ENGL 191 Golden Age of Piracy: Histories, Literature, Legends, and Myths

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The pirates who plundered the ships of the Spanish Main and cruised the coasts of Africa and the Americas both served and troubled conventional notions of race, gender, economics, law, and nationality in a period that saw the rise of Empire and the Atlantic slave trade, the American Revolution, and the wars of the early nineteenth century. The usually criminal and always liminal status of those who decided to “go upon the account” has attracted the attention of numerous authors and filmmakers who have cast them as brave iconoclasts, romantic heroes, and heartless villains. This class will explore representations of seventeenth and eighteenth-century pirates from their time to our own.

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