Program Details

The Nineteenth Century Origins of American Feminist Literature 

Jeff Morgan
Arts & Letters / Other

Course Description

This series will explore how these American authors, Sarah Orne Jewett, Mary Wilkins Freeman, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Kate Chopin pioneered the rise of American Feminist Literature. Each session will cover one or two short stories from one of these writers. The story will be projected on the screen and, after some brief historical context and biographical detail on the author, the story will be analyzed  from various lenses: feminism, realism, and regionalism. The formalist approach will be used, breaking down these stories for plot, tone, character, symbol, setting, and point of view to explore the themes that arise from under each lens. The series will proceed in a chronological order. At the end of each lecture, there will be time for questions and answers. As one can tell by the dates, this series will hone in on this extraordinary span of time. 


  1. 1886: Sarah Orne Jewett's A White Heron
  2. 1891: Mary Wilkins Freeman's A New England Nun
  3. 1892: Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper
  4. 1893 and 1894: Kate Chopin's Desiree's Baby and The Story of an Hour

About the Instructor

  • Jeff Morgan, PhD, is an English professor at Lynn University, and the author of Sarah Orne Jewett's Feminine Pastoral Vision: The Country of the Pointed Firs and edited a 2003 edition of her novel. His latest book, American Comic Poetry, appeared in 2015. An educator for nearly 40 years, Morgan is also the author of numerous essays and poems. He earned his B.A. in English from Ohio University, his M.A. in English from Pan American University, and his PhD in English from Case Western Reserve University.

Upcoming programs presented by Jeff Morgan.

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