Canisius College n the fall of 2015, I had the opportunity to teach Susanna Rowson's Sincerity thanks to the hard work of Duncan Faherty and Ed White and their Just Teach One project. I included the novel in an upper-level undergraduate course titled "The Rise of the American Novel, 17981853." The syllabus was divided into three units: "The New Republic," with Charles Brockden Brown and Rowson; "The American Frontier," with Lydia Maria Child and Catherine Maria Sedgwick; and "The American Renaissance," with Nathaniel Hawthorne, Fanny Fern, and William Wells Brown. My goals for the class were to familiarize students with the concept of recovery, deconstruct the linear narrative of the American novel, and reveal to them the anxiety and excitement surrounding print, specifically the novel. Sincerity supported these goals perfectly. Rowson represented a recovered author, and Sincerity offered an exciting publishing history with its first printing as a serialized novel within the pages of the Boston Weekly Magazine in 1803 and 1804 and its subsequent reprinting in book form in 1813. While teaching the novel, I discovered that Sincerity's initial serial publication has particular importance for provoking class discussion on the text's moral message. Sincerity's critique of marriage
Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers – University of Nebraska Press
Published: Jun 20, 2017
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