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Daniel Defoe, The Shortest Way with Dissenters; Or, Proposals for the Establishment of the Church (1702)
This satirical pamphlet about the Church of England got Defoe into a whole lot of trouble.
Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe (1719)
Okay, so the full title is The Life and Strange Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York, Mariner. That about sums it up, doesn't it?
Eliza Haywood, Love in Excess; Or, The Fatal Inquiry (1720)
Haywood sticks up for women's rights in this novel.
Daniel Defoe, The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders (1722)
Don't you just love how many Fs there are in the title of this novel? Defoe's novel tackles gender (and other) issues head on.
Samuel Richardson, Pamela; or, Virtue Rewarded (1740)
Pamela, the heroine of Richardson's novel, is such a goody two-shoes that she manages to win over her oppressor, Mr. B, with her virtue.
Martin C. Battestin, The Providence of Wit: Aspects of Form in Augustan Literature and the Arts (1974; republished 2012)
If you want to understand issues of form in Augustan literature, you can start right here.
Steven N. Zwicker (Ed.), The Cambridge Companion to English Literature, 1650-1740 (1998)
This collection of essays covers the Augustan age and much more. It's a comprehensive introduction to the literature of the time.
Helen Deutsch, Resemblance & Disgrace: Alexander Pope and the Deformation of Culture (1996)
You'll learn a lot about Alexander Pope in this in-depth study about the author's super innovative style and themes.
John Richetti, The Life of Daniel Defoe: A Critical Biography (2005)
Learn more about the topsy-turvy life of one of the age's greatest writers in this biography, which also provides an analysis of his works.
Christopher Fox (Ed.) The Cambridge Companion to Jonathan Swift (2003)
This collection is packed with information about Swift and his writings.