Component

MA Public Opinion and Political Behaviour
BA Philosophy and Literature options

Final Year, Component 02

Final year Literature option(s) from list
CS316-6-FY
Democracy in Action
(30 CREDITS)

This module will allow third year students to do their final year project in an innovative and interdisciplinary way. The module seeks to give students the possibility to better understand their community, the issues it confronts and how to address them. Through the five step training of Citizens UK (1. Organise 2. Listen 3. Plan 4. Act 5. Negotiate) the students will learn the basics of community building and organising, which they will be able to practice and experience for themselves. Students will learn to build power and negotiate with local government on issues of local concern such as hate crime, transport, mental health and housing.

GV926-6-SP
International Current Affairs: Understanding our World
(15 CREDITS)

International Current Affairs (or Understanding Our World) aims to introduce you to cutting edge debates in international politics and media in the age of misinformation and post-truth. The module aims to prepare Essex students to be new generation of solution-focused graduates with a sophisticated understanding of the complexities of our interconnected world. Beyond the focus on the global North that usually dominate our understanding of international politics, the module will also provide insight into major events and crises in the global South, while reflecting on policies, how they are developed and their impact on the everyday life of citizens around the world.

HR370-6-FY
The Tudors and Stuarts on Film
(30 CREDITS)

Film shapes the views of more people regarding the past than any other medium. This is particularly true for early modern England, which has been a popular subject area for filmmakers. You’ll examine and analyse popular films dealing with England from the reigns of Henry VIII to Charles II, which were made from 1933 until the present. This module seeks to study the films as representations of the past, in the same way that historical novels, dramas and paintings are representations of the past.

LT320-6-FY
Post-War(s) United States Fiction
(30 CREDITS)

How has the American identity and purpose changed since World War Two? And how is this reflected in literature? Gain answers to these questions via a range of American texts. Analyse these works using a variety of critical approaches, considering social, political and cultural contexts since the Second World War.

LT321-6-SP
Possible Worlds: Science Fiction, Speculative Fiction, and Alternate History
(15 CREDITS)

Possible Worlds is a module on speculative fiction in its many guises. Encompassing science fiction, apocalyptic fiction, graphic novels, and alternate histories, the literature and cinema of possible worlds is concerned with the precarious routes leading to and from our own present, and is characterised by an acute sense of the volatility and contingency of history. These novels and films typically take as their starting point a hypothetical alteration in the course of events or a change in social or technological dynamics. From there, they extrapolate lines of development leading towards one or more possible worlds. In doing so, they serve to estrange us from the world as we find it and reawaken us to the variability and open-endedness of the human situation. After an introductory session on the history of science fiction, we will go on to look at nine major examples of the literature and cinema of possible worlds, drawing on a diverse group of modern and contemporary writers and filmmakers: from the pioneering work of H. G. Wells at the end of the Victorian period through the work of key twentieth-century figures such as Philip K. Dick and Ursula Le Guin to recent science fiction cinema. Topics and themes addressed on the module include, but are not limited to: time travel, alien encounters, evolution, alternate histories, superheroes, science fiction as philosophy, feminist science fiction, utopias and dystopias, and speculative treatments of race, gender, and sexuality.

LT347-6-AU
American Film Authors
(15 CREDITS)

How powerful is Hollywood? How do directors construct an image of the USA? Examine how directors have created America in the popular imagination. Study Hollywood auteurs (such as Chaplin, Hawks, Hitchcock, Welles and Ford) alongside others (such as Scorsese, Allen and Lee) while covering the breadth of US film history.

LT359-6-SP
Creative Writing: Oulipo and the Avant Garde
(15 CREDITS)

Are you an experienced writer or beginner? Interested in writing stories or poetry? Science fiction or detective fiction? We offer something for all! Explore the theory and practice of creative writing through the unique work of the Oulipo Workshop of Potential Literature, founded by Raymond Queneau in 1960.

LT364-6-AU
Cyborgs, Clones and the Rise of the Robots: Science Fiction
(15 CREDITS)

Science fiction has experimented with speculation about other worlds by means of time travels in time and space and other ways of living and being by crossing boundaries of different kinds including species and the human/machine. Some science fiction has imagined oppressive regimes, hierarchical societies characterised by brutality and enslavement. Other science fiction has used the speculative aspects of the genre to create radically new, imagined transformations of body and society brought about by scientific and technological inventions. This diversity of treatment in science fiction makes it a versatile genre which has appealed to feminist, postcolonial and Afrofuturist as much as to conservative approaches. The module focuses on a specific theme--what it means to be human--by exploring the robot, the cyborg and clone as well as the automaton and the vampire. The fears and desires are intense in the treatment of the human/animal/machine and when associated with reproduction and the figure of the alien in the world of the science fiction novel.

LT372-6-SP
Shakespeare: The Tragedies
(15 CREDITS)

To what degree are Hamlet, King Lear, Macbeth and Othello tragedies? How useful is this term in understanding them? Undertake a close reading of Shakespeare’s four great tragedies. Critically discuss recent issues about each, in groups and in your own work. Gain an understanding of their enduring and/or present significance.

LT380-6-SP
"There is a Continent Outside My Window" : United States and Caribbean Literatures in Dialogue
(15 CREDITS)

How do US writers imagine and represent the Caribbean? And vice versa? Deepen knowledge of American literature by examining poetic, fictional, nonfictional and dramatic works in a broader context. Investigate contemporary issues like the American Dream, what it means to be from the Americas, migration, and the question of language.

LT385-6-AU
The Story and Myth of the West
(15 CREDITS)

Investigate the myths surrounding the founding of the United States. Crossing disciplines of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and cinematic and theatrical texts, you compare the classic Western against a range of counter-narratives from black, Hispanic, latino, and aboriginal storytellers. This module interrogates the concept of a 'national literature', explores the relationship between folklore and contemporary society, and investigates the relationship between the Western as a narrative form, and the history of colonialism in the U.S.A.

LT390-6-AU
The Limits of Representation: The Holocaust in Literature and Film
(15 CREDITS)

This module considers the enduring significance of the events known as the Holocaust (or Shoah) as they enter representation and continue to shape our present responses to various forms of racism and violence against the Other. It explores how the Holocaust has been represented, appropriated and reconfigured by writers, poets and filmmakers over the past seven decades. We will examine the connections between history, trauma, and representation through an analysis of Holocaust testimonies, literature, film and visual media. How do novelists, poets, filmmakers and artists depict events that shatter traditional forms of comprehension and representation? How do imagination, memory and history coalesce in works of art? What is the relationship between aesthetics and ethics, and what are the limits of representation? The module looks at numerous examples of Holocaust literature and film, from short story and autobiographical novel, through lyric poetry, drama and graphic novel, to documentary and recent Academy Award-winning productions. We will discuss the issues of testimony and witnessing, the aestheticization and commercialization of trauma and suffering, and the moral, philosophical and cultural legacy of the Holocaust.

LT394-6-SP
Law and Literature
(15 CREDITS)
LT397-6-SP
Extinction: Looking back at the End of the World
(15 CREDITS)

How have writers, filmmakers, and artists imagined ecological disaster and the end of the world? What are our images of lost worlds and our stories of extinction, including our own as a species? In what ways have representations of apocalypse changed over the last 200 years? The module starts with fossil finds of extinct animals and severe weather in the nineteenth century, both of which led to a sense of impending doom, before addressing twentieth-century concerns about human fertility, pandemics, machine takeover, and environmental pollution. In our own age, biodiversity loss and reports of climate change make extinction an issue more pressing than ever before, leading scientists to suggest that ours is the Anthropocene – the sixth age of mass extinction and the first geological epoch for which homo sapiens is responsible. By exploring how natural and man-made disasters have variously been conceptualised in fiction, poetry, painting, photography and film, and across disciplinary boundaries from geology to philosophy to cultural studies, this module addresses some of our deepest fears about the future of the planet and about ourselves as a species, including our complex relations to non-humans and non-living materials.

LT399-6-AU
Video Game Theory
(15 CREDITS)
LT406-6-SP
Women and US Film
(15 CREDITS)
LT409-6-FY
Film Festivals
(30 CREDITS)
LT969-6-AU
Media, Politics and Society
(15 CREDITS)

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