Component

MA Public Opinion and Political Behaviour
BA English and Comparative Literature options

Year 2, Component 05

Option(s) from list
LT203-5-FY
"I, too, sing America": Identity, Diversity, and Voice in United States Literature
(30 CREDITS)

What are the major US texts since 1850? And what problems are connected to them? Study a varied spectrum of US literature, looking at issues such as the relationship between American writing and history, American “difference” and differences within American society, nationalism and regionalism, and conflicts of race and gender.

LT206-5-SP
Narrative and Film
(15 CREDITS)

How do films tell their story? What narrative conventions do genre films utilise? How do filmmakers adapt original literature to create new stories? Explore meanings in different film narrative using classic, modernist and postmodern examples. Understand narrative conventions in genre films. Study screen adaptation, the cinematic remake and transmedia storytelling.

LT207-5-AU
World Cinema
(15 CREDITS)

What are the major developments in film outside of Hollywood? Examine different regions, nations, movements and trends in international cinema. Understand styles and themes shared by certain schools of filmmakers. Analyse how films represent national/regional histories, and how these factors shape their reception as national, transnational or “world” cinema.

LT210-5-AU
Love and Death in the Renaissance
(15 CREDITS)

A century of religious, philosophical and political turmoil, the Renaissance was also the age of the great flourishing of the English stage and English verse. In this module you will study Renaissance love poetry and learn about the sonnet, court literature, and the circulation of manuscripts. You will learn about the great writers of the canon, and some less familiar figures too, such as the female writers, who appropriated literary forms conventionally associated with men, and turned them to their own ends. Moving from the focus on “love”, to the darker theme of “death”, some of the most extraordinary literature of this time is engaged with the religious turmoil and culture of martyrdom associated with the Reformation. Finally, bringing these themes together, this module also explores Renaissance innovation in the theatre, and the revenge play, in which love, desire and death are intermingled and intertwined to horrifying effect.

LT212-5-SP
Children's Fiction and the Turn to Young Adult Adventure
(15 CREDITS)

This module introduces the history of children's adventure stories, and explores the emergence of the multi-novel "Young Adult" genre that dominates bookshelves and literary conventions today. The module begins with the 18th century morality tale, and moves through the Victorian period of classic Children's literature, to culminate in a study of Lewis and Tolkien as founders of the modern form. The module will explore how young readerships are constructed over time, and examine trends in adventure writing for young readers. The questions "what is an adventure?" And "what is special about young audiences?" will be addressed throughout the term. In addition to thinking about the emergence of young adult literature as a genre in its own right, this module will examine the construction of narrative and voice in each text, as a means of examining the process of world-building in literary fiction.

LT215-5-SP
The Romantics: Poetry, Prose, Imagination
(15 CREDITS)

Romantic writers valued feeling, freedom of expression and the power of the imagination. Writers we now consider establishment figures, such as William Wordsworth, John Keats and Samuel Taylor Coleridge rebelled against conventionality, both in their writing and their personal lives. Women writers pursued liberation through literature – on this module you will read works by Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Shelley, Jane Austen, and others. Your study of poetry, prose and drama produced around the turn of the 19th century will provide you with an understanding of a relatively brief, although turbulent and complex period in our literary history. Established and new critical approaches and theories will provide a framework for your enquiries.

LT218-5-AU
Black Lives Represented: Writing, Art, Politics and Society
(15 CREDITS)

The representation of black lives in writing, art, politics and society bears a legacy of erasure, suppression and denial, a practice sometimes referred to by critics as "whitewashing". This legacy, undoubtedly linked to the growth of modern European imperialism in the wake of Columbus's American encounters, can often obscure the history of black people and their cultural output in different periods. From the "whitening" of Ancient Egypt--whereby it was situated within a European Mediterranean world, as opposed to an African one--to quiescence about the presence of black people in Britain prior to the Second World War, black representation in world history often featured as a kind of absence prior to the 1960s. This module aims to examine representations of black lives and cultural output over a broad range of fields, including the visual arts, literature, history and politics, and in different historical periods. It investigates what it means to be black--generally understood as a social category or construct relating to Africans and their descendants, whether Afro-Caribbean, Afro-Latin, African American or Black British--in relation to critical discourses of ethnicity, race and postcolonialism.

LT250-5-SP
Dystopias
(15 CREDITS)

A utopia is an imagined social order in which human flourishing has either been perfected or realised to an exceptionally high degree. A dystopia, by contrast, is a radically dysfunctional society in which the lives of the inhabitants are significantly impaired, damaged, or otherwise undesirable. In this module, we will study nine landmarks from the history of dystopian fiction, beginning in the early twentieth century and ending in the early twenty-first. Topics and issues addressed on the module include, but are not limited to, authoritarianism, surveillance, censorship, consumerism, the culture industry, feminism, Afrofuturism, genetic engineering, cloning, artificial intelligence, and global warming.

LT262-5-SP
Introduction to Caribbean Literature
(15 CREDITS)

Columbus’ gateway to the Americas, the Caribbean has experienced a phenomenal mix of indigenous, African and European traditions, giving rise to an exceptionally vibrant and diversified culture. By focusing on twentieth and twenty-first century texts, you gain a deep understanding of the literatures and cultures of the Americas and of recent transatlantic exchanges, whilst reviewing some of the key texts and themes of postcolonial studies and Caribbean literature.

LT267-5-SP
Desire in the Age of Enlightenment: Eighteenth Century Literature
(15 CREDITS)

The Enlightenment has often been considered the age of reason, or a period in which thought overcomes earlier forms of superstition or mysticism and develops empirical, scientific modes of seeking out truth. Juxtaposed against the Dark Ages, the Enlightenment would shine a new, penetrating light over all domains of concern. While certainly a time of radical change and rigorous re-examination, this simplified picture obscures a more complicated reality. For in the effort to relegate all forms of unreason to the past, the period witnesses an intense compression of the appetites that generate something of a counter-enlightenment--something like reason's own shadow. This module focuses on how those aspects of human experience resistant to rationalization and economization and calculation emerge in and through a range of artworks in the period after the Restoration (1660) and up to and including first-generation Romanticism (1789-1800). It also puts an emphasis on works by a segment of the population not well represented in the texts typically associated with the Enlightenment: women. Thematically, we concentrate on how desire--visceral, unruly, conflicted--takes aesthetic form. We will analyse artworks in their historical context, which means against the backdrop of scientific, political, and philosophical works central to the Enlightenment.

LT269-5-SP
Climate Emergency: Narrating the Environment and Writing the Wild
(15 CREDITS)

This module offers an exploration of the extent of writing on the environment, on landscape and the natural world in a time of increasing awareness of a global climate emergency. A number of primary non-fiction and fiction texts will be selected for discussion in seminars. In addition there will be choice literatures of eco-critical writing and contemporary eco-political works such as the Peoples Manifesto for Wildlife and material by Extinction Rebellion. The course will extol the virtues of the outdoor classroom -- extending learning beyond the seminar walls to explore the nature of Wivenhoe Park and through a field trip. Students will be encouraged to extend their knowledge in multidisciplinary ways to enhance their ability to analyse and write literatures of the environment.

TH243-5-FY
Tragedy and Theatre Writing
(30 CREDITS)

How are Aristotle’s theories about tragedy still useful? How have they been modified or rejected by playwrights since? And can you write a short tragedy? Examine tragedy in theatre, from classic Greek tragedy to now. Understand how playwrights adapt tragic forms and structures to speak more powerfully to their audience.

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