Approaches to Teaching Behn’s Oroonoko

  • Editors: Cynthia Richards, Mary Ann O'Donnell
  • Pages: xv & 227 pp.
  • Published: 2013
  • ISBN: 9781603291279 (Cloth)
  • ISBN: 9781603291286 (Paperback)

Oroonoko is an excellent choice for this series because of its popularity in an exceptionally broad range of college and university courses, and this volume does an excellent job presenting the scholarly and pedagogical diversity used in teaching the work.”

—Richard Frohock, Oklahoma State University

Once merely a footnote in Restoration and eighteenth-century studies and rarely taught, Oroonoko; or, The Royal Slave (1688), by Aphra Behn, is now essential reading for scholars and a classroom favorite. It appears in general surveys and in courses on early modern British writers, postcolonial literature, American literature, women’s literature, drama, the slave narrative, and autobiography.

Part 1 of this volume, “Materials,” provides not only resources for the teacher of Oroonoko but also a brief chronology of Behn’s life and work. In part 2, “Approaches,” essays offer a diversity of perspectives appropriate to a text that challenges student assumptions and contains not one story but many: Oroonoko as a romance, as a travel account, as a heroic tragedy, as a window to seventeenth-century representations of race, as a reflection of Tory-Whig conflict in the time of Charles II.

Sharon Alker
Emily Hodgson Anderson
Srinivas Aravamudan
Ana de Freitas Boe
Erik Bond
Keith M. Botelho
Vincent Carretta
Ashley Cross
Laura Doyle
Karen Gevirtz
Derek Hughes
Scott J. Juengel
Thomas W. Krise
Joyce Green MacDonald
Roberta C. Martin
Shawn Lisa Maurer
Jane Milling
Jessica Munns
Holly Faith Nelson
Bill Overton
Leslie Richardson
Laura J. Rosenthal
Margarete Rubik
Laura L. Runge
Jane Spencer
Laura M. Stevens
James Grantham Turner
Rose Zimbardo

Preface

PART ONE: MATERIALS

Mary Ann O’Donnell

Basic Resources

Editions

Classroom Texts

Online Editions

Concordances

Bibliographies

Biographies

Monographs

Collected Essays

Book Chapters and Articles

Discussions of Race and Slavery

Historical Approaches

Comparative Approaches

Surinam

Other Approaches

Maps and Illustrations

Additional Online Resources

Chronology

PART TWO: APPROACHES

Introduction

Cynthia Richards

Formal and Thematic Contexts

What Kind of Story Is This?

Srinivas Aravamudan

Credibility and Truth in Oroonoko

Keith M. Botelho

Oroonoko: Romance to Novel

Rose Zimbardo

The Language of Oroonoko

Bill Overton

Oroonoko and the Heroics of Virtue

Shawn Lisa Maurer

Cultural Contexts

Oroonoko and Blackness

Derek Hughes

Economic Oroonoko

Karen Gevirtz

The Traffic of Women: Oroonoko in an Atlantic Framework

Laura M. Stevens

Entering Atlantic History: Oroonoko, Revolution, and Race

Laura Doyle

Writing War in Oroonoko

Sharon Alker and Holly Faith Nelson

Oroonoko as a Caribbean Text

Thomas W. Krise

Pedagogical Contexts

How Big Did She Say That Snake Was? Teaching the Contradiction in Oroonoko

James Grantham Turner

Teaching Oroonoko in a Literature Survey 1 Course

Ana de Freitas Boe

Teaching Oroonoko in a Literature Survey 2 Course

Ashley Cross

Teaching Oroonoko in the Travel Narrative Course

Margarete Rubik

Teaching Oroonoko at a Historically Black University

Leslie Richardson

Teaching the Teachers: Oroonoko as a Lesson in Critical Self-Consciousness

Erik Bond

Comparative Contexts

Oroonoko’s Cosmopolitans

Laura J. Rosenthal

Teaching Oroonoko with Milton and Dryden; or, Behn’s Use of the Heroic

Laura L. Runge

Teaching Oroonoko with Early Modern Drama

Joyce Green MacDonald

Unbearable Theater: Oroonoko’s Sentimental Afterlife

Scott J. Juengel

Two Oroonokos: Behn’s and Bandele’s

Jessica Munns

Representations of Race, Status, and Slavery in Behn’s Oroonoko and Equiano’s Interesting Narrative

Vincent Carretta

Authorial Contexts

The Early Modern Body in Behn’s Poetry and Oroonoko

Roberta C. Martin

Oroonoko and the Problem of Teaching Novelty

Emily Hodgson Anderson

Transatlantic Crossing: Teaching Oroonoko with The Widdow Ranter

Jane Milling and Cynthia Richards

Behn and the Canon

Jane Spencer

Notes on Contributors

Survey Participants

Works Cited

Index

Series Page