centuries. Go from Shakespeare to the invention of the novel to the introduction of a prominent dictionary in our video below!

John Bunyan and Pilgrim's Progress

2. John Bunyan and Pilgrim's Progress

Pilgrim's Progress is a Christian allegory by John Bunyan. It was published in 1678 and is a highly influential work of religious text in the English language. Follow along as you learn about some of the most memorable characters from this novel.

Introduction to John Milton: Life and Major Poems

3. Introduction to John Milton: Life and Major Poems

English poet, essayist and political figure John Milton ranks right up there with William Shakespeare in a list of literary greats. Check out this lesson for an overview of Milton's life and most important works.

Milton's Paradise Lost: Summary, Theme, and Quotes

4. Milton's Paradise Lost: Summary, Theme, and Quotes

John Milton's 1667 epic poem 'Paradise Lost' is often considered one of the greatest works in the English language. Watch this lesson to learn about the text and its complicated themes.

Introduction to Alexander Pope: Biography, Essays and Poems

5. Introduction to Alexander Pope: Biography, Essays and Poems

Alexander Pope is one of the most quoted writers in the English language, which means you've probably heard his stuff before - you just don't know it yet. Watch this lesson for an overview of Pope's life and key works!

The Rape of the Lock: Pope's Mock Heroic Poetry

6. The Rape of the Lock: Pope's Mock Heroic Poetry

Alexander Pope is one of the premiere satirists in the English language, and The Rape of the Lock is his crowning achievement. Here, Pope writes about an incredibly trivial event as though it's a war involving gods and epic heroes. Watch our lesson for more details on this classic!

Restoration Comedy: Theatre of the 1700s

7. Restoration Comedy: Theatre of the 1700s

Despite their name, Restoration comedies have nothing to do with fixing up a theater. Rather, these were shockingly explicit works that were created after almost two decades of live performances being outlawed in England. Watch our video lesson to learn about this surprising and hilarious time in English theatrical history.

Introduction to Daniel Defoe: Biography and Major Works

8. Introduction to Daniel Defoe: Biography and Major Works

Castaways, pirates, spies and political prisoners. Some of it is fiction and some of it is the author's real life. In this lesson, you'll learn more about Daniel Defoe, one of England's most prolific and exciting authors.

Robinson Crusoe: Summary and Themes

9. Robinson Crusoe: Summary and Themes

In this lesson, we'll explore Daniel Defoe's 'Robinson Crusoe' while examining themes present in the work. You may also learn some handy skills if you ever find yourself shipwrecked and having to survive on an island for 28 years.

Jonathan Swift and Satire: Examples and Analysis

10. Jonathan Swift and Satire: Examples and Analysis

When it comes to English-language satire, few authors can top the legendary Jonathan Swift. Watch this lesson to learn about his two most important works, ~'A Modest Proposal~' and ~'Gulliver's Travels~'.

Samuel Richardson: Biography, Pamela and the Epistolary Novel

11. Samuel Richardson: Biography, Pamela and the Epistolary Novel

Samuel Richardson was the first writer to produce a true bestseller in the modern sense. Watch our lesson to learn about 'Pamela,' his groundbreaking epistolary novel.

Ann Radcliffe and Gothic Literature

12. Ann Radcliffe and Gothic Literature

Meet the mysterious Ann Radcliffe, a pioneering author who helped create the genre we know today as Gothic literature. As you learn more about her works and style, we'll also look at what constitutes a Gothic novel.

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Other Chapters

Other chapters within the NES English Language Arts: Test Practice & Study Guide course

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