BA English Literature


Come and join UEA's English Literature students as they discuss 'what makes literature live?', with a little help from T.S. Eliot and others...

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"UEA’s approach appealed to me because it was so modern.”

In their words

Anna Walker, BA English Literature

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Meet Luke Wright. A poet and a theatre writer who graduated from UEA with a BA English Literature. Hear about his experience at UEA and how the societies, extracurricular activities and course gave him the skills to pursue his dream career.

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Literature at UEA is vivid, contentious and alive: mixed up with passion, politics and play. You’ll gain a first-class grounding in literature from the Middle Ages to the present, while learning to respond to your own reading in inventive ways.

Whether handling 15th-century manuscripts in the Norwich archives or writing your own critical introduction to a novel published only last year, your apprenticeship as a literary critic blends the acquisition of high-level analytical skills and broad and deep knowledge with an attention to critical writing as a craft.

Norwich is the ideal place to learn the craft of the literary critic. World-renowned literature has been produced here from the 14th century, when Julian of Norwich became the first woman to write a book in English, right up to 21st-century fiction by UEA graduates like Ian McEwan and Emma Healey.


UEA is the place where literature lives. At UEA, you’ll be part of a unique and supportive community of critics, writers, and drama practitioners who are dedicated to bringing literature to life. You’ll be studying literature in a city with both a rich literary tradition and a vibrant contemporary writing scene.

We emphasize choice and flexibility in building your own unique pathway through English literature. You’ll have the chance to discover a wealth of writers from Chaucer to the present day – from medieval romance via Shakespeare, Milton, Austen, the Brontës, and James Joyce, to novelists and poets who are still writing now. You might explore diverse traditions of writing from across the globe, and you’ll tackle a heady mix of genres, which currently range from epic to children’s literature, crime writing to Latin American fiction, tragedy to biography. Your journey through literature is shaped by you and your interests – no two UEA English Literature degrees are the same.

All our BA English Literature modules are 100% coursework. This enables you to cultivate the craft of critical writing. You might find yourself honing the perfect essay or try expressing your ideas in new, experimental forms in one of our creative-critical modules. Or you might turn your skill with words towards modules on journalism or publishing, which give you a flavour of the forms of writing these careers require.

Whatever you study, you’ll work with our world-leading critics, who will help you to develop your own critical voice. UEA’s School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing is famous for innovation in teaching and for cutting-edge research – that’s why in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014), UEA was ranked joint tenth in the UK for the quality of its research in English Language and Literature (Times Higher REF 2014 Analysis). Your lecturers will be passionate about bringing their own expertise into the seminar room.

At UEA, your Literature degree is a rigorous, flexible and distinctive course, which enables you to become a first-rate reader of literature, and a confident writer about it. You’ll graduate as a passionate and informed advocate for the literature you love. 

Course Structure

Year 1

In your first year you’ll be exposed to a huge variety of literature through a series of largely compulsory modules. Our Reading Now and Slow Reading modules allow you to sharpen your skills in literary analysis in small group seminars. Reading Literature in History gives you a flavour of the myriad ways in which literature has been an active presence within the world, while Writing Across Borders will enable you to explore what happens to literary texts as they move between countries, cultures and languages. In Reading and Writing Criticism you’ll discover how literary critics have constructed arguments from the classical world to the present. You might choose to take Writing Texts, which offers unique insight into the writing process by inviting you to experiment with creative-critical writing. Or, if you wish, you might choose to step outside English and take a module from another humanities discipline, such as politics, philosophy or languages. Your first year culminates in a fun, collaborative conference, which invites you to try out all your new-found skills in research, presentation and teamwork to explore how reading continues to matter.

Year 2

After your first year, there are no compulsory modules. In your second year, you’ll choose from a range of modules which together cover the sweep of English literature – or which invite you to step outside England to explore mainland European literary traditions or writing in English from across the globe. You’ll also select from a separate range of modules designed to help you to develop your own sense of yourself as a writer. You can get a taste of the ways you might use your literary training after your degree in modules on publishing or journalism. You can continue to experiment with our cutting-edge creative-critical modules which fuse the writing of criticism with writing creatively. If you wish, you can try your hand at creative writing, or take a module from another humanities course – this is a chance to continue your exploration of the study of politics, philosophy or languages or try one of these fields out for the first time.

Year 3

In your third year, you’ll choose from a dazzling array of specialist modules related to the research expertise of our staff. Current modules cover topics including classical epic, feminist writing, banned books, Latin American fiction, medieval monsters, lyric, and children’s literature. This is a chance to deepen your knowledge of a period, genre or idea that you’ve encountered before, or to try out something new and expand your literary horizons even further. You might also decide to undertake a dissertation, working one-to-one with a tutor on a topic of your choice.

You’ll have a huge range of choice in what you study in your second and third years, but to ensure you gain a real understanding of the history of English literature you must take at least three modules in literature written in the 18th century or before. Here you might end up encountering the romances and fables of the Middle Ages, the women who broke with convention to write poetry in the 17th century, the early journalism of the 18th century, or the extraordinary plays of Shakespeare. There is so much to discover in these rich literary traditions.

Teaching and Learning

All our teaching enables you to learn by doing – whether that’s by pulling apart the language of a short poem in a small seminar or learning how to express yourself confidently through regular writing exercises. From the start of the degree, you get your hands on literary texts and get stuck into analysing them.

You will be taught in a combination of lectures and seminars. Lectures are given by our world-leading team of literary critics, who will help to frame your thoughts about the texts you’re reading, surprising you with new ideas and introducing you to relevant contexts. In seminars, you’ll develop your thoughts and ideas through discussion with your peers, under the guidance of your seminar leader.

As an English literature student at UEA, you are given the guidance and support to learn to work independently. Often that means you’ll be reading books – but with the guidance of our lecturers to help you get the most out of your reading. You will also explore the library and discover new online resources. All this wider reading will help inform your thinking and make you a better critic of literature. You will sometimes prepare group projects, working with your peers on seminar presentations. Or you might improve your own writing by sharing it in a seminar and with your tutors.

Your tutors’ guidance doesn’t stop when the seminar ends. Each member of staff at UEA dedicates specific hours each week to one-to-one meetings with students, when you can come and seek additional advice and feedback. You’ll also be assigned an adviser to support you through your time as an English literature student by providing guidance on your developing literary interests and skills and where those skills might take you in your career.


Our English Literature course has no exams – we believe that the best way to express your thoughts about literature is through carefully crafted pieces of writing which you have time to rethink and revise. That’s why all of your literature modules will be assessed through submitted coursework. Your final degree classification is made up of the marks you receive in your second and third years.

Coursework can take many forms. You’ll often find yourself writing a critical essay in response to questions a tutor has set or, as your degree progresses, you might invent your own projects with increasing independence. But you might find yourself pushing the boundaries of what you write, too, by submitting coursework in which you express your new critical ideas by writing creatively. Your coursework is supported by seminar discussion, peer feedback, and tutorials with your seminar leader.

Study abroad or Placement Year

You’ll have the option to apply to study abroad for one semester of your second year. Studying abroad is a wonderfully enriching life experience – you will develop confidence and adaptability, and will have the chance to deepen your understanding of English while learning about another culture. At UEA, you will also be surrounded by the many students we welcome from around the world to study with us

For further details, visit our Study Abroad section of our website.

After the course

On graduation you might go on to work in the arts, media, publishing, politics, charities and NGOs, teaching or the commercial sector. You’ll be equipped with sought-after skills of critical reading, independence, time management, team work, and many more. You’ll also be well placed to study for a postgraduate degree.

Our Careers Service is here to support you in launching your career by advising with CV writing, internships, and much more. Every year we run an event, Working with Words, which gives current students the chance to meet and hear from successful UEA alumni from across the creative industries.

UEA also has its own in-house student publishing project, Egg Box, along with many other exciting initiatives that give you opportunities to turn your love of literature into a foundation for your future career.

Career destinations

Examples of careers you could enter include:

  • Journalism
  • Publishing
  • Media
  • Marketing
  • Finance
  • Teaching

Course related costs

Please see Additional Course Fees for details of other course-related costs.

Course Modules 2020/1

Students must study the following modules for 100 credits:

Name Code Credits


This is the main introductory module to the study of literature. It aims to help new students to read historically, by offering a range of models of the relationship between literature and history, explored through the study of selected historical and literary moments. The module is taught by a weekly lecture, with an accompanying seminar.




In this module, you'll be introduced to the possibilities of critical writing. You'll encounter a range of critics, from antiquity to the present. At its heart, the module will invite you to ask three questions: what does it seem to mean to think and write 'critically'? How does the form in which criticism is written shape its meaning? And what can we learn about our own critical writing by thinking about all the different strange, innovative and challenging ways in which the critics we're encountering present their arguments? Through this module, you'll develop a sense of what it might mean to write and think as a literary critic.




This module seeks to build on and develop the work of the Autumn semester, in particular that of modules concerned with close reading. In small tutorial classes of two hours per week you will engage with a long text in a deep and sustained way across the semester, opening up a multi-layered and multi-faceted reading. The first half of the course will focus on the literary text itself, its forms and its stylistic innovations, alongside some short supplementary readings. As the module goes on, you will encounter the diverse ways in which others have read the text from different critical perspectives. You will reflect on, especially, the ways critics have brought the literary text into dialogue with theoretical texts to mutually illuminating effect, looking closely at some of the theoretical texts they are drawing on too. In the end, you too will bring the literary text into dialogue with some of the theoretical writing you encounter in the second half of the course. The real focus of this course is, of course, less the text you are reading than the very practice of reading itself.




Reading is at the heart of our experience of literature. It is central to the ways in which we think and write about literary texts, and to some of the claims made on their behalf. This module is concerned with what it is we do when we read literature, at university and elsewhere, and why. We will concentrate in particular on four elements: on the practice of what is commonly known as close reading, one of the building blocks of literary study; on some of the ways in which reading has been represented in literary texts themselves; on the kinds of significance, both moral and political, claimed on behalf of reading; and on reading as we do and think about it today, in a world ever more virtual and networked.




This module will study how literary texts move across borders of history, geography and culture and what happens to them when they do. It will focus on particular examples of textual travelling drawn from different historical periods and, in the process, raise critical questions about cultural exchange and the idea of literature as a form of translation and adaptation.



Students will select 0 - 20 credits from the following modules:

This range allows you to choose to further develop your literary skills and interests. Modules in this range are core, which means they have to be passed and are not eligible for compensation.

Name Code Credits


In this module theories of literature and experiments in writing will intersect. In weekly lectures and seminar discussions, and through the reading of a carefully curated dossier of essays, you'll explore important questions about writing and literature. What is the difference between writing and speaking? What is a literary text and how does it differ from non-literary texts? What is the relationship between the act of reading and the act of writing? How is a literary text influenced by other texts? You'll also become confident in carrying out your own textual experiments and trying out a range of creative rewriting exercises on existing texts. In this you might explore modes of adaptation and translation, try out different ways of writing to constraint, play literary-generative games such as cut-up technique, as well as undertake a variety of textual interventions and experiments. You'll be encouraged to hack existing literary texts and rewrite them to your own purpose. You'll take texts apart and put them back together differently. Through specially-designed writing exercises you will gain new insights into a variety of approaches to writing and literature. Your encounters with literary-theoretical texts will likewise cast new light on the writing process and the ways in which the text produced relates to textual theories. By the end of the module you'll have gained a keen understanding of how texts work. This will make you a better reader and writer. You'll also become confident in stepping back and thinking about your own writing critically.



Students will select 0 - 20 credits from the following modules:

This range allows you to choose from other Arts and Humanities subjects that complement your degree and tailor it to interests you would like to pursue in the second and third year.

Name Code Credits


On this module you will learn the central currents of American Literature, from after the American Civil War, through the turn of the century and into modernism and the early 20th century, finishing at the close of World War II. You will follow the - often fiercely contested - development of a national literature, tracing the way this multitude of voices differs from place to place, from decade to decade, and from writer to writer. Writers studied on this module in past years have included: Henry James, Mark Twain, Nella Larsen, Langston Hughes, Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Ernest Hemingway, John Steinbeck, T.S. Eliot and William Faulkner. You will be introduced to these vibrant voices through reading and discussing short stories, novels, poetry, non-fiction and critical work. You will attend lectures, and take part in follow-up discussion-based seminars. Each week you will consider the context of the texts you read, as well as working to analyse and explain how they work on the reader and in society at large. You will encounter debates about the meaning of freedom in life and in art, what it might mean to be modern (or to refuse that modernity), about the responsibilities of citizenship to other people and to the environment, and about what it might mean to write and be read in the modern United States of America. By the end of this module you will be familiar with a wide range of late 19th century and early 20th century American texts and writers. You will learn the major movements in American literature from the fin de siecle through to the Second World War, and will be able to talk about the issues surrounding the development of a national and literary culture. Through doing this, you will improve your ability to read and analyse literary texts, to describe how language works in history and on the reader, and to identify and present new and exciting patterns in what you read.




How has American culture been shaped by categories of race, gender, class and sexuality? How can we unpick and understand the complex experiences that shape American identity? This module will enable you to develop and expand the research methods, writing skills, and oral skills you'll have acquired in 'Reading Cultures I: American Icons'. You'll continue your exploration of the contemporary United States, you'll be introduced to the work of critical theorists, and you'll be encouraged to think about America's changing position in the world. Classes will further facilitate skills in reading, writing, analysis and independent thinking, through which you will gain the confidence and the tools necessary to be a self-supporting learner, giving you a strong academic foundation for the rest of your degree programme.




From salsa to samba, futbol to capoeira, telenovelas to Tex-Mex: Latin American popular cultures combine Indigenous, African and European elements in unique ways found nowhere else on earth. You will examine several Latin American popular cultural forms, and the historical, religious, social and political significance they have for Latin Americans.




Its aim is the mastery of the alphabet: the script, the sounds of the letters, and their combination into words. Also, it introduces basic Arabic phrases and vocabulary to help you have introductory conversations. You will develop essential speaking, listening, reading and writing skills as well as a solid understanding of the structure of the language in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA). Some aspects of the Arab world and culture(s) are covered.




Did you know you could speak Mandarin in some way already? Try these: coffee as cah-fay, sofa as sharfah, pizza as pee-sah. Yes! Chinese people say these words pretty much as you do! Do you want to get an insight into Chinese culture? Are you planning an adventurous trip in China to explore the diversity of life and communicate with the local people? Your ears will be exposed to pinyin and you will begin to master the deceptively simple Chinese alphabet. You will open your eyes and mind to acquire meanings by drawing the characters. You will build up your vocabulary incredibly quickly, and soon learn to initiate conversations and read simple texts. You will work with your peers during grammar classes and classroom-based oral seminars which cover introduction to pinyin (pronunciation) and the common tricky sounds, word order, sentences at a basic communicative level, the spelling rules of hanzi (Chinese characters), building up your vocabulary, and topic relevant cultural norms. At the end of the module, there is a brief introduction to the Chinese daily meals and sentences you need to order food from a restaurant. By the end of the module, you will be able to recognize and pronounce pinyin confidently. You will develop knowledge of basic sentences. You will be able to understand simple linguistic rules so that you can carry on learning in the future. You will be able to greet people fluently. NOTE: Please note that students speaking other varieties of Chinese (e.g. Cantonese) are not eligible for this module.




Bonjour, comment ca va? Do you want to understand what this means and how to say it? This module will help you to master basics of French language and communication. This module is perfect for you if you have never studied French before (or have very little experience of it). Throughout the semester, you'll develop reading, listening, speaking and writing skills at the A1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). This means that you will learn to communicate about yourself and your immediate environment in a set of concrete, everyday situations. You'll be taught in a very interactive and friendly environment, and will often work in pairs or small groups. Your two-hour seminar will focus on listening, reading and writing skills, while the oral hour will help you to develop your confidence in speaking. We'll tackle some grammatical notions in class, but always as a means for you to improve your communication skills. You'll also have opportunities to explore aspects of the cultures where French is spoken, thanks to the various documents we will use to develop your linguistic skills (songs, podcasts, leaflets. You'll be assessed by two course tests: the first will cover listening, reading, and writing skills and the second will cover your speaking skills. On successful completion of this module, you'll be able to understand and use familiar everyday expressions aimed at both the satisfaction of concrete needs, and those used to describe areas of most immediate relevance. You'll be able to introduce yourself and others, ask and answer questions about personal details, and interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly. Please note that students should not have a level of French that exceeds the level of this course. This module is probably not appropriate for you if you have a recent French GCSE at grade C or above, if you have studied French abroad, or if you have learnt French in an informal setting (such as in your family). If you have such experience, please contact the Module Organiser as soon as possible to complete a level test.




Have you ever wished you could order your mulled wine at the Christmas market in German? How would it feel be to be able to introduce yourself in German or survive a basic conversation in the language? Or do you simply want to understand what makes the Germans, the Austrians, or the Swiss tick? These questions highlight the central learning you will achieve within this module. Our beginners' course in German is perfect if you have very little or no prior knowledge of the language. You will gain the confidence to use German in basic conversations as you develop a first understanding of German sounds and essential grammar. You will build up a bank of key vocabulary to survive in real-life situations. You will also gain a greater awareness of German traditions and ways of thinking to help you make sense of a country that is deeply rooted in the heart of Europe. In a relaxed environment you will participate in classroom-based activities, working in pairs and groups to try out and be creative with new sounds, words and phrases. The fun of language learning will never be far away and promises to give you the confidence to make the first steps in German. As well as speaking and listening to each other you will discover the joy of understanding an authentic German text and to write an amazing first paragraph in German. A first course in German will enable you to add a vital skill to your CV. At this crucial political and cultural moment in time the study of the German language and culture will without doubt make you a more attractive graduate and informed global citizen, whatever your specialism or area of interest. Please note that you should not have a level of German that exceeds the level of this course. This module is designed for students with no prior or very limited knowledge of German.




Do you want to explore Japanese culture or travel to Japan? Would you like to enhance your career opportunities? This is a beginners' course in Japanese assuming little or no prior experience or knowledge of the language. In this module, you'll learn reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills. You'll gain the linguistic understanding of a number of real life situations, as well as the ability to communicate effectively in those situations. There will also be opportunities to explore aspects of the cultures where Japanese is spoken. Particular emphasis will be placed on your acquisition of a sound knowledge of grammar. Please note that this is a subsidiary language module. Very occasionally, subsidiary language modules may need to be cancelled if there are low levels of enrolment. Please note that if you are found to have a level of knowledge in a language that exceeds the level for which you have enrolled, you may be asked to withdraw from the module at the Teacher's discretion.




Do you want to learn a new language? Do you want to access the Spanish-speaking world? Are you about to travel through Spain or any Spanish-speaking country in Latin America? Then, it#s the right time to enrol to Beginners# Spanish I. This module will improve your academic education and will provide you with the confidence to advance towards intermediate and advanced levels. It sounds good, doesn't it? You will develop your reading, writing, listening and speaking skills and you will have the opportunity to receive personal feedback on all your efforts. You will take part in classroom-based activities, working in pairs and small groups exchanging ideas and supporting each other in the process of learning the language. You will also be able to focus on real life situations as well as the ability to communicate effectively in those situations. There will also be opportunities to explore aspects of the cultures where Spanish is currently the main language. By the end of this module, you will have the linguistic competence necessary to understand and use common, everyday expressions and simple sentences, to address immediate needs. If you have a recent Spanish GCSE grade C or below, or an international equivalent, then this module is appropriate for you.




In this module you'll explore the ways in which human beings have, from time immemorial, used narratives and poetry to create their models of the universe, and to think about issues relating to mankind's place within it. You'll focus on ancient texts from a variety of major civilisations over the last four millennia, many of them still treated as living sources of wisdom and insight, spiritual guidance and moral vision. It has become customary in modern philosophy to privilege rational discourse, in prose, as the acceptable way of doing philosophy, and to imagine that to be human is to be rational. But is it irrational to explore our world and discover the deeper truths through narrative? Is that even non-rational enquiry? Might it actually be one of the key ways in which philosophy can reach and engage every human being? And might that be why all civilisations have stories and poetry as their foundational texts, not philosophical arguments? In this module you'll acquire a basic knowledge of some key texts (including Homer, key parts of the King James Bible and the Quran) that any citizen of the world should know.




Global Politics 2 explores the most important controversies and debates in contemporary international politics. Because international politics is constantly changing, we review this module every year, altering the precise mix of topics to reflect the world that you see around you. All of our topics involve questions of power, ethics, transnational cooperation and security. Recently we have explored terrorism, nuclear weapons, our moral obligations to foreigners, as well as migration, the fate of the environment, and emerging powers in the international system.




This module challenges you to reflect on the nature of history: what it means for historians; what it means for the wider public and contemporary society; and what it has meant in the past. You'll explore the key approaches to the study of history and the conduct of historical research. You'll consider how historians have written history in the past and how they engage with it in the present; the relevance and challenges of sources and evidence; how historians present their interpretations, and the ways in which they debate amongst themselves. You'll come away with an understanding that history is rarely about the 'right' answer, but rather a series of ways of understanding and interpreting the past. You'll focus in particular on historical debate and how you can effectively analyse and interpret it. Through a mixture of both historical interpretation and historiography, you'll develop key study and transferable skills.




How would you converse with someone who is deaf? At work? In school? In an emergency? How can you avoid typical faux pas due to ignorance of a different culture? Can a 'signed'/'visual' language 'convey as adequately' as a 'spoken' language? These questions highlight the central learning achieved in this module. This is a course in British Sign Language assuming no prior, or minimal knowledge of the language. Throughout the course you will discover aspects central to the Deaf World and its Culture, and how to communicate through a unique 'visual' language, a language that uses your hands and body to communicate! Teaching and learning strategies involve signed conversation (from early on), role-play, and lots of games and exercises that make a truly 'fun and enjoyable' module to take. You will learn a little about the history of the Deaf and Sign Language itself, and its long battle to be recognised. You will discover how using your body and hands can be an exciting and meaningful way of communicating. You will acquire q wide range of easily usable vocabulary, a deeper look into various features that make the language unique, and very different to spoken languages. On successful completion of this module you will have developed knowledge and skills that will enable you to communicate with a Deaf person. You will be able to take your British Sign Language studies onto the next level, broadening your knowledge and developing further, the skill within this amazing 'Visual' language. Please note that very occasionally subsidiary language modules may be cancelled due to low enrolment. Students who are found to have a level of knowledge that exceeds the level for which they have enrolled may be asked to withdraw from the module, at the Teacher's discretion.




Trump's Tweets, Corbyn's "fans", and personalised campaign messages sent by algorithms#political communication has changed drastically in the last five years. Pundits and some scholars warn of serious dangers to democracy. What are the tricks of the trade in modern political communication and how different are they from those of the past? How does one now succeed to get across a message and gain support? Should we be worried about the implications for political discourse and decision-making? This module will enable you to critically assess the role of communication in national and international politics and help you understand the dynamics among political actors, media and citizens in opinion formation and decision-making. This is a professional practice module in which you will gain skills relevant to the conduct of political communications and to many other work environments, as well as experience working in a team on a task that requires critical thinking and collaborative strategizing. This module is ideal for anyone interested in working in politics, diplomacy, journalism, marketing, or for advocacy or activist civil society groups. Ideas about the power of communications and the ways that various political actors use that power are at the heart of this module. You'll examine how these actors use the media in political communications. Lectures and readings will cover media effects, how political communication has changed with changes in media technology, branding and celebrity in politics, and soft power with political communication at the international level, as well as the tools used by various political actors, such as political parties or civic movements. Lectures are interactive, using an audience response system and open discussion. Seminar activities include practical tasks as well as ones to enhance understanding of the readings. The first assessed work is a group project in which you will play the role of junior analysts in a communications consultancy and you will work together to assess the political communications of a real political actor, your "client", producing a report and presentation that includes recommendations for improvement. The second is an essay that gives you the chance to develop your ability to analyse and synthesise. By the end of this module you will be able to identify and describe the actors and their interests in a given political communications contexts, as well as formulate and articulate clear arguments about the relationships between political actors and the media in relation to power and agency. You will have gained experience in a simulated work scenario that will give you skills transferable across a number of professions as you will have delivered analysis and recommendations in a professional-style presentation and report. You will also be able evaluate political communications' role in an international context, something increasingly necessary in the ever more globalized world both for political and corporate actors.




What am I? What kind of world am I in? How can I know about it? How should I live my life? In this module, you'll grapple with fundamental philosophical questions that have great personal significance for each of us. You'll focus on perspectives from the history of modern philosophy (ca. 1650 to 1950). You'll get to debate the ideas of key thinkers, which might include Descartes, Locke, Hume, Kant, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, as well as other less well-known figures. This module will be suitable for you with or without prior experience of philosophy. It is a useful accompaniment to work in early modern history and English literature.




In this module, we study some of the most original thinkers of the twentieth century, in order to reflect in unconventional ways on the ideas of human association and community as well as evaluate the loss of autonomy produced by cultural invasion and the institutionalisation of values. The basic goal of Radical Philosophy is to present you with a constellation of styles of thinking and forms of criticism that will stimulate you to examine in a rigorous way several thought-provoking perspectives on the idea of social transformation.




What do we mean when we say an argument is well-reasoned? What makes an argument either watertight or unreliable? We can start to answer these questions by distinguishing between, on the one hand, the individual claims that occur in an argument and, on the other hand, the relationships between those claims (which is the argument's logical structure). During this module you'll study philosophical reasoning, looking in close detail at the role played by logical structure such that we have an argument which has not only a true conclusion, but one which is firmly supported. As a result, you'll arm yourself with indispensable tools for rigorous philosophical thought, for identifying problems in the arguments you encounter, and for defending your views effectively within and beyond academic philosophy. You'll study what we call 'validity' in particular, gaining techniques for identifying valid arguments. As you discover how to break down the components of an argument, you'll sharpen your skills in argument-analysis and deepen your understanding of some key logical concepts, central to philosophy. In addition you'll master specific methods for examining validity in abstraction from natural language contexts. You'll strengthen these skills via a combination of seminars, lectures, workshops, and independent study. We'll focus heavily on practice exercises. The study of logic and reasoning will make you a better philosopher, whatever your specialism or area of interest. It will enable you to judge your own arguments and those of others more easily and effectively, and help you to organise your thoughts and communicate your ideas more effectively.




This module conveys the rich complexity of twentieth-century Europe, encouraging you to look afresh at the period. In hindsight, the epithet 'age of extremes' best describes the contradictory characteristics of a century during which total war and genocide were accompanied by growing humanitarianism, state health care and the advance of human rights. Naturally, developments during the first decades of the twenty-first century have forced historians to reconsider and revise once-accepted narratives about European modernization. Just as the trend toward increasing integration, harmonization and homogenization seems questionable in light of the crisis of the European Union; Islamism and Islamophobia believe the idea that modernization resulted in secularization and tolerance. Similarly, the demonstrable power of international finance and supranational assemblies counters narratives of popular empowerment through the triumph of representative democracy. The lectures examine themes in their respective chronological contexts: the age of catastrophe; the age of the post-war 'economic miracle'; and the making of contemporary Europe. Rather than dwelling on familiar aspects of the century that you may have previously studied, the module will also expose you to the history of Europe after 1945, Central and Eastern Europe, and developments in the US and colonies that shaped the continent. Instead of focusing narrowly on high politics, international relations and warfare, the module also aims to allow you to re-examine the century through the study of the history of population movements, land uses, urban planning and attitudes toward the past.



Students must study the following modules for credits:

Name Code Credits

Students will select 80 - 100 credits from the following modules:

This range comprises of modules integral to literary study. Modules in this range are core, which means they have to be passed and are not eligible for compensation.

Name Code Credits


What is the state of the art of the novel at present? And what are some of the distinguishing preoccupations and characteristics of the contemporary novel? This module seeks to consider these questions with a view to developing an understanding of the condition of the novel today. The module focuses on fiction published in the UK and Ireland in the last ten years, with a particular focus on more inventive writing. We'll read a small set of contemporary novels, the content and form of each of which will exemplify some of the possibilities for fiction in the present day. We'll consider the relation between the contemporary novel and the contemporary moment - for example, our concerns regarding the environment, identity, nationhood, and history - and think also about what it might mean to be or to call oneself contemporary: to be together with one's own time. The list of authors chosen for the module changes regularly, as you would expect. Recently, it has included the likes of Ali Smith, Anne Enright, Zadie Smith and Mohsin Hamid. You'll consider a range of ways of conceiving and interpreting the contemporary novel, and discuss these ways with your peers. There is no consensus about what does or should constitute a canon of contemporary fiction, although there is a growing critical literature on the subject, some of which we'll read. It will be our job, in lectures and in seminars, to think carefully about what novels published in the last ten years offer the best argument for the continued viability of the novel itself as a contemporary art form.




This is a module which you will find helpful throughout your degree, informing and perhaps changing the way you read and analyse literature, film and other cultural forms. Across the twelve weeks, you'll not only engage with the rich, complex and provocative work of literary critics and theorists - including deconstructive, feminist, post-colonial and queer theorists - but also of some of the thinkers and writers who have influenced them: such as Marx, Freud and Saussure. You will therefore encounter some of the most important and exciting thinkers of the modern period, acquiring an understanding of developments in linguistics, economics, psychoanalysis and philosophy, and tracing the ways in which these overlap with, and inform, literary and cultural study.




The eighteenth century was a time of great literary experimentation in which many new genres emerged, including the periodical essay, the mock-epic, the ballad opera, and the novel. These genres took shape within a commercial revolution that transformed both what it meant to be an author and what it meant to be a reader. In this module you will see how writers such as Joseph Addison, Alexander Pope and John Gay created works that both participated in and criticized the culture of commerce. You will explore the fictions created by writers such as Daniel Defoe, Horace Walpole, and Elizabeth Inchbald, who developed very different versions of the novel. You will also examine how writers such as Samuel Johnson, Frances Burney, and Olaudah Equiano navigated the new possibilities for authorship that were opening up in the period. Ultimately you are invited to become an "eighteenth-centuryist" and to make imaginative connections between the exciting range of genres that emerged in this century and the culture that produced them.




Today, literature in English is produced in many countries across the world and English increasingly enjoys a status as a 'global' language. In this module you will explore how this situation came about by placing the development of English literary traditions both in the British Isles and elsewhere into the long historical context of the rise and fall of the British Empire. Beginning with canonical works by British writers from the eighteenth century through the nineteenth and into the twentieth centuries, you will then consider literary and political responses to the experience of empire and colonization by writers from areas such as South Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, Australasia, and the Americas. You will explore how 'English Literature' has been shaped on a global scale by global historical forces, and how different the history of the English literary tradition looks when placed alongside and in counterpoint to these 'other' writings in English. You will then discuss the writings of authors such as Daniel Defoe, Joseph Conrad, Chinua Achebe, Jean Rhys, Amitav Ghosh, Kate Grenville and J.M Coetzee amongst others. The module will introduce you to the theoretical and conceptual apparatus of postcolonial literary studies and to some of the key frameworks for understanding the formation of the modern world, such as race and racism, nations and nationalism, colonial discourse and postcolonial theory, and how gender and sexuality were pivotal in the formation of colonial and post-colonial identities.




LDC students going abroad under the ERASMUS exchange scheme for the Autumn semester enrol for this module. Further details of the ERASMUS scheme are available from the Study Abroad Office.




Students going abroad under the ERASMUS exchange scheme for the Spring semester enrol for this module. Further details on the ERASMUS scheme are available from the Study Abroad Office.




In this module, you'll examine examples of twentieth-century European writing (all read in translation). Rather than (merely) place writers in their national contexts, you'll deal with topics, issues and formal experiments that complicate, sometimes transcend, national boundaries. In fact you'll interrogate what 'European' might mean in relation to literature - where are the borders? Are continental Europeans fundamentally 'other'? And if so, how does this otherness manifest itself aesthetically, thematically, tonally and formally? You'll look at how writers from different countries frequently challenge the conventions of genre and the conventions of reading and interpreting. Among a range of important innovations (or continuities), you may explore varieties of 'European' modernism, postmodernism, the absurd, fantasy, noir, and other genres. You'll also ask how European writers have responded to the challenges, upheavals and catastrophes of the twentieth century and how they deal with the ethnic, religious and cultural diversity within Europe. You'll engage with these topics in weekly lectures, and you'll be assessed by means of an individually chosen project (supported by a formative proposal followed by individual and group tutorials).




A semester spent at a university abroad with the approval of the School. Students interested in European universities should see the Erasmus exchange modules. In all instances you must consult with Study Abroad Office.




This module provides an introduction to the study of medieval literature. You will explore Chaucer's poetry (through works such as 'The Clerk's Tale', 'The Merchant's Tale', 'The Nun's Priest's Tale'), the wonderful Morall Fabillis of Robert Henryson, the work of Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe, and a number of important Middle English Romances, including the superb 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight'. You will work in three inter-related ways: by exploring a range of important medieval literary genres (the lyric, allegorical narrative, romance, 'mystical writing', 'life writing', moral fable, dream vision); by considering important aspects of the medieval world (social, political, religious) and their textual representation; and by addressing the material circumstances in and by which medieval texts were written and read, published and circulated (in manuscripts and in the very earliest printed books). The aim, then, is really two-fold: to introduce you to the remarkable riches of medieval literature (one of the pay-offs of the relative linguistic difficulty of Middle English is that it forces us to attend slowly and carefully to the textual details of our material in a way I suspect we don't always find ourselves able to and in a way that the texts we will be reading wonderfully reward), and, at the same time, to allow you to try your hand as medievalists, exploring the distinctive possibilities and practices that come with working with this material.




The modernist movement transformed literature and the arts worldwide in the early part of the 20th century, peaking in the period between 1918 and 1939. Although the term modernism was rarely used by authors in this period, in the period after World War II it became the usual term to describe a group of writers, responding to one another, whose work is characterised by radical experiments with language and form, which aimed to do justice to a range of many subjects such as the mysteries of consciousness and the unconscious, gender, sexuality, and desire, violence and democracy, the primitive and the mechanical. We will be reading a range of authors, including such long-canonised figures as James Joyce, T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams, HD, Gertrude Stein, and Virginia Woolf, but expanding the modernist canon in the light of recent scholarship to other more recently revived authors such as Djuna Barnes, Mina Loy, Dorothy Richardson, and Jean Rhys. We will trace some of the origins of modernism in earlier literary movements such as Symbolism, Imagism, Aestheticism, and Impressionism, and explore its kinship with foreign literary movements such as Dada and Surrealism. Modernism invented modern methods of criticism and we will be placing a particular emphasis on the close reading of poetry and poetic prose. A study of modernism is essential for understanding all 20th century literature and this module is highly recommended for any students wishing to take any modules in 20th-century literature.




1780-1840 was the Age of Revolution and Romanticism, often regarded as a revolutionary style of writing. It was the age of the American and French Revolution and the Wars they entailed, the age of slavery and rebellion, of empire and conquest. You may think of Romantic writing as mainly nature poetry, primarily work by Blake, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley, Keats, and Byron. But the signs of a 'Romantic' sensibility can also be found in a much broader constituency of writing: the novel, letter writing, the essay, political and aesthetic theory, and social commentary. In this module you'll be introduced to some of the most exciting Romantic period writing, including poetry, fiction and non-fictional prose from the Age of Revolution. You'll also explore key period artistic and literary concepts such as the sublime, beautiful, picturesque, the Hellenic, and pastoral, and you'll analyse the many ways in which the writers of the period exploited concepts of landscape. You'll look at issues such as the Supernatural and Dreaming. Your understanding of Romantic writing will be enhanced by an analysis of aesthetics, politics, and of the work of women writers. During the course you'll explore poetry by Blake, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Keats, Shelley, as well as Jane Austen's novel Mansfield Park (1816) and Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein (1818; 1831). You may also consider writings by less familiar poets, such as John Clare, Charlotte Smith, Anna Laetitia Barbauld, Mary Robinson, as well as prose works by Edmund Burke, Thomas Paine and Mary Wollstonecraft and others. You'll look at how writing is gendered in the period and the implications of this for both male and female writers. You'll be taught through a mixture of one-hour weekly lectures and two-hour weekly seminars, as well as self-directed study. You'll gain experience in communicating your ideas in tutorials, as well as through written work and presentations. You'll be assessed through two formative pieces (a close reading and a project bibliography) and one summative piece on a project chosen by yourself in discussion with your seminar tutors.




This module introduces you to a huge variety of kinds of writing from one of Britain's most exciting and turbulent periods of cultural, political and intellectual transformation: the seventeenth century. The module works through lectures, which establish larger questions we might ask of the week's material, and seminars, in which we read passages of texts together closely. We begin in the early seventeenth century by exploring the ways English writing was transformed by its encounters with classical texts (giving you the opportunity to read classical authors such as Horace and Martial in translation), before turning to explore women writers' complicated relationship to early-modern literary culture. We examine the emergence of new forms of life-writing, especially those written by women, and explore the ways in which seventeenth-century travellers wrote about their encounters with the Middle East. In the module's latter section, we ask how literary forms were transformed by the extraordinary upheavals of the English civil war and the execution of the monarch. Authors we study include famous figures such as Ben Jonson, Andrew Marvell, and John Milton (including a look at his masterpiece, Paradise Lost), as well as many lesser-known writers, including women such as Lucy Hutchinson and Hester Pulter. To better understand the ways early-modern texts' circumstances of publication shape their meaning, we offer the opportunity to sign up for an (entirely optional) visit to the Norfolk Heritage Centre (in the centre of Norwich) to handle their remarkable collection of seventeenth-century books.



SHAKESPEARE (pre-1789)

The aim of this lecture-seminar module is to help you become a better reader of Shakespearean drama. Shakespeare is now so universally known and read that it is easy to forget that he wrote at a specific historical moment for specific audiences, actors and theatrical spaces. What happens to our understanding of Shakespeare's plays when we read them within the context of theatrical performance? This is what our module enables you to do -- and in doing so, it aims to give you fresh, new ways to interpret Shakespearean language and theatricality. Lectures equip you with methods and contexts for reading Shakespeare's plays; seminars give you the chance to put these into practice through close, attentive readings of his plays. Each week we study a different play in detail. The summative assessment asks you to put what you've been learning into practice by writing a critical analysis of more than one play using some of the module's methods.




This module aims to equip you with a knowledge of writing from across the Victorian period, in a variety of modes (fiction, poetry, science, journalism, criticism, nonsense). We will examine authors such as George Eliot, Tennyson, Dickens, Darwin, Charlotte Bronte, and the Brownings. You will thus develop an awareness of how different kinds of writing in the period draw on, influence, and contest with each other. Likewise, you will acquire a sense for the cultural, political and socio-economic contexts of 19th-century writing, and some of the material contexts in which that writing took place (serial publication, popular readership, periodical writing and public controversy).



Students will select 20 - 40 credits from the following modules:

Modules in this range are core, which means they have to be passed and are not eligible for compensation.

Name Code Credits


This module will provide you with the opportunity work within a creative/cultural/charity/ heritage/media or other appropriate organisation in order to apply the skills you are developing through your degree to the working world and to develop your knowledge of employment sectors within which you may wish to work in the future. The module emphasises industry experience, sector awareness and personal development through a structured reflective learning experience. Having sourced and secured your own placement (with support from Career Central), you work within your host organisation undertaking tasks that will help you to gain a better understanding of professional practices within your chosen sector. Taught sessions enable you to acquire knowledge of both the industries in which you are placed as well as focusing on personal and professional development germane to the sector. Your assessment tasks will provide you with an opportunity to critically reflect on the creative and cultural sector in which you have worked as well as providing opportunities to undertake presentations, gather evidence, and articulate your newly acquired skills and experiences.




Have you ever wondered what it means to write creatively? Or how you might articulate what Zadie Smith calls 'your way of being in the world'? Together we'll address these questions. You'll explore the work of some of the finest writers in the world, while also receiving clear guidance on how you might bring shape to the promptings of your imagination. This module will get you writing prose fiction and/or poetry. While there is no single, authorised way to write, there are things worth knowing about. You'll discover some of these things in class; others you'll pick up through being alert to what you have read and the way in which it functions. The most important thing, however, is to discover your own way of doing things. What drives you to capture a certain moment, or tell a certain story in a certain way? That's what we'll be aiming for. Along the way you'll develop an understanding of the craft of writing - the technical nuts and bolts - while acquiring the disciplines necessary to being a writer - observation, drafting, and submitting to deadlines. You'll be guided through a series of themes and concepts that go to the heart of creative writing, from voice and structure, to imagery and form. You'll generate material throughout the course, both through guided exercises and private study. Very often you'll be asked to write about 'what you know', drawing on notebooks, memory, family stories, your sensory impressions. In prose you will go on to look at such things as character, dialogue, point-of-view, 'showing' versus 'telling', plotting, etc. In poetry, there will be an exploration of the possibilities of pattern and form, sound, voice, imagery, and rhythm. By the end of the course you'll have developed a body of work to call your own and a sense of what it means and what it takes to write seriously.




Have you ever wondered what it means to write creatively? Or how you might articulate what Zadie Smith calls 'your way of being in the world'? Together we'll address these questions. You'll explore the work of some of the finest writers in the world, while also receiving clear guidance on how you might bring shape to the promptings of your imagination. This module will get you writing prose fiction and/or poetry. While there is no single, authorised way to write, there are things worth knowing about. You'll discover some of these things in class; others you'll pick up through being alert to what you have read and the way in which it functions. The most important thing, however, is to discover your own way of doing things. What drives you to capture a certain moment, or tell a certain story in a certain way? That's what we'll be aiming for. Along the way you'll develop an understanding of the craft of writing - the technical nuts and bolts - while acquiring the disciplines necessary to being a writer - observation, drafting, and submitting to deadlines. You'll be guided through a series of themes and concepts that go to the heart of creative writing, from voice and structure, to imagery and form. You'll generate material throughout the course, both through guided exercises and private study. Very often you'll be asked to write about 'what you know', drawing on notebooks, memory, family stories, your sensory impressions. In prose you will go on to look at such things as character, dialogue, point-of-view, 'showing' versus 'telling', plotting, etc. In poetry, there will be an exploration of the possibilities of pattern and form, sound, voice, imagery, and rhythm. By the end of the course you'll have developed a body of work to call your own and a sense of what it means and what it takes to write seriously.




Would you present your own poetry as if it were the translation of an ancient manuscript, or the writings of a medieval monk? Would you write a memoir documenting your addictions which mostly consisted of made-up people and events? What about writing an autobiography of your life as a former teenage prostitute (never having been a prostitute)? These crimes - and more - were perpetrated in the past: in 1760 James Macpherson 'translated' a text by the third century poet Ossian, the original of which never existed; later in the same decade Thomas Chatterton claimed to have 'discovered' the writings of the fifteenth-century monk, Thomas Rowley, but actually wrote the poems himself. More recently, too, with James Frey's A Million Little Pieces, and JT LeRoy's Sarah, we witness similar attempts to con or defraud unsuspecting readers. On this module, you will concentrate on four questions: the difference between the fake and the real; the skills a faker needs to produce an inauthentic version of the real thing; the ways a fake might reflect on the value of the original; and the process of discovering and detecting fakery. You will examine a series of test cases, from a range of historical periods, which will sharpen your sense of literary property, literary propriety, and literary ethics, and also provide you with a sense of the debates that shape and inform literature as a discipline and an institution. Formative assessment will include the opportunity to produce your own fake!




This module asks: -How does gender affect our perception of the world? -Why is it important to critique ideas of gender at this point in history? -How does the perceived gender of an author affect our interpretation of their work? -How does our own gender affect how we write and interpret fiction? -What about the intersection of gender and race? Gender and sexuality? -How does our position on the axis of oppression and privilege affect our personal experience and our ability to write from the perspective of those with intrinsically different experience? -How does our position on the axis of oppression and privilege affect our ideas of authenticity? -In a time of human social and political upheaval, is all art inherently political?




How do our literary choices inform our sense of self? What do our critical and theoretical interests say about our values and concerns? How do we make connections between our academic studies and the outside world? 'I Am' explores ideas concerned with the self, being, consciousness, and identity through engaging with a range of texts, from literature and literary criticism through to personal essays and online blogs. The aim is to help you, through the practice of reading and writing, reflect on your own values and intentions and to discover a language in which to articulate, with greater confidence, who you are. You should commit to participating in a process of uncovering your reality. This process will include classroom discussion, peer review, learning new approaches to writing and engaging in exploratory practical exercises. You'll also be expected to keep a journal in order to reflect on connections between your reading and yourself. 'I Am' is grounded in a commitment to help you consider your future beyond university. An increased level of self-awareness will undoubtedly support you as you approach the task of making decisions about jobs and careers in the future.




Have you ever wondered how books are chosen for publication, or do you want to set up a literary magazine? This module address conceptual as well as practical aspects of the publishing of texts, including discussions around readership the meaning of editorship and what constitutes an editorial policy. You will be taught how to set up, run and market your own publication (such as a magazine, a book, a fanzine), to consider the principles of good design, and will learn the rudiments of finance, scheduling and copyright law. You'll begin with an introduction to the concepts behind cover and page design, and an opportunity to put your new knowledge into practice by designing and writing copy for a book jacket. You go on to present and develop an idea for a short publication and, via discussion, class exercises and private research, learn to write or select, then edit, material for it. You will engage with the processes involved in its hypothetical production and learn to identify and address its readership. You'll also benefit from taught sessions on Adobe InDesign software in our Media Suite to enable you to design your publication at a simple, basic level. As you study you'll gain experience in communicating your ideas to a class and in tutorial, as well as through word and image in your formative work and portfolio.




Have you ever wondered how books are chosen for publication, or do you want to set up a literary magazine? This module address conceptual as well as practical aspects of the publishing of texts, including discussions around readership, the meaning of editorship and what constitutes an editorial policy. You will be taught how to set up, run and market your own publication (such as a magazine, a book, a fanzine), to consider the principles of good design, and will learn the rudiments of finance, scheduling and copyright law. You'll begin with an introduction to the concepts behind cover and page design, and an opportunity to put your new knowledge into practice by designing and writing copy for a book jacket. You go on to present and develop an idea for a short publication and, via discussion, class exercises and private research, learn to write or select, then edit, material for it. You will engage with the processes involved in its hypothetical production and learn to identify and address its readership. You'll also benefit from taught sessions on Adobe InDesign software in our Media Suite to enable you to design your publication at a simple, basic level. As you study you'll gain experience in communicating your ideas to a class and in tutorial, as well as through word and image in your formative work and portfolio.




Using the reading and study of poetry from the post-war context up to the present day, you'll consider some of the concerns of poetry including voice, form/structure and the 'poetry of witness'. You'll also look at contemporary visual art to consider correspondences between the arts. The poets studied will be drawn principally from an Anglo-American tradition and may include such writers as Frank O'Hara, Elizabeth Bishop, Yusef Komunyakaa, Carol Ann Duffy, Carolyn Forche, Patience Agbabi and Emily Berry among others. Formative work includes creating a mini-anthology of contemporary poetry and there will be the chance to discuss poems you've written or read. You'll be able to write creatively and/or critically for assessment.




In this module we will study some of the most important poetry and prose of the English Renaissance, including masterpieces by Christopher Marlowe, Sir Philip Sidney, and Edmund Spenser, as well as Shakespeare's early narrative poetry (not covered on the Shakespeare module). We will be studying these writers in a unique way. Behind this great outpouring of Elizabethan writing lay a vibrant literary culture which valued rhetoric, argument, elaborate and often playful self-presentation, and which insisted that good reading helped you to develop an individual style as a writer. In response to your reading of Renaissance literature, you will put the tenets of this culture into practice, building up over the course of the module a collection of short pieces of writing in prose (or sometimes, if you wish, poetry). When reading Sidney's ground breaking 'Defence of Poetry', for instance, you might draw on his rhetorical and argumentative techniques to write your own defence of any modern art form of your choice. Or when looking at the way Thomas Nashe plays with the form of his printed books you might have the opportunity to experiment with innovative ways of presenting your own writing to its readers. Revised versions of these short pieces of writing, built up across the module, constitute your summative assessment. This module allows you to think critically in genres other than conventional academic essays, and in doing so aims to foster connections between critical and creative writing. You will have the chance to develop more confidence and self-awareness as a writer and critic through studying some of the greatest English literature.




How do we convey the experience of one language and culture in the words of another? What is at stake intellectually, artistically, and politically in translation? This module will provide you with a descriptive vocabulary for the analysis of literary translation and an introduction to key theoretical explanations of what happens when we translate. You'll study translations from a range of historical periods, genres and languages. In the past, we have worked on authors such as Alexander Pushkin, Pablo Neruda, Adonis, Thomas Mann, and Knut Hamsun. Theories have included the classic controversies of St. Jerome and Vladimir Nabokov as well as debates about cultural equivalence and political issues such as the representation of the foreign. The module is taught by seminar where we engage with translation in a variety of ways, for example comparing different translations of a single text, translating the Bible from multiple languages into English, rewriting existing translations, and studying draft manuscript translations of a novel by Georges Perec. Assessment is by summative coursework for which you can either produce a comparative analysis of existing translations or an original translation with commentary. On successful completion of this module you'll be able to describe the linguistic and stylistic features of a variety of texts as well as critically assess and apply different theories of translation. A thorough reading knowledge of another language besides English is advisable, but not essential.




What is a short story? What do short story writers have to say? What about short story critics and theorists? Is the short story a narrative in miniature? Or is there more to a short story than simply being 'short'? And why are critics so concerned with whether the short story is alive or dead? These are the kind of questions this module will investigate by asking you to think as a short story reader, theorist, critic and writer. Reading will be drawn from short story writers - and writing about the short story - roughly spanning the 19th century to the present, and from a range of cultural contexts. Our interest will not be to establish a history of the short story, but instead to explore the range of thematic preoccupations, changing definitions, and critical debates surrounding the form. You will have the opportunity to respond to these questions in critical and/or creative forms of assessment. Writers studied might include Edgar Allan Poe, Katherine Mansfield, Julio Cortazar, Anton Chekov, Ali Smith and Ryunosuke Aqutagawa. This list is suggestive only.




What is a short story? What do short story writers have to say? What about short story critics and theorists? Is the short story a narrative in miniature? Or is there more to a short story than simply being 'short'? And why are critics so concerned with whether the short story is alive or dead? These are the kind of questions this module will investigate by asking you to think as a short story reader, theorist, critic and writer. Reading will be drawn from short story writers - and writing about the short story - roughly spanning the 19th century to the present, and from a range of cultural contexts. Our interest will not be to establish a history of the short story, but instead to explore the range of thematic preoccupations, changing definitions, and critical debates surrounding the form. You'll have the opportunity to respond to these questions in critical and/or creative forms of assessment. Writers studied might include Edgar Allan Poe, Katherine Mansfield, Julio Cortazar, Anton Chekov, Ali Smith and Ryunosuke Aqutagawa.




What makes a good history essay? What makes a good literary critical essay? How are they different? How do the disciplines of History and English Literature approach argument and evidence, narration and description? What are the generic, formal and stylistic expectations that govern academic writing in each of these disciplines? Some version of these questions will have occurred to any student attempting to meet the assessment criteria in a university degree. They are perhaps particularly pressing for students studying both literature and history, where somewhat different approaches are required by each discipline. This module brings historians, literary critics and creative writers into a multi-disciplinary conversation designed to explore the tensions as well as the continuities between history and literary studies. By asking faculty members from the two schools to investigate similar territory from contrasting perspectives, you will explore how very similar subjects and sources can be treated differently by different disciplines (and by different methodological orientations within those disciplines). Historians, literary critics and creative writers will give guest lectures that describe and analyse their research process and writing practice. There will also be some more theoretically driven weeks where the work of key philosophers and theorists of history and literature will be read and discussed. You are encouraged to reflect on your own approach to the writing of history and literary criticism and will have the opportunity to learn reflexive writing. The summative assessment asks you to analyse a source text using the resources of both disciplines, and then to write a reflexive essay positioning your own approach in relation to other historians and critics studied on the module.




What kinds of writing skills produce great journalism? This question is essential to creating powerful journalism and it's a central concern of this module. The Writing of Journalism enables you to develop a critical awareness of the skills and structures involved in creating effective journalism. You'll consider a range of journalistic forms and find out how best to nurture and develop your own writing. You'll have the opportunity to explore the ways in which journalistic writing works - its contexts, its demands, and its inventiveness. This will enable us to approach journalism as a discourse with its own conventions, practices, and ideologies. This module is concerned with journalism as a practice, and a genre. As such, it involves discussion, peer-workshops, and practical experience of reading and writing news and feature articles. In addition to writing your own journalism, you will examine journalistic writing and critical work concerning the craft, in order to probe and challenge your own ideas and assumptions about the practice and production of this writing form. Rather than see the practice of journalism and the critical study of journalism as distinct activities, this module aims to engage you as critical readers and writers whose work is informed by both contexts. In so doing, you'll gain a greater understanding of the demands and conventions of journalistic writing, develop and sharpen your own work, and gain the discursive flexibility which will allow you to navigate the writing of journalism today.




What kinds of writing skills produce great journalism? This question is essential to creating powerful journalism and it's a central concern of this module. The Writing of Journalism enables you to develop a critical awareness of the skills and structures involved in creating effective journalism. You'll consider a range of journalistic forms and find out how best to nurture and develop your own writing. You'll have the opportunity to explore the ways in which journalistic writing works - its contexts, its demands, and its inventiveness. This will enable us to approach journalism as a discourse with its own conventions, practices, and ideologies. This module is concerned with journalism as a practice, and a genre. As such, it involves discussion, peer-workshops, and practical experience of reading and writing news and feature articles. In addition to writing your own journalism, you will examine journalistic writing and critical work concerning the craft, in order to probe and challenge your own ideas and assumptions about the practice and production of this writing form. Rather than see the practice of journalism and the critical study of journalism as distinct activities, this module aims to engage you as critical readers and writers whose work is informed by both contexts. In so doing, you'll gain a greater understanding of the demands and conventions of journalistic writing, develop and sharpen your own work, and gain the discursive flexibility which will allow you to navigate the writing of journalism today.




We all know our own language, but a great deal of that knowledge is automatic: we're not aware of what we know. This module uses an assortment of concepts, exercises and texts to develop a more precise consciousness of the way language is used. It will exploit the resources of the Oxford English Dictionary to see how individual words grow and change their meanings. It will ask what 'standard English' is, and why some writers choose to deviate from it. It will explore the idea that language may be corrupted, with disastrous political effects. And it will look at some historical attempts to control words, including current debates about the language of prejudice and hatred. Literary texts will include George Orwell's 1984 and Russell Hoban's Riddley Walker. Critical materials will include extracts from M.M. Bakhtin, Victor Klemperer, Raymond Williams and Deborah Cameron. Written work will consist of short reports and analyses, some of them drawing on students' own experience of language in use.




In this module, you will explore the relationship between words and images in contemporary literature. You will cover what is meant by reading images, examine the varying but related stories that words and pictures tell, and analyse the narrative techniques employed in illustrated texts. As well as developing a critical vocabulary with which to discuss how these two media can be combined, you will survey shifts in the generic conventions of such literature over the last few decades so you develop an awareness of the various narrative techniques utilised by the medium. Rather than assuming comics are simplistic, debased or 'illiterary', you will address the medium as a site of exciting and innovative literary and artistic experimentation. You will also have the chance to carry out your own creative work in the genre.




It is a popular conception that writing about the natural world and its fragility is a particular fixation of the late twentieth and early twenty first century. However, concern about the natural world and man's place in his environment became a major preoccupation in the eighteenth century. Writing the Wild asks to what extent nature writers in our period may be read as being in dialogue with their eighteenth century predecessors. Texts will be predominately non-fiction and will give students the opportunity to study the less familiar writings of such authors as Mary Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft and Jane Austen alongside contemporary nature writing by Richard Mabey, Robert Macfarlane, Kathleen Jamie and Tim Dee. Topics will include: nostalgia, the impact of war on writing about the countryside, the relationship between nature, writing and the mind and the notion of 'landscape'. This module offers students the opportunity to write 'creatively' as well as 'critically'.



Students will select 0 - 20 credits from the following modules:

Option Range C allows you the option to tailor your study to your specific interests, if you choose. Modules in this range include special interest literature modules and selected humanities subjects that complement your study.

Name Code Credits


This module considers texts by Austen and the Brontes in relation to a wide variety of literary and historical contexts: feminisms, colonialism, impact of war, the social status of the woman writer, representations of governesses, madness, mad women and mad men, rakes, foreigners and strangers. We investigate the forms of communication which seem to be offered by and in the romance novel and the ways in which the lives of these authors have been told and read as romances. Opportunities will be available to work on film versions and students will also have, as part of the assessment, the opportunity to produce their own piece of creative writing in response to the primary texts.




How and why does comedy work as idea and performed practice? This module explores comedy as a complex genre across time and place, using a range of themes, texts, thinkers and practitioners to consider the theory, practice, politics and place of comedy in drama, encompassing comedy as social critique or challenge, resistance or reinforcement, comedy of ideas, language, confrontation, carnival and the grotesque, comic types and bodies, gender and identity politics, clowning, metatheatre and theatricality, as well as forms such as commedia dell'arte, and farce. We will also examine the idea and evolution of 'theatre of the absurd'. Texts will vary each year and you are encouraged to seek out performed comedy in a variety of contexts, especially live, to test out theories and practice, as well as the particular relationship of comic performance to its audiences. The main mode is seminar discussion complemented by opportunities to participate in and/or observe some practical work. Assessment can be wholly written or a combination of written and performed. This module focuses on dramatic texts but is open to all.




What was the feminist theatre movement and what does it mean for you now as a writer, theatre maker and/or scholar? Feminist Theatre allows you to explore key feminist theatre makers from the Suffrage movement to the present, focusing on radical companies and writers of the 1970s and 1980s. Combining seminars and practical workshops, you will investigate what feminist historiography is and how you can engage creatively with archives. The module invites you to draw on a lineage of feminist ideas and methods to consider and challenge the continued under representation of women in theatre (and beyond). Assessment will be part analytical and part creative or creative-critical work, with an option to create a performance. All welcome! No need to identify as a woman or feminist to take part.




'Russia is old; her literature is new. Russian history goes back to the ninth century; Russian literature, so far as it interests the world, begins in the nineteenth#. Russian literature is the voice of a giant, waking from a long sleep, and becoming articulate. # And what he has said has been well worth the thousand years of waiting.' What has nineteenth century Russian literature said that the world has waited so long to hear? This is a question you will begin to answer as you read some of the age's great authors, such as Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Chekhov. You'll gain insight into what makes this writing distinctive and an awareness of the political, social and cultural conditions that created it. You'll discover why it was so important to other European writers and learn about the intriguing literary relationship between Russia and the West. You'll start by familiarising yourself with some of the historical background, concentrating on the 'westernisation' of Russia, a process begun by Peter the Great and made visible in the construction of the city of St Petersburg. At the beginning of the module you'll be given some key themes and questions to think about; these will help you to focus your reading during the coming weeks. You'll learn through seminars and independent study and research. You'll be assessed on one essay, which can be developed from a class presentation. By the end of the module you'll have read some of the great nineteenth century Russian writers and gained an understanding of the political, historical and social background of their work. You'll have discovered why these novels had such a profound impact in Western Europe and how they were instrumental in the development of the Modernist movement in Britain. You'll have gained a wider literary perspective and reading in translation will have made you think in new ways about your own language too.




You will explore some of the exciting developments in verbal and visual culture of the Weimar Republic between the First and Second World Wars, e.g. experimental theatre, Weimar cinema, cabaret, visual arts, the Bauhaus, etc. Texts considered may include writings by Brecht, Thomas and Heinrich Mann, Joseph Roth and others as well as key films by e.g. Pabst (Threepenny Opera), Lang (Metropolis), von Sternberg (Blue Angel) and others. A particular focus is likely to be representations of gender on page, stage and screen. Active seminar participation is expected. A knowledge of German, while useful, is not a prerequisite; translations are available.




This module offers a series of different approaches to the question of how Literature and Philosophy can speak to each other as academic disciplines, demonstrating the breadth and diversity of the two fields, as well as acquainting students with the research in literary criticism and philosophy currently being pursued at UEA. As well as examining the ways in which literature can illuminate and trouble philosophical argument, it will explore literature and 'the literary' as a topic for philosophical analysis, and the kinds of thinking such a topic would demand. Setting literature and philosophy into dialogue in this way will engender a more capacious understanding of the particular philosophical issues, and literary techniques, under discussion. The course will allow students to develop an awareness of the limits and advantages of various modes of literary and philosophical expression, and to foster more sophisticated skills in both literary and philosophical criticism. The module will be made up of a lecture circus, with two weeks given to each lecturer on a particular topic related to their current research (there will be five in all, including a lecture from the module convener, plus two from Philosophy and two from Literature, Drama and Creative Writing). The seminars will discuss issues arising from these lectures, working with texts set by the lecturer.




How can theatre change the world? You'll attempt to find out by examining the use of theatre and performance by theatre artists and activists to challenge power and create the possibility of change. You'll look at political theatre in the USA, South America, South Africa, and Europe in the 20th century and beyond; week by week you will encounter plays, writers, performers, and theorists and build up your own toolkit of political theatre. You'll also create short plays and performance works, and take part in forum theatre, dance, stagings, and events which will enhance your political and theatrical understanding. You will be assessed through writing a short play, a sustained comparative essay, and an original performance work. Themes studied might include feminism, LGBTQ theatre, anti-racism, and Marxism. You will debate, create, and study and emerge having found your own voice as a political theatre-maker.




This module will explore the diversity and histories of literatures emerging from transatlantic crossings and exchange. Taught through a lecture circus format, it will draw on the research expertise of colleagues in both AMA and LDC, in order to demonstrate the breadth of the Transatlantic as both a geography and an imaginary. Materials will include Pilgrim narratives, literary responses to the slave crossings of the Middle Passage, writing of the Caribbean, the work of writers whose careers took them from America to Paris, or from London to New York, and transatlantic literary networks. Each lecture will be given by a different academic, based on their own areas of research, and QandA's with lecturers on how they conceive of the Transatlantic as a critical concept and constellation.




World War II brought the horror of war home to the British. War invaded the country in new ways: it reshaped Britain's landscapes, radically altered the social practices of everyday life, and shattered people's very sense of what it meant to live. As one writer remarked, the war "worked at a thinning of the membrane between the 'this' and the 'that'. War life was hallucinatory, and the struggle to write about the home-front invades the writing of the 1940s in strange and unpredictable ways. Many of us have personal family stories about the war but very few people studying literature today have read fiction from the period. In fact, this module is one of the only ones in the UK where you can study fiction from and about the period. To do this, we'll be asking five questions: what did 'war lives' actually look like? How did writers from the period represent life on the home front? How does literary criticism read these representations? How do contemporary writers re-imagine the period? And how can we, as critical and/or creative writers, use all these materials from and about the period to find creative and critical innovation in our own work as we read and write war lives. In this module we'll be studying four kinds of materials. We'll look at actual archival work from the period. We'll read fiction (short stories and novels) and non-fiction (essays and letters) by writers such as Elizabeth Bowen, A. L. Barker, Angus Wilson, Henry Green and Patrick Hamilton - you probably haven't heard of them, but that's because literature of the period is only recently re-emerging from critical neglect. We'll read this new critical work on the literature of the period. And we'll read fiction written in the past thirty years or so that is set in, or about, the British home front in WWII. This module will give you the chance to develop an understanding with an area of literature you probably have never encountered. But it will also give you an opportunity to consider the relationship between historical context and literary form or representation in a very concentrated, research specialist way. You'll get a chance to work an exciting range of academic materials: archives, letters, fiction, and criticism. And you'll get a chance to develop your critical understanding of how your own writing - whether creative or critical - can find innovative ways of representing your research.



Students will select 0 - 20 credits from the following modules:

Modules in this range include selected humanities subjects that complement your study.

Name Code Credits


Your module provides a broadly chronological view of American poetry from the start of the 20th century to the present day. It wonders about what the consequences might be if we consider seriously Emerson's claim (made in 1844), that America might be seen as a poem. Through detailed examination each week of groups of related poets, your module aims both to question what constitutes American poetics, and to examine how this conception has changed over the course of the 20th century. As well as tracing a trajectory in American poetry from modernist to postmodernist modes, one of its primary concerns is also to start exploring how ideas of what an American poetry might be are inflected differently in 'mainstream' and in more avant-garde (or 'experimental') poetries. Indeed, by explicitly thinking about these differences you will pay particular attention to the ways in which ideas of nationhood, of political dissent and protest, of poetic 'groupings' and canon-formation, are instrumental in determining what we choose to see as America's representative poetry. You will gain a wide knowledge of a range of different 20th-century American poetries, as well as a strong sense of how the political, cultural and literary 'tastes' of America across the century have delivered it the sorts of poetry it deserves.




On this module you will explore the relations between art and photography in the United States in the first half of the 20th century. The central debate in American modernism has concerned the role of the medium and considering photography in relation to the other visual arts permits a reassessment of this debate. Artists and photographers examined include Alfred Stieglitz, Georgia O'Keeffe, Marcel Duchamp, Diego Rivera and Walker Evans.




You will examine the relations between art and photography in the United States in the first half of the 20th century. The central debate in American modernism has concerned the role of the medium, and considering photography in relation to the other visual arts permits a reassessment of this debate. Artists and photographers examined include Alfred Stieglitz, Georgia O'Keeffe, Marcel Duchamp, Diego Rivera and Walker Evans.




The first book published in the New World was a hymn book. Music, sacred and profane, has been at the centre of American lives ever since. Distinctive American musical styles still dominate the globe, as they have done for decades. But how did American music develop into the genres that we recognise today? How did uniquely American sounds catch the ear of listeners all over the world? You will gain a thorough understanding of the development of American music. You will focus on a number of distinctive musical traditions - from minstrelsy to blues, jazz, and country; from rock and roll to hip hop - and consider the way that they have shaped popular music today. Throughout the course, you will encounter a rich variety of music and an extraordinary range of characters, from the most famous entertainers in modern culture, to the obscure, the forgotten and the neglected. Whilst exploring the development of American music, you will also examine the ways in which its growth tells a larger story about the history of America and its people. In particular, it will give you a different perspective on the issue of race in American life. Through seminar discussion, written coursework, and group presentations, you will develop your analytical and critical abilities - whether that means your ability to think about the significance of a song and its meaning for a particular historical moment, or the way that the shifting meaning of a genre of music can tell us many things about its wider social and cultural context.




Addressing America as a nation and the experience of being American, Walt Whitman writes in 'Song of Myself': 'Do I contradict myself? Very well, I contradict myself, I am large and contain multitudes.' This module explores Whitman's comments in a selection of 20th-century American writers, and considers the literary and historical contexts of their creative literary practices. You are also encouraged to reflect on your own creative writing. What can you learn from these American writers and how might their innovations enhance your own writing practices? You will encounter a broad range of American writing from Walt Whitman to Conceptual writing. You will focus on how and why American writers have addressed notions of national and individual identity through their creative practices. You will also learn about the formal innovations of American writers in order to understand the concept of 'voice' in terms of, for example, expression, representation, protest, and subjectivity. You will learn through seminars and creative writing workshops where you will develop your skills as a writer, reader and editor of your own and other's work. You will develop as a writer and enhance your understanding of American literature, as critical reader and as creative writer. You will adopt, adapt and appropriate the stylistic and contextual concerns of pioneering American writers covered and articulate the significance of these concerns for your own creative work.




Through this module, you will encounter the largest, most dynamic city in the wealthiest and most populous nation in eighteenth-century Europe. Against a backdrop of France's fraught politics between the age of Louis XIV and the Revolutionary-Napoleonic era, you will gain an intimate sense of Paris as a changing urban space that provided a stage for radical experimentation in everything from art and fashion through to high finance and luxury lifestyles. You will grasp how Paris during the enlightenment functioned at different levels, from the removal of garbage to enforcement of justice. This module will involve delving into a rich variety of textual and visual sources alongside extant material evidence from the city itself.




The Anglo-Saxon period spanned 600 years from the end of Roman Britain to the Norman Conquest. It was a period of turmoil, seeing waves of immigration, the clash of peoples and religions, and kingdoms jockeying for control. Out of this crucible, England emerged. This is the story of how it came to be. Using contemporary sources, you will learn to handle evidence and reconstruct the worldview of people who lived over a thousand years ago. Anglo-Saxon history teaches you to go a long way with little evidence; to use your imagination to fill in the gaps. Whether it's new to you or something you've studied before, you'll achieve a deeper and richer understanding of how the nation was formed. Via lectures, seminars and private study, you'll discover the Romans, Saxons and Vikings; the strange treasure they left behind; the cryptic and conflicting chronicles (learning to read between the lines), and debates we still haven't resolved today. Developing your powers of argumentation, you'll run into questions with no certain answer. Building with fragmentary evidence will boost your creativity, and you'll encounter ancient artefacts. (Trips have included West Stow Anglo-Saxon village and Norwich Castle Museum.) At the end of the module you'll command an overview of how England came into being. You'll also have built your ability to see other people's points of view, even if they lived a thousand years ago. This is a crucial ability whether in personal or professional relationships. Also learning to argue with evidence as fragmentary as the evidence we'll explore, will hone your problem-solving skills to an unusual degree.




Animation has long been one of the most popular and least scrutinised areas of popular media culture. This module seeks to introduce you to animation as a mode of production through examinations of different aesthetics and types of animation from stop motion through to cel and CGI-based examples. It then goes on to discuss some of the debates around animation in relation to case study texts, from animation's audiences to its economics. A range of approaches and methods will therefore be adopted within the module, including methods like political economics, cultural industries, star studies and animation studies itself. The module is taught by seminar and screening and is not a practice module.




Using a range of case studies from the Mediterranean World, this module introduces students to some of the most significant themes and debates in the archaeology of the Mediterranean and archaeology more generally. Case studies will be drawn from a range of time periods and will address 'the big themes' in archaeology, such as cultural transmission, cultural development, societal collapse, trade and exchange, conflict, migration, empire and expansion, the emergence of urban societies, climate and society and ritual and religion. Often more than one theme will be included in a case study and the aim will be to understand how they relate to each other. For example, how does conflict or climate change contribute to migration or societal collapse?




Positioned at the hub of trade routes which spanned out across the known world, the city of Venice was a major commercial and political power during the medieval, renaissance, and early modern periods. It also grew to be one of Europe's most important centres of artistic production, with Venetian painters, sculptors, glassmakers, and architects channelling their city's diverse multiculturalism into a vast range of influential artworks. You will examine the development of art and architecture in the city from its earliest foundations through to the present day, tracing the aesthetic and urban history of what its inhabitants came to call 'La Serenissima,' the most serene city on earth. In previous years this module has featured a study trip to Venice.




Art is a resource which can be used both positively and critically to affect the contemporary world around us. It may be exploited, most obviously for its economic value, but also for broader social or political gain. You will explore these different uses of art by addressing the factors that condition our contemporary reception of art works and visual culture. You will begin by examining some of the key methodologies for interpreting art's contemporary functions, including its capacity to create contemporary identities and world-views. You will then turn to focus on the museum and gallery as spaces for these contemporary issues to emerge, before considering the same ideas at work in more quotidian ways. And, finally, you will conclude with a reflection on your own position as art historians, anthropologists, and archaeologists working with art in the contemporary world.




The beginning of the twentieth century witnessed a period of immense instability and change with the emergence of the United States as an international actor in the West and the Japanese break from the Chinese sphere of influence in the East. This was underpinned by technological developments, the expansion of global empires, extreme economic dislocation and two global wars. You will examine the conduct and content of the foreign policies of the major powers from the 1890s, with the Sino-Japanese War and the Spanish-American War, to the Japanese occupation of Asia. This will include assessing the interplay of the political, military, economic, strategic and cultural forces that shaped the beginning of the twentieth century and which continue to resonate in the contemporary world.




The African American freedom struggle did not begin or end with the civil rights protests of the 1950s -1960s. Since the demise of slavery, black activists have been forcefully demanding racial equality. From 1865 to the present day, African Americans have not only asserted their rights as citizens, but have demanded an end to economic injustice, while questioning the actions of the U.S. government both at home and abroad. This module examines black political and cultural protest in the United States over the course of the 'long' civil rights movement. Covering the period from the first years of black freedom following the Civil War to the emergence of Black Lives Matter, you will learn about the breadth and diversity of African American activism. You will challenge popular narratives of the civil rights movement and uncover the radical impulses that have animated the freedom dreams of black America. You will cover how African Americans responded to disenfranchisement, racial violence and economic inequality. You will also learn about the lives of key figures in the black freedom struggle such as Booker T. Washington, Nannie Helen Burroughs, Marcus Garvey, Mary McLeod Bethune, Stokely Carmichael and Angela Davis. Ultimately, through the study of primary sources and secondary texts, you will grapple with the complexity of black political thought and develop a detailed understanding of how African Americans counteracted white supremacy. On successful completion of this module you will have a broad understanding of the major trends in African American political and cultural history from the nineteenth century to the present day. You will able be able to clearly articulate how African Americans have shaped our understanding of the American nation, democracy and the meaning of human rights. Finally, through the close study of a range of cultural and political texts including autobiographies, speeches, newspapers and film, you will develop key analytical skills that are vital to the interdisciplinary study of history and politics.




How do we know what is real and what is fake? Previous generations, we are told, could reliably turn to "the news"#but is that really true? From the very beginning, American news was always synonymous with low scandal, scurrilous rumour, and fakery. And yet, there is no doubt that there have been crucial moments when journalists and journalism have gone beyond merely reporting events, to shape the public imagination. "The news" has always manipulated as much as informed its audiences, and in this module you will learn about how this in turn has shaped American life. In learning about the history of journalism and its cultural impact in America in the wider global context, you will have the opportunity to gain an understanding of the art of journalism, both critically and in practice. You will engage with questions surrounding print, broadcast and digital media#looking back to the past, reflecting on the present, and looking forward into the future of journalism. You will consider the ways in which marginalised peoples have sought to assert their voices through news media, by seizing the means by which our public understanding of reality is produced. The work will involve critical readings, engagement with primary source materials, seminar discussions, presentations, and critical writing with creative practice. You will have the opportunity to refine your communication skills, and especially the art of writing in different modes for different audiences.



Black Freedom Struggles: Slavery, 1619-1865

Race is central to the history of the United States. The conversations about race in 21st century America have their origins in a system of slavery that developed from the early colonial period. This module excavates these roots and thereby enables you to look to current conversations and understand where these began. You will follow a chronological sequence on the module, allowing us to trace the course of racial slavery in North America from its inception in 1619 through to its abolition in 1865. You will consider the roots of racism in the colonial era that strengthened during the antebellum years and beyond and consider their relationship with racial slavery. You will engage with the developing historical scholarship of slavery in the United States, gaining a deeper understanding of contemporary (then and now) debates concerning race and racial identity. Employing a range of resources including written and visual primary sources, oral histories, cinematic depictions, and nineteenth century novels, will allow you to see the networks of power articulated though race and ideas of "otherness". You'll learn through a mixture of seminars and self-directed study, often working with artefacts or source materials in seminars to enable you to think collectively about their meanings. Assessment will be entirely through coursework. The study of slavery in the United States will make you a better historian, whatever your area of interest. Concepts of race and ideas of "otherness" are so central to the study of history in the 21st century that the techniques and strategies of analysis employed on this module will enable you to think about the arguments of others more effectively and also position yourself within those debates.




Writers who want to address the contemporary scene confront a dilemma: as soon as you try to capture it on the page, you've already fallen behind the present moment. You'll explore how contemporary American writers nonetheless respond to this challenge. You'll consider the issues they identify as pressing in American culture, as well as the literary strategies used to explore those issues. As you progress in the module, you'll acquire understanding of a number of important concepts associated with contemporary American fiction, such as postmodernism, metafiction, identity, globalisation, and memory. When you've completed the module, you'll be familiar with a number of literary and cultural debates relating to contemporary American culture, and have detailed knowledge of some of the most exciting writers working today. You'll be able to explain why it is difficult to define, and write about, the 'contemporary.' And in the course of your assessed work and seminar discussions, you will develop your communication, writing, and research skills.




You will examine how contemporary artists have explored the way in which contemporary galleries and museums function. Since the 1960s artists have adopted the museum as both subject and medium in their artworks. These seminars will examine how such projects impact on our idea of what galleries and museums are, how they operate, and what role they have in public life today. Throughout, key ideas regarding aesthetics, politics, memory, and audience participation will be approached by way of specific artworks and exhibitions. These sessions will be supplemented by workshops exploring art criticism, as well as a study trip to London.




You'll be provided with an understanding of media access, production, participation and use/consumption. Module content is organised around notions of space and place, thereby enabling engagement with issues including: globalisation/the global; national media and media systems; regional and local media; community and 'grassroots' media, domestic and 'personal' media. Over the course of the module, you'll develop an understanding of the range and reach of media and the multiplicity of factors determining how, when and where populations are enabled to access and participate in media activities. Parallel to the above will be an exploration, through selected case study examples, of media and cultural policy issues, spaces/places of media production as well as a critical engagement with questions of power in relation to these. The module also adopts a contemporary focus by incorporating debates about the role and potential of digital media and communications technologies in enabling new forms of media production, distribution and participation.




For better or worse, digital technologies are hyped at having revolutionised society. This module will provide you with an introduction to the ways in which the internet and other digital technologies are (and are not) affecting society from theoretical and empirical perspectives, and how society shapes technology. Topics covered include: the evolution of the internet; the "network society"; regulating new media; the radical internet and terrorism; social networking, blogs and interactivity; culture and identity in the digital age; and how the internet affects politics and the media.




This module will introduce you to key issues in documentary history, theory and practice. You will engage with definitional and generic debates; historical forms and founders; different modes of documentary; ethical issues; and social and political uses. We will draw upon a range of national and media contexts and give you the opportunity to engage with a range of theories, archival materials, documentary styles and ethical debates within your written and practical work. At the end of module you will produce a documentary shaped by the traditions and theories you have studied, employing a range of archive film and television footage sourced from the East Anglian Film Archive.




You'll explore the experiences and fortunes of the peoples of the western peninsula of Eurasia between the rule of the Emperor Constantine I in the 330s and the call to crusade in the 1090s. At the beginning of the period, the lands centred on the Mediterranean and much of its hinterland were situated within the Roman Empire. Yet, within three hundred years, this empire had disintegrated and been replaced by a number of successor states, ruled by competing dynasties. These states included Visigothic Hispania, Vandal Africa, and Merovingian Francia. Another#in fact, the longest lived of all the successor states#was the eastern empire centred on Constantinople, long known to historians as 'the Byzantine empire'. By the close of the 7th century, many of these states had themselves been conquered by Arabic and African warriors committed to the new religion of Islam and been incorporated in the Caliphate centred on the city of Damascus#an empire which easily rivalled the might, spread, and power of Rome before its own collapse and fission in circa 1000. What Islamic rulers could do, so too could Christian ones. In 800 the son of a Frankish usurper, Charlemagne, was crowned emperor of the West. The actions and ambitions of this emperor were as formative and as formidable in the history of 9th and 10th century Europe as those of Napoleon in the 18th and 19th. The heirs and successors of Charlemagne#whether Frankish, Ottonian, or Scandinavian#were long compelled to negotiate his legacy and memory. By the 11th century, even the Roman pontiffs, now advancing a new programme of reform and renewal, were looking to situate themselves in relation to his Salian successors. The summons to liberate Jerusalem and rescue the Greek empire in the east, carefully tailored to the aspirations of the new elites of Francia and Catalonia, was perhaps the most explosive strategy advanced by these Roman pontiffs. This module is thus broad in chronological scope, covering more than eight hundred years, and extensive in geographical range, taking us from the Atlantic to the Euphrates, from the Atlas Mountains to the North Sea. In the course of this journey we'll meet many warriors, saints, and rulers, both female and male.




This module is a cultural and intellectual history: politics, religion, wars, and social history will cross our path, but we will be primarily concerned with what ideas people had and how they thought about the world, the past, and the present. The legacy of Classical Antiquity hovers over this period; but so too does the impact of the discovery of the Americas, unpredictably disruptive to how Europeans conceived of knowledge, novelty, and authority. We will explore the new ways of reading and writing (humanism), practicing and thinking about the arts, and making sense of the past (history and antiquarianism) that distinguished the Renaissance, while also paying attention to the impact of the invention of movable type and the proliferation of writing through the printing press. We will also discuss the developments in music and theatre that lead to the creation of opera, and enjoy Monteverdi's sexy and subversive L'incoronazione di Poppea (1643), one of the early masterpieces of the art form. Returning to the clashes between authority and experience in medicine and between 'ancients' and 'moderns' in literary and artistic taste, we will conclude, perhaps counterintuitively, with the idea of the 'primitive' in the age of Enlightenment. The seminars for this module will provide us with an opportunity to analyse and discuss in depth an eclectic range of primary sources, including texts but also images. Thus this module offers a taste of some of the most important and influential (and often humorous) writers and thinkers of the European past - Machiavelli, Rabelais, Montaigne, and Winckelmann, among others.




How can we make sense of the vast and complex world we are plunged into at birth? What happens when we become alienated from the world and its everyday meaning? If there is no absolute meaning assigned to human life by divine authority, does life have any meaning at all? Are we absolutely free to make sense of the world in any way we choose? Does death present an ultimate limit to human existence and freedom? Existential philosophers have grappled with these questions and in the process developed new ways of thinking about art, science, politics, divinity and every aspect of human life. Friedrich Nietzsche is one of the key founders of existential philosophy and his work began an important tradition that influenced thinkers such as Martin Heidegger, Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. This module will focus either on the explosive work of Nietzsche himself or on the existential tradition he inspired, so you may also wish to take the complementary module at level 6, in your third year, in order to cover both aspects of the subject.




Film Genres introduces students to the range of theories and methods used to account for the prevalence of genres within filmmaking. We investigate historical changes in how film genres have been approached in order to consider how genres have been made use of by industry, critics and film audiences. Genre theories are explored through a range of case studies drawn from one or more of a range of popular American film genres including the Western, science-fiction, melodrama, romantic comedy, the road movie, the buddy movie, film noir, the gangster film, the war film and action/adventure film. In exploring concepts and case studies relating to film genres the module aims to demonstrate the richness of film genre and its continuing relevance as a mode of analysis.




This module explores aspects of film theory as it has developed over the last hundred years or so. It encompasses topics including responses to cinema by filmmaker theorists such as Sergei Eisenstein and influential formulations of and debates about realism and film aesthetics associated with writers and critics such as Andre Bazin, Siegfried Kracauer, Rudolf Arnheim and Bela Balazs. You'll study the impact of structuralism, theories of genre, narrative and models of film language; feminist film theory and its emphasis on psychoanalysis; theories of race and representation; cognitive theory; emerging eco-critical approaches; post-structuralist and post-modern film theory. You'll be taught by lecture, screening and seminar. You'll work with primary texts - both films and theoretical writings - and have the opportunity to explore in their written work the ways in which film theories can be applied to film texts.




You will be introduced to an eventful period of history during which France exercised a preponderant role over European affairs and culture. The module will provide you with the essential background knowledge of political events, revolutions and wars but it will also encourage you to explore deeper social and cultural trends. In the first weeks we will reconsider 'Old regime' France, drawing attention to its dynamism and cultural richness before turning to the crises that discredited Bourbon absolutism. In subsequent weeks we will focus on the Revolutionary-Napoleonic epoch: our endeavour here will be to explain why the Revolution was revolutionary in theory, violent in practice and dictatorial in consequence. We will then reflect on the Restoration. Using extracts from Hugo's 'Les Miserables' as our starting point, we will look at how rapid industrialization generated social tensions that successive ministries tried to diffuse through repression and reform. Next, we will look at the France of the Second Republic and Second Empire; our focus here will be Napoleon III's modernization initiatives and dramatic remodelling of Paris. Finally, we will approach the history of the Third Republic between 1870 and 1914 from three angles: its success in making the populace feel French; science, art and culture; and its nationalistic foreign policy, which contributed toward undermining the general European peace. The seminars for this module will provide us with an opportunity to analyse and discuss in depth an eclectic range of primary sources, including textual documents (in English translation) ranging from constitutions to period fictional writings, maps, advertisements, artwork, extant material and architectural evidence, and music.




You will explore one of the most turbulent and dynamic periods in English history: c.1400-1485. In addition to exploring the narrative of events as it unfolded chronologically you will also learn about topics such as: theories of medieval kingship, the relationship between church and state, the relationship between England and Continental Europe, medieval warfare, chivalry and knighthood, the relationship between national and local concerns, and the opportunities for people of all genders to participate in political struggle. You will have the opportunity to read a wide range of primary sources as well as considering key historiographical debates. Upon completion of the module, you should have a more nuanced understanding of the exercise of power in the 15th century and how the deeds and decisions of those in charge impacted the lives of people further down the social spectrum. You should also have honed your skills in primary source analysis and historiographical scrutiny.




This module examines a critical period in English History. We begin with the Conquest of England by the Normans and look at the ways in which as a consequence England was drawn into European affairs. The midpoint is the loss of those continental lands in 1204 and the Magna Carta crisis of 1215. We then explore the domination of Britain by the English kingdom and end with the start of England's next great European adventure, The Hundred Years War.




World War II and the immense sacrifices the Soviet people made in defeating Nazism left multiple long-lasting legacies that shaped the multi-ethnic Soviet and post-Soviet Russian state, society and economy. This module aims to give you a better understanding of the state of contemporary Russian politics, society and economy through detailed historical enquiry of Russia's path since 1945. It is divided into two main parts: in part one you will examine key periods of post-war Russian history in chronological order, and in the second part you will look more closely at key contemporary in their historical perspective. These will include the question what it meant to be Soviet and its legacy; geopolitical imperatives, which only recently led Putin to invade Crimea; identity politics and historical commemoration; the transition of the economy from a planned economy to a market economy; and the complex mutations and adaptations of power structures in Russia that gave birth to Putin's 'managed democracy'.




Providing a conceptual overview of feminist research approaches, this module examines contemporary gender and power relations. You will examine both the formal and informal power structures that shape the experience of gender. Bringing together the fields of media and sociology, politics and cultural studies, you will explore the relationship between feminist theory and activism.




You'll examine the role of media in constructing - and challenging - contemporary gender relations and understandings of a range of femininities and masculinities, providing a conceptual overview of feminist research methods You'll explore both theoretical and methodological issues and cover theoretical approaches from feminist media studies, cultural studies, gender studies and queer theory. You'll explore a range of media and visual cultures including television, magazines, sports media, music, digital media culture, etc.




What shapes our view of history and heritage? How do we balance academic approaches with the need to engage an audience? How do we assess the significance of historic buildings and sites? On this module you'll explore these questions by studying the ways in which history is presented in the public sphere, in museums and galleries, at heritage sites and historic buildings, in the media and online. Through lectures, seminars and field trips you'll gain an understanding of different current approaches to history and heritage, exploring themes such as the role of museums, the commemoration of historic events and the development of digital heritage.




Since the unification of the states of the Italian peninsula, the history of modern Italy has been the subject of intense historical debate. Modern Italy has often been cast as a 'weak' state and 'fragile' nation, riven by particularism and by competing secular and religious ideologies, 'economically backward', less successful than its national neighbours, and 'the least of the Great Powers'. More recent historiography has sought to challenge or modify these perceptions in a number of ways, and this module examines modern Italian history from unification to present day, in the light of these ongoing historiographical debates. a) Italian nationalism, the process of Italian unification and the attempts to create national unity after 1870; b) The relationship between socio-economic change and political development in Liberal Italy; c)The impact of the First World War on Italian society and politics; e)The nature of the Fascist regime and its impact on Italian society; f)The radicalisation of the regime, its racial policies and the quest for Empire; g)Italy's role in World War II, the reasons for the collapse of the Fascist regime, and the emergence of civil war. h) Italian history since 1945




The four elements you will study in this intermediate French module are: Listening Comprehension, Writing, Translation and Grammar. While the emphasis is on comprehension, the speaking and writing of French are also included. You should have pre A level experience (or equivalent) of French and wish to develop this to a standard comparable to A2 in the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). You should not have a level of French that already exceeds the level of this module and should not have already studied AS or A level French/Baccalaureate/Level B1 in the CEFR.




In this intermediate French module you will develop your knowledge to a standard comparable to A level/ Baccalaureate/B1 in the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). This is a continuation of Intermediate French I. There are four elements: Listening Comprehension, Translation, Writing, and Grammar. This module can be taken in any year but is not available if you already have French AS or A level/Baccalaureate/Level B1 in the CEFR. You should not have a level of French that already exceeds the level of this module.




Would you like to take your basic German skills to a higher level? Wouldn't it be tempting to be able to express a range of feelings in German? Or take part in simple discussions and manage to hold your own? Fancy presenting a cultural event in your country to a native German speaker? This module is perfect if you have already completed Beginners modules or have sufficient pre-A-level experience of German but not if you are already working at a higher level than this. You will become more competent and confident in conversation with others as you explore essential grammar and vocabulary at a higher level. You will learn how to express opinions and preferences in a more complex way and how to master the skill of agreeing and disagreeing. You will gain the confidence to present to a small audience and shine in the process of it. During this module you will develop your understanding of the German way of thinking through shining a light at cultural traditions and events. In a relaxed environment you will participate in classroom-based activities, working in groups to try out and be creative with new words and phrases. The fun of language learning will never be far away and promises to give you the confidence to hold your own in basic discussions and presentations. As well as speaking and listening to each other you will apply a range of strategies to help you produce and understand longer texts. A basic intermediate course in German will enable you to add a vital skill to your CV. At this crucial political and cultural moment in time the study of the German language and culture will without doubt make you a more attractive graduate and informed global citizen, whatever your specialism or area of interest.




Would you like to take your German to a higher level and start to become a more independent user? Wouldn't it be tempting to be able to describe the plot of a good film or book? Or take part in simple discussions and manage to hold your own? Fancy promoting a TV-series from to a native German speaker? This follow-on course is perfect if you have completed the Intermediate module or have basic A-level experience in German but not if you are already working at a higher level than this. You will become more independent in conversation with others as you continue to explore essential grammar and vocabulary at a higher level. You will learn how to talk about experiences, hopes and ambitions in a more complex way and how to master the skill of persuasion. During this module you will develop a deeper understanding of the German way of thinking through looking at current affairs and iconic German television programmes. In a relaxed environment you will participate in classroom-based activities, working in groups to try out and be creative with new words and grammar structures. The fun of language learning will never be far away and promises to give you the confidence to hold your own in discussions and presentations. As well as speaking and listening to each other you will apply a range of strategies to help you produce and understand longer texts. A sound intermediate course in German will enable you to add a vital and highly valued skill to your CV. At this crucial political and cultural moment in time the study of the German language and culture will without doubt make you a more attractive graduate and informed global citizen, whatever your specialism or area of interest.




When studying this module, you'll already have taken beginners' Spanish modules or be at GCSE level, but not exceeding this. You'll be introduced to aspects of the Spanish language, in a variety of cultural contexts. It will enable you to converse with native Spanish speakers, read and understand specific information in short texts starting at intermediate level. Through Spanish, you'll learn to present information and engage in discussions. Using popular cultural forms such as film and media, you'll develop your reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Upon successfully completion of this module, you will have achieved a higher-intermediate level of Spanish.




When studying this module, you'll already have taken beginners' Spanish modules or be at GCSE level, but not exceeding this. You'll be introduced to aspects of the Spanish language in a variety of cultural contexts. It will enable you to converse with native Spanish speakers, read and understand specific information in short texts starting at intermediate level. Through Spanish, you'll learn to present information and engage in discussions. Using popular cultural forms such as film and media, you'll develop your reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Upon successfully completion of this module, you will have achieved an advanced level of Spanish.




In just a few decades Japan emerged from its feudal and isolationist condition and became a thriving capitalist nation-state with imperialist ambitions on the world's stage. From the mid-nineteenth century onwards, the country re-invented itself, combining the strength of its traditions with Western models of government, economic management, social structure and culture. Samurai gave way to elite bureaucrats; a skilled industrial workforce gradually displaced the peasantry; education expanded with remarkable speed and new infrastructure transformed the physical landscape. New patterns of daily life, social tensions and cultural aspirations accompanied these changes. The aggressive expansionist policy and authoritarianism of the 1930s precipitated the country into a war with devastating consequences, only for Japan to resurrect itself as a global industrial power and stable democracy in the post-war era. This module examines this process of transformation from circa 1850, when Western powers pressured Japan into opening to international trade, to the oil shock of the 1970s that brought an end to Japan's high growth phase. You will pay attention to the intellectual and cultural trends that informed Japan's development, and investigate concepts such as revolution, national identity, civilizational discourse, late imperialism, and historical memory. You will also explore social and economic change as reflected in lived experience, for example in farms and villages at the turn of the century; on the home front during the Russo-Japanese War; in bustling cities during the Taisho era; in colonial outposts before and during the Pacific War; and in occupied Japan afterwards.




The history of philosophy, from ancient times to our own, is richly studded with exciting and innovative thinkers, whose ideas still spawn a vast volume of research and reflective criticism. These great minds are our partners in many fascinating slow-motion dialogues that extend over decades, centuries and even millennia. We converse with them about some of the most significant issues in the field. In this module you'll join in this discussion by taking part in seminars focused on reading and discussion of some more of the original texts under the guidance of a research expert in the field. Texts will be selected by the seminar leader and will not include precisely the same texts as are included elsewhere in the philosophy Honours programme. Rather we'll aim to focus on thinkers whose work is insufficiently addressed in the other modules. Examples of thinkers that will be most likely to appear in the seminars for this module include Plato, Aristotle, the Pre-Socratic Philosophers, Ancient Sceptics, Enlightenment thinkers such as David Hume, Immanuel Kant, Rene Descartes, George Berkeley, thinkers from early Analytic philosophy, early or late Wittgenstein, Simone Weil or Iris Murdoch. During this module you'll be taught in a seminar/reading group style, with each group meeting on a weekly basis for twelve weeks. One or more such seminar groups may meet, depending on student enrolments and staff availability, and each group will be reading a different text or texts, from a different period or school of thought. This is a free-standing module that can be taken by itself. However, by taking this module in year 2, and the complementary Level 6 module in year 3, you can create a two semester course, exploring a selection of historical thinkers and adding a fitting supplement to the topical modules that you'll be taking over these two years.




Do accents define us? Do we need to change how we speak depending on who we are speaking to? Is language sexist? These are key questions to consider when think about sociolinguistics, the study of language and society. After all, Language is a powerful thing, an aspect of human behaviour that both defines and reflects the cultural norms of different societies. Our aim is to provide an introduction to sociolinguistics and throughout the module you will discover a wealth of different approaches to analysing language in relations to many different social variables, such as class, gender or social distance. You'll gain a firm grounding in sociolinguistic frameworks, methods and concepts, and also learn how to communicate linguistic ideas, principles and theories by written, oral and visual means. You'll begin with an overview of the field of sociolinguistics and key social variables. You'll then delve deeper, uncovering core concepts such as dialectology, Code-switching, genderlects, language policy, multilingualism, and interpersonal dynamics. By looking at the different methods and types of evidence used by sociolinguists, you'll become proficient in the different ways of working in this fascinating subject. Learning will be through a mixture of seminars and self-directed study. Seminars will include practical opportunities to practice your skills in linguistic analysis. You'll be assessed though coursework (100%), but will present your research for your coursework during the module as part of the formative assessment. The module is open to anyone interested in learning more about sociolinguistics, and you do not need to be studying a language to take this module - just have an interest in language and how we use it. On successful completion of the module, you'll have the knowledge and skills to take your understanding of language and society, and how we communication and interpret this communication, and apply it to many different areas of study. You'll develop your research, writing and presentation skills. And you'll be able to communicate your ideas more effectively, putting your thinking to the test by sharing it with others.




What do we actually do when we engage in 'conversation'? How do we create meanings without actually saying what we mean? Why does how we say something matter more than what we say? In this module we will address these questions and explore how linguistic meaning, in any language, works on a number of levels so that speakers are able to communicate much more than what they say in their words. You'll consider the extent to which language expression is influenced by social, cultural and psychological factors and why communication problems may arise even when speakers think they are speaking 'the same language'. We'll discuss the ways in which relationships of power, solidarity and intimacy may be shaped by particular uses of language in everyday interactions and how humour or irony may be generated when speakers break conventional patterns of communication. By the end of this module you'll have a clear understanding of how verbal and non-verbal expressions combine to convey a variety of meanings in different contexts: professional as well as personal. You'll have learnt to appreciate how the way we talk is influenced by our need to be valued and respected but also why speech may be manipulative and undermining. Classes will include group discussions of examples collected by you each week so that you can immediately appreciate how concepts apply in practice. In your final assignment you'll build on this understanding and analyse a verbal interaction of your choice (such as a celebrity interview, a chat show dialogue or an e-mail exchange) to identify how meanings are exchanged in that specific context.




This module provides an introduction to the linguistic skills in Medieval Latin which enable students to read administrative documents such as charters, accounts, court rolls, etc. It is particularly suited for those who intend on proceeding to postgraduate study in aspects of the past, such as medieval history, which require a reading knowledge of Latin. This course is not intended for students who have already studied Latin at A-Level or equivalent.




How do notions of gender and sexuality shape culture, and how are in turn our understanding and experiences of gender and sexuality shaped by cultural production? How important are other times, places and identifications - associated with class, race, ethnicity - to these understandings and experiences? And to what extent can a film, an image, a testimony, or a place capture such complexity? Addressing these questions from an interdisciplinary approach, the aim of the module is to explore the ways in which gender and sexuality are constituted through a broad array of experiences, practices, and cultural products. The module focuses on issues raised in classical and contemporary research in history, politics, media, cultural studies and visual cultures such as: representation and cultural production; subjectivity; identity; identification; bodies and embodiment; performance and performativity; among others. Overall, by exploring theory in conjunction with queer cultural production that explores questions of power, identity, and desire across different racial, national, and cultural landscapes, the module aims to problematise how gender and sexuality are not stable identities or classifications but are instead processes involving normalisations, hierarchies and relations of domination that can be challenged, troubled and/or queered.




We live our lives surrounded by material objects. In many ways, our lives are dictated by the consumption of goods. How then, should we understand our relation to materiality? In this module, you'll learn about contemporary archaeological and anthropological perspectives in the study of material culture. Questions that come up include: why the Summer Solstice is celebrated at Stonehenge; how houses differ across cultures; why we give each other gifts and wrap them; and how clothing gives us identity? Studying human-object relations from a range of perspectives, this module equips you to understand the role of materiality in your life and to think in nuanced ways on our consumer society.




What role do media and communication play in processes of globalisation? How is an ever more global media creating cultural change? In this module you will explore the cultural implications of global media and culture by investigating audience practices and media representations. It begins by introducing the main theoretical approaches to mediated globalisation, before examining how these work in practice. Indicative topics include the power of global branding, global celebrity culture, global publics and local audiences, transnational cultures, and representations of migration.




In this module you will be invited to engage with some of the key issues that figure in Philosophy of Mind and in Philosophy of Language, and to identify the interconnections between the two. Some major thinkers in the field, both recent and from earlier periods of the Western canon of philosophy, will be studied, and chosen set texts may be selected for close attention as relevant. Topics might include the mind-body problem, the nature of mind and its relation to the brain, issues connected with meaning and understanding, how (if at all) language governs, limits or facilitates thought, and the relation between language and the things about which we use it to talk. By taking this module in your second year you will explore a selection of these topics. A further selection of these topics is available in the complementary Level 6 Mind and Language module, which you can take in your third year.




We will introduce you to German history in the twentieth century, which was characterised by various radical regime changes and territorial alterations. Topics include German world policy and nationalism in the late imperial period; imperialism and expansionism during the First World War; the challenges of modernity in the Weimar Republic; the rise of Hitler and the formation of the Nazi empire in Europe; the post-war division of Germany and the legacy of the Third Reich; the nature of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) dictatorship and the problem of West German terrorism; as well as the fall of the Berlin Wall and reunification. Special attention will be given to questions of nationalism and national identity, issues of history and memory, and Germany's role in Europe and the world. On completion of this module you will have developed a solid understanding of one of the most dramatic periods of German history when the country oscillated between the two extremes of war and repression, on the one hand, and the return to peace and democracy, on the other.




This module deals with the rivalries of the Great Powers from the end of the Napoleonic Wars to the onset of the Cold War and its end with the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. We shall be examining topics such as the Vienna system; the Crimean War; Italian and German unification, the origins of the First and Second World Wars and the Cold War period.




Philosophy has much to say about the arts, and much to learn from them. In this module you will have a chance to explore some aspects of this relationship. Some issues that arise fall into what we would call aesthetics and the philosophy of art: we can ask about the value of art, aesthetic experience and judgement, artistic creativity, interpretation and representation, and we can investigate the views of many past thinkers on these matters. On the other hand, we can also use art to illuminate philosophy, and for this purpose we have chosen to focus primarily on cinema (while "literature and philosophy" investigates similar questions in connection with literature"). This module will focus on one or other of these two aspects of the encounter with beauty and the arts, but you may also wish to take the complementary module at level 6, in your third year, in order to cover both aspects of the subject.




Political violence, individual or collective, is easily condemned as an irrational and barbaric phenomenon, with little relevance for understanding political developments and social change. A lot is down to LeBon's famous nineteenth century accounts of the crowd as 'a primitive being' so destructive 'that the interests of the individual, even the interest of self-preservation, will not dominate them' (LeBon, 1995). The taboo of violence persists despite attempts of social and political theorists to engage with the issue and understand different forms and contexts, from riots, to religious violence and terrorism. The aim of the module is to break this generalized taboo by tracing the role (explicit or implicit) of political violence in political theory and its function in processes of socio-political transformations and change. Critical engagement with contemporary theoretical and empirical debates around the issue and the examination of mass and new media representations of political violence will enable students to develop a sophisticated understanding of the origins, logics, perceptions and outcomes of political violence and conflict.




For many people, popular music provides the soundtrack to their lives. It is intimately bound up with their sense of themselves, their attitudes and values, their friendships and social lives, their dreams and fantasies. But what can we learn about the power and place of popular music by studying it from an academic perspective? Throughout this module you will discover the range of approaches brought to popular music's sounds, images, meanings, audiences and production through the perspectives of media studies, cultural studies and sociology. In examining songs and videos, fans, industry and performance, you'll be encouraged to communicate your ideas in seminars and written work, engaging with key concepts and theories which will give you the tools to carry out your own research on popular music. We'll begin with a consideration of the 'popular' of pop, before critically engaging with historical perspectives on popular music, tracing this through to the development of a fully-fledged 'popular music studies'. Along the way, you'll uncover approaches to analysing popular music's texts, their production and the ways in which audiences and fans relate to them in the formation and expression of identities. You'll also be encouraged to reflect on popular music's relationship with other media (such as television, music writing and the internet), its role in everyday life, questions of representation, politics and power, and the contemporary relevance of terms such as 'scene', 'subculture' and 'genre'. Having considered the study of popular music in this way, you will put your knowledge into practice by developing and conducting your own research project into an aspect of popular music audiences and/or culture of your choice.




This module introduces students to key perspectives in 19th and 20th century social and political theory. Central to this module is an interest in the relationship between economic, social and cultural structures and individual agency and identity. Areas explored include the following: social conflict and consensus; conceptions of power and domination; Marxism and neo-Marxism; critical theory; structuralism; post-structuralism; ideology and discourse; postmodernity; the self and consumer society.




What if I told you that the West was no longer the power centre of the world's economy? Could Pax Sinica provincialize the UK as political economic power settles over Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta? What would Adam Smith, Karl Marx and Friedrich List have to say about global transformations underway in the global political economy? And, as Susan Strange famously put it: cui bono: Who benefits from all these transformations? Multinational corporations, nation states, financial sector, exporting economies, citizens? You'll investigate the accumulation of wealth, movement of capital, centres of power, flows of globalisation, patterns of trade, and the ubiquity of finance in a world being transformed by innovation where emerging powers challenge the status quo of North Atlantic powerhouses.




This module introduces you to the history and theory of propaganda, and its role in society. You'll consider what constitutes and defines propaganda. Focusing on the 20th century, we examine propaganda in a range of political settings, both totalitarian and democratic, in the local context of the relationships of power and communications. The module is structured chronologically, starting with the development of propaganda during World War I and finishing with a consideration of propaganda in the 21st century.




In this module you will be introduced to the key theoretical frameworks and approaches within the tradition of reception studies. It will offer you a critical exploration of the main debates and studies that have shaped the field, exploring both historical and contemporary contexts of media reception. In particular, you will consider the transcultural circulation of media, and the issues that arise when film, television and other media transfer between cultures with significantly different values and modes of reception. You will also be encouraged to critically evaluate existing reception studies, being equipped with the tools necessary to undertake your own small-scale reception study.




Religion is a phenomenon that is hard to define, and yet clearly integral to the entire history of human existence and across many cultures. Traditional philosophy of religion as practised in the modern Western philosophical tradition tends to focus on Christian belief and classical theism, yet there are also strong traditions of philosophy in other cultures with other religious traditions, such as the Islamic and Jewish thinkers who were at least as important as the Christian ones in the history of Medieval thought, and philosophy in Classical India and China has links with other non-Christian traditions such as Buddhism and Hindu thought.




Fourteenth and fifteenth-century Italy was shaped by the growth of urban centres and the development of new political, social, and sacred institutions. New patrons and uses for artworks prompted a wealth of artistic activity that responded to and also forged contemporary values, beliefs and identities. Bankers, merchants, mercenaries, and religious institutions exploited the power of art and architecture to promote their professional interests, ambitions, and families. But was the Renaissance all that it seemed? We will reconsider some of the most famous (and infamous) artists and objects from renaissance Italy, questioning traditional assumptions about the nature and function of art during this period. Each week you will explore a selection of buildings, paintings, and sculpture alongside renaissance literature and modern theory, building a new and richer picture of this critical cultural moment.




Political systems around the world are facing profound challenges and transformations. Established democracies in Europe and North America have seen the rise of populism, as marked by election of Donald Trump in the USA, the Brexit referendum in the UK or Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil. Democracy has also been in retreat in many states which democratised or partly democratised after the cold war such as Russia and Poland. At the same time, autocratic regimes in the Middle East and North Africa have come under pressure, with movements such as the Arab Spring signalling aspirations amongst many people for a more democratic system of governance. This module provides you with a critical understanding of how political systems vary around the world and the pressures facing them. It begins by focusing on the drivers of democratisation. It then proceeds to consider how political institutions such as the executive, legislature and the degree of decentralisation vary - and the effects that this has. Finally, we consider new trends in citizen's voting behaviour at the ballot box and pressure groups campaigning for change. You'll gain a critical awareness of current debates in comparative politics and develop key skills including critical evaluation, analytical investigation, written presentation, and oral communication.




We will explore the dramatic century of Stuart rule in England. This 'century of revolution' included the union of the English and Scottish crowns, the dramatic upheaval of the civil wars, and the continued political instability that led to the birth of political parties and the Glorious Revolution. While exploring these political themes we will also consider developments such as: the birth of modern news culture, crowd politics, civil society and coffee shops, the origins of empire, state formation, and the emergence of England as 'a nation of shop keepers' and Europe's great 'constitutional monarchy'.




This module analyses the emergence, development and end of the Cold War. In doing so it examines political, ideological and legal aspects of conflict between and within states, issues of sovereignty, nuclear strategy and arms control, as well as peacekeeping and non-violent resistance. Alongside political developments, themes such as everyday life, culture, sport and the existence of alternatives during the Cold War era will also be considered.




You'll examine the development of the English countryside during the Middle Ages. You'll discuss the nature of rural settlement, high status buildings and landscapes and 'semi-natural' environments.




Between the sixteenth and the early nineteenth centuries, the English crossed the oceans and claimed territory on every continent other than Antarctica. This module surveys the creation and growth of British Empire, examining its origins and its impact on an array of peoples. In the context of studying how the empire spread and functioned, we will consider the varied experiences of Africans, Native Americans, Aboriginal Australians, Protestant refugees from the continent of Europe, the peoples of India, the Irish, and British settlers across the globe. The complex, intimate, and often violent interactions of these groups led to ideological battles pitting loyalism against republicanism, for example, and imperial "civilization" against an array of indigenous cultural revivals. At first glance these struggles may seem to place the British against the subject peoples of their empire, but on closer examination it becomes apparent that they fractured nearly every population within the imperial domains. The creative energy of the British Empire stemmed in large part from collaborations between British groups and individuals and segments of their purported imperial subjects in building, reforming, or in some cases seeking to destroy the structures of imperialism




Is there really 'no business like show business'? This module will develop your understanding of how silent-era, classical and post-classical Hollywood has developed as an industry, balancing the twin demands of creativity and commerce. Our aim is to encourage you to analyse how Hollywood works as an industry, the kind of films it produces, and the ways in which they are consumed by domestic and global audiences. You will engage with a variety of Hollywood films and be introduced to a range of theories and approaches for analysing how they are produced and consumed.




Your main objective in this module will be to develop your critical skills as they pertain to thinking, reading, writing and looking. To enable this, the module will fall into two main sections. In the first section, you'll focus on one particular methodology - object biographies - used in archaeology, anthropology, museum studies and art history. You'll examine this methodology in detail, breaking it down into its component sections. You'll then consider its strengths and its weaknesses, as we subject it to a thorough critical evaluation. In the second half of the module, you will study a range of theories and methodologies used in the study of material culture. In this part of the module, you will focus more broadly on what critical thinking is, both in general and within each of the four disciplines taught in the Department of Art History and World Art Studies. You'll be taught through a combination of two weekly lectures and one discussion seminar. The lectures will offer you an introduction to the relevant topic, and will end with an opportunity to discuss/debate the issues raised. During the discussion seminars, you'll consider key issues raised in preceding lectures and the weekly class readings which accompany them.




How do the media shape how we see ourselves? Or indeed how others see us? In a world of social media, self-branding and the increasing importance of mediated forms of identity, on this module you will explore critical ways of thinking about the relationship between culture, media and the self. Drawing on a range of theoretical approaches in the field of media and cultural studies, this module asks you to use research methods from autoethnography to content analysis to explore both their own identities and the way in which identities more broadly are formulated through contemporary media culture. Through discussing the representation of identity in media content, as well as issues of media production, regulation and consumption, you will critically reflect upon the relationship between media culture and social power and consider how social and technological changes impact on the ways in which identity is experienced in everyday life. On successful completion of this module, you should be able, at threshold level, to critically reflect upon the ways in which media texts construct social identity and should be able to discuss the relationship between media and identity with awareness for social, institutional and technological factors that shape both media production and consumption. Assessment is by group presentation and independent research project.




We will look at the modern history of the Middle East, primarily concerning the political history of the region as well as relations between Middle Eastern countries and Western powers. Our aim is to encourage you to think critically about historical processes of state formation, the legacy of colonialism/imperialism, the role of culture and identity, and the significance of natural resources and economic factors.




On this module you'll study the development of the English landscape from early prehistoric times to the late Anglo Saxon period. You'll learn to identify and interpret key landscape features from the Neolithic, Bronze and Iron Ages before moving on to study Roman and Anglo Saxon landscapes. Lectures, seminars and field trips will provide you with an introduction to the approaches and sources used by landscape historians and landscape archaeologists. You'll develop your understanding of landscape history through the study of key sites such as Stonehenge, Hadrian's Wall and Sutton Hoo. The chronological approach of the module will provide you with an understanding of long term landscape change, telling the story of the English landscape from prehistory to the eve of the Norman Conquest.




You will examine Britain's expansion and decline as a great power, from the end of the Napoleonic Wars to the mid-twentieth century. During this module, you will consider the foundations of British power, the emergence of rivals, Britain's relationship with the European powers and the USA, and the impact of global war. You will also investigate the reasons for Britain's changing fortunes, as it moved from guarding the balance of power to managing decline.




This module explores some of the key ways in which television has been theorised, conceptualised and debated. You are offered insight into how the discipline of Television Studies has developed, as well as how television itself has developed - in terms of social roles, political functions and aesthetic form. The medium will be explored as a textual entity, a social activity (i.e. the focus on audiences and viewing), and a political agent (ideology and power). Part of our intention is to focus on how the specificities of television have been understood.




The Tudors are England's most famous royal dynasty. This module seeks to move beyond the traditional stories of Henry's turbulent marriages and Elizabeth's stunning victory over the Spanish Armada. You'll gain a better understanding of the change and turmoil the Tudor century caused, not just to the monarchs themselves but to the lives of their subjects, the everyday people of England. Beyond establishing a strong chronological knowledge of the 16th century and its religious upheavals, the module will consider issues of gender; the changing construction of the social order; the importance and developing role of local elites; problems caused by poverty and dearth; and the position of England within Britain itself and within Europe.




The Great War transformed domestic expectations and ushered in an age of Mass Democracy and economic hardship. After 1945 the welfare state and full employment saw rising affluence, accompanied by the emergence of youth cultures, a sexual revolution and new forms of radicalism and identity politics. The economic crisis of the 1970s sped-up deindustrialisation whilst the neoliberalism of Thatcher and her successors deepened inequalities and stoked nationalist sentiment. We explore the social, political and economic history of these tumultuous years.




In this module you will examine in depth the works of selected thinkers who are seminal to the Western tradition of political thought, and have shaped the ways in which we think about politics even today, including Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Mill and Machiavelli. You will also compare their work thematically, with a focus on themes such as the natural law and social contract traditions, and other schools of thought which have been influenced by these traditions. The module will be based on the study and interpretation of key primary texts and will enable you to develop skills of textual analysis and critique. It will also provide some of the historical background necessary to study more contemporary political theory at third year undergraduate level, as well as building substantially on some of the political theories encountered on Social and Political Theory at first year level. The module is taught by a combination of weekly lectures and seminars, supported by private study of your own, and you will be assessed by coursework, usually a combination of an essay and a portfolio which reflects on your reading and seminar performance throughout the semester.




We will explore female involvement in politics, from the Duchess of Devonshire's infamous activities in the 1784 Westminster election until 1919, when Nancy Astor became the first woman to take her seat in the House of Commons. We will examine topics including the early feminists, aristocratic female politicians, radical politics and the suffragettes, and will investigate the changes and continuities with female engagement with the political process from the eighteenth century through to the twentieth century.




We will explore female involvement in politics, from the Duchess of Devonshire's infamous activities in the 1784 Westminster election until 1919, when Nancy Astor became the first woman to take her seat in the House of Commons. We will examine topics including the early feminists, aristocratic female politicians, radical politics and the suffragettes, and will investigate the changes and continuities with female engagement with the political process from the eighteenth century through to the twentieth century.




This module examines the issue of gender in European history, between 1500 and 1750. Using a variety of written and visual sources, and including a comparative element, we focus on the following themes: definitions of femininity and masculinity; marriage, family and life cycles; queens and queenship; honour and sexual identities; charity and welfare; women and work; material culture; women in the new world; education and learning, and early feminists.




Writing the American Screenplay: Hollywood and Beyond For much of the twentieth century, the screenplay was synonymous with Hollywood, the Studio System, and "The Movies"; films as brash and bold as booming American power, written by screenwriting giants, such as Preston Sturges, Herman J. Mankiewicz, Billy Wilder, Anita Loos and Paddy Chayfsky. But much of what we love about more recent American film-making has been the work of writers outside the mainstream: John Cassavetes, Joan Micklin Silver, Charlie Kaufman, Spike Lee, Nora Ephron, Quentin Tarantino, and the like. Throughout, American screenwriting has produced work as dynamic and expansive as the nation itself. In this module you will move through the high points of American scriptwriting, using scripts, texts, and creative pastiche to develop an understanding of the form. Your work may be assessed through a mix of creative and critical work, writing exercises and a complete short script. In broadly the first half of the semester you will use pastiche and other techniques to develop basic screenwriting skills. The remainder of the term will be devoted to developing and workshopping an original script. You will be introduced to the basic dramaturgy of cinematic storytelling, screenwriting form and format, and skills in pitching and story development. This module will therefore help you develop your creative capacity, your communication skills, and will help broaden your commercial awareness. Students who achieve a mark of 68%+ either in this module or Adaptation and Transmedia Storytelling are eligible to enrol on Creative Writing: Scriptwriting in the School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing at Level 6.



Students will select 120 credits from the following modules:

Modules in this range are core, which means they have to be passed and are not eligible for compensation.

Name Code Credits


Is all creative writing really a form of re-writing? And can creative writing itself be a form of literary criticism? From Virgil's imperialist taming of Homer, to Helen Fielding's homage to Jane Austen by way of Bridget Jones, writers have always engaged their literary predecessors in ways that claim new imaginative and critical space. In this creative-critical module you will explore the many modes in which homage, parody, borrowing, repositioning, intervention and creative (mis)reading may be practised and developed. You will examine exciting examples, and write some of your own. You will discover what literary adaptations, adoptions and updates reveal about important moments and movements in literary history. You will explore how re-writing may also be a rogue and subversive form of reading; one that functions both as critique of canonical literature, and a means of generating fresh directions in your own creative writing. Please note this is not a technical course in film/screen adaptation.




Where do debates in environmentalism, cultural geography and literary criticism meet? What does contemporary literature have to tell us about our relationship with space, place, landscape, nature, rurality, ecology, and even a 'sense of planet'? On this module you will encounter a range of post-war and contemporary forms, from poetry, short stories, the novel, and literary non-fiction to visual art, the radio essay and film. Each will offer fresh and surprising ways of thinking about a range of different contemporary environments and about our place in a changing world. We will consider in what ways literary genres and traditions have helped to create and produce our understanding of geography in the past and how recent literary works have reworked some of these genres and traditions to mark contemporary changes. We will consider, for example, how authors since the environmental crisis have engaged with/inherited/reworked early modern chorography, the Romantic travelogue, the naturalist's journal, and the rural essay. To what new ends are these forms put in an uncertain and unstable modern world? Among others, the course will explore work by Alice Oswald, Rana Dasgupta, Tim Robinson, Kathleen Jamie, Patrick Keiller, J.G. Ballard, and Robert Macfarlane. It will also include trips to investigate the nature writing holdings at UEA's British Archive for Contemporary Writing. Assessment will give you the opportunity to, initially, create your own critical or creative radio essay/podcast (formative) and, later, develop a deeper knowledge of one of the week's themes, building your own critical (or creative non-fiction) project around it (5,000 word summative). While there are no pre-requisites, this module complements and develops themes explored on level 5 'Writing the Wild' and level 6 'Urban Visions: The City in Literature and Visual Culture'.




Charles Dickens has been described, and cherished, as one of the great chroniclers of the panorama of mid-Victorian society. At the same time, much modern criticism has rightly emphasised what a strange and innovative writer he is, less a documentary social realist than an early practitioner of what might now be called 'magical realism'. You will examine works from across Dickens's writing career, in a variety of different modes - fiction, journalism, essays, and public speaking - reading them not only in the context of Dickens's times, but also in the context of how other writers in those times dealt with comparable questions, and as part of a larger investigation of art and its relations to the world. As a result, you will be able to develop your interests in the relationships between social reality and its literary representations, in a module which combines in-depth study of Dickens with a broader engagement with theories of realism.



CHAUCER (pre-1789)

This module explores the rich and complex writings of Geoffrey Chaucer which we read in relation to their social and cultural contexts (literary, political, theological and philosophical). The module is structured in three parts: after an introduction via a selection of Chaucer's shorter poems and one of his dream visions (the "Prologue" to 'The Legend of Good Women'), we spend four weeks concentrating on 'Troilus and Criseyde' (in my opinion Chaucer's very greatest work) and then another four on the riches of the 'Canterbury Tales'. We approach Chaucer's writing in a number of complementary ways. We attend to the brilliance of Chaucer's poetry formally by considering his use of literary and generic convention; we approach his writing comparatively by looking at Chaucer's engagement with classical (Ovid, Boethius, the traditional stories of Troy) and older French and Italian writing (Dante and Boccaccio); we consider the ways in which Chaucer's writing records and responds to the historical circumstances of late-fourteenth-century England (particularly in the royal court and within London); and we look at the manner in which Chaucer's works were written and read ('published' and circulated) within a medieval manuscript culture and at the implications this has for an understanding of his work. For we might propose that the aim of this module is essentially twofold: to explore together some superlative Chaucerian poetry and, at the same time, to allow you to develop further as medievalists and Chaucerians, encountering the distinctive challenges and possibilities that come with working with this material.




This module offers you the chance to learn about children's literature and its development. It starts with the history of children's literature, looking at its use as a pedagogical tool, moving through Aesop's fables, fairy tales, Victorian and Edwardian literature, and examining authors that might include A.A Milne, Dr. Seuss, Sherman Alexie, and Melvin Burgess, amongst others. The course looks at issues of genre and content as well as at historical context. Theoretical readings on children's literature are also closely engaged with. By studying the development of children's literature, this module also analyses the development of the concept of childhood in Western society. This module is creative and critical and students have a chance to write for children in it.




In this module you will examine emergent voices and trends in recent theatre, film and television (mainly British but with some American or European contributions). Topics covered include the (questioned) demise of explicitly political drama and the appearance of previously silenced voices (e.g. gay and lesbian themes, feminist playwrights and writing ethnicity, physical theatre practitioners). In this module you will also examine recent works related to representations of (for example) religious controversy, sexual identity, politics and the social impact of scientific discovery.




Who hath not loiter'd in a green church-yard, And let his spirit, like a demon-mole, Work through the clayey soil and gravel hard, To see scull, coffin'd bones, and funeral stole; Pitying each form that hungry Death hath marr'd, And filling it once more with human soul? (John Keats, 'Isabella; or, the Pot of Basil (1817) 'Dark Romanticism' is a literary subgenre of 'Romanticism', reflecting a fascination with the irrational, the demonic and the grotesque. Intimately related to Gothicism, it has haunted the Romantic movement ever since its beginnings in the eighteenth century. Romanticism's celebration of unity, creativity, and sublimity has always been menaced by a dark and contrary fascination; with melancholia, insanity, nightmare, criminality and death; with ghosts, monsters and vampires; and with the grotesque and the irrational. The term 'Dark Romanticism' was coined by Mario Praz in his classic study, The Romantic Agony (1933) to discuss European Romanticism's obsessive concern with duality, desire, agony, suicide, morbidity and decadence in the decades following the French Revolution. Numerous recent scholars have since discussed Romantic writing's preoccupation with the psychologically unusual and aberrant from a variety of perspectives including the literary, historical, philosophical and, more recently, a medical point of view. In this module, we will explore this compelling but dangerous interrelation between Romanticism and the Gothic at work in a range of 'agonies' preoccupying our writers: addiction, depression, insanity, cannibalism, monstrosity, homosexuality, the femme fatale, the double, the demonic lover, the vampire, and the Romantic pre-occupation with Lucifer himself. Our module will focus on writers such as J. W. Goethe, S. T. Coleridge, Lord Byron, John Keats, Thomas De Quincey, James Hogg, and Percy and Mary Shelley, as well as Matthew Lewis, Charlotte Dacre and Dr John William Polidori, author of that most influential story 'The Vampyre' (1819). We will read key Romantic period texts including Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther, Byron's Don Juan, Keats's 'Isabella or the Pot of Basil', Coleridge's 'Christabel', James Hogg's Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner; Thomas De Quincey's Confessions of an English Opium Eater, and Percy Shelley's drama, The Cenci, as well as lesser known but influential works. You will be encouraged to deliver group presentations on these key texts and subjects, developing your own interests and ideas and working towards the longer research essay by which the module will be assessed.




On this module, you will encounter different historical ideas and theories of the literary archive, and consider its potential purposes, ethics and politics. We will discuss recent critical notions of literary archives alongside early modern letters, commonplace books, notebooks and marginalia. We will also consider literary representations of archives in novels such as A.S. Byatt's Possession, as well as the published letters and notebooks of writers like Samuel Beckett, Agatha Christie and V. S. Naipal. Your thinking about the literary archive will then be extended through practical archival experience and research. This will include work with a range of unpublished archival materials, including letters, faxes, objects, manuscripts, postcards, marginalia and more, perhaps including the physical, material archives of writers such as Doris Lessing, and digital archives of writers such as Naomi Alderman and Hanif Kureishi. In this way, the module will create opportunities for you to undertake and practice your own archival research, culminating in a final project. Overall, the module will ask you to consider: the ethics of working with public/private documents; the role of gender and ethnicity; the purposes and politics of 'recovery research'; the place of archival materials in/beyond biographical and historical readings of literature.




You will explore the relationship between the study of literature and the study of dramatic performance both creatively and theoretically. Its practical aspect consists of an adaptation for the stage of a literary text, which you will freely chose and test by workshop performance, and its theoretical aspect consists of attempts to define the narrative modes of the epic, the lyric and the dramatic, with the dramatic further dividing into tragedy and comedy. These two aspects of the course converge in considerations of how you have drawn on these narrative modes in your own adaptations, and how great writers throughout the centuries have created works which stand on thresholds between them e.g. theatrical novelists or lyrical dramatists. One question which underlies all critical engagement with the subject of genre is whether generic awareness should be understood as an historical encumbrance which stands in the way of representing or expressing personal experience, or whether it is a necessary and enabling resource for increasing the receivers' pleasure or extending their philosophical horizons. Critics have stood on either side of the debate.




We are witnessing an upsurge in feminist activism which some claim is forming the fourth wave of feminism. It is timely then to reconsider how feminist writing (literary texts, literary theory, and literary criticism) has helped to shape, influence, and articulate debates about gender, sexuality, and society in the past and how contemporary feminist writing is continuing to be part of that conversation now. You'll have the opportunity to read and analyse some of the most influential feminist literary texts and literary theory. Writers studied on the course may include Margaret Atwood, Henrik Ibsen, Angela Carter, Jean Rhys, Jeanette Winterson, Sylvia Plath, Virginia Woolf, Ali Smith, Beyonce, and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. You'll study the ways in which feminist criticism and theory (including Kristeva, Cixous, bell hooks, Haraway, and Butler) has reshaped the canon, challenged the ways literature is taught as well as making us consider what literature can, might and ought to be. Feminism has also exacted different forms of writing and challenged dominant modes of representation. We will take a particularly close look at the relationship between feminism and the gothic, the short story, and experimental writing. Assessment will be by course work and project and you'll be assessed in both critical and creative modes. Students of all genders are equally welcome.




You will be presented with an opportunity to study in depth a number of key works of 20th century German literature and to explore ways in which they respond to, and reflect, the upheavals of 20th century history. While the focus will be largely on works of prose fiction, this does not preclude the study of other genres. Starting with the modernist crisis of language ("Chandos-crisis") we will look at works by authors such as Kafka, Rilke, Benjamin, Thomas Mann, Joseph Roth, Ingeborg Bachmann, Christa Wolf and W. G. Sebald. All works studied are available in translation so that a knowledge of German, while always welcome, is not a requirement.




From Defoe's True Relation of Mrs Veal's posthumous visit to her friend Mrs Bargrave through the classic English ghost stories of MR James to the ghosts in the machine of modern media, the ghost, shade, revenant or spectre continues to haunt human imagination. Subtle shadings of the spectre materialise at different times, in different contexts - materialised reminder of unquiet remains; manifestation of memory or the unconscious; physiological disturbance; psychical stain. These undecidable and ambivalent presences, or uncanny sensations of hauntedness, will be explored in this module. Writers studied on the module might include Daniel Defoe, M.R. James, Henry James, Margaret Oliphant, May Sinclair and Susan Hill. The module will draw on studies mapping the development of the belief in ghosts (Sasha Handley's Visions of an Unseen World) and exploring the cultural history (Andrew Smith's The Ghost Story 1840 - 1920). It will also consider critical engagements, such as Jacques Derrida's Specters of Marx and Jodey Castricano's Cryptomimesis.




Anglo-American modernism is one part of a movement that spread from 19th-century Europe across the globe. This module investigates the ways that English has engaged with modernism as it reaches outward to the European periphery and beyond. International modernist authors are available to English readers in multiple translations. You'll learn to assess different English versions of each text, relating stylistic analysis to questions about the intellectual, artistic, and political legacies of modernism. You'll study lesser-known poets and novelists such as Italo Svevo in Trieste, rescued from oblivion by James Joyce and author of the comic psychoanalytic memoir Zeno's Conscience; Fernando Pessoa in Lisbon, who wrote under multiple poetic identities, each with its own fictional biography; Clarice Lispector, brought as a child from Ukraine to Brazil, where she produced meticulous, unsettling accounts of consciousness; and the Peruvian poet Cesar Vallejo, creator in Trilce of one of the most daring lexical and syntactic experiments of the avant-garde. On successful completion of this module, you'll be able to produce comparative analysis of different translations, evaluating them critically in relation to key modernist concepts, claims and writing practices. You'll have expanded your understanding of modernism's international reach and the ways that we understand that reach in English. The module is taught by seminar and assessed by summative project. It will be of particular interest if you've studied modernism, translation, or international literature earlier in your degree. There is no language requirement but if you have knowledge of the relevant source languages, you'll be given the opportunity to use that knowledge.




'It's the end of the world as we know it (and I feel fine)' #R.E.M. (1987) 'The etymological root of the word apocalypse is the Greek apokalypsis, meaning "unveiling" or "uncovering".' #Rosen (2008) This module will explore the origins and development of apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic fiction by British writers from the nineteenth century to the present day, with a particular emphasis on late twentieth and twenty-first century writing. In this module you will consider how in apocalyptic fiction the moment of catastrophe is also a moment of truth-bearing revelation, an unveiling which brings with it the opportunity to make a fresh beginning. You will also examine the biblical narratives and other ancient stories that frequently underpin such fictions; reflect on what apocalypse means to us culturally; consider the way such fictions reflect the anxieties of the cultural moment in which they were written; and explore some of the major trends of apocalyptic fiction, such as eco-catastrophe, nuclear holocaust, pandemics, survivalism, apocalyptic visions, and technology gone wrong. You will also attend to the way such narratives frequently participate in the genres of dystopian and speculative fiction. The module will conclude by interrogating what apocalypse means to us today through the study of recent works of apocalyptic fiction. You will be encouraged to explore and discuss a range of associated literary criticism and theory. You will, in the second of the summative assessments, have the opportunity to write your own apocalyptic fiction with an accompanying critical reflection.



LITERATURE AND SCIENCE 1660-1750 (pre-1789)

What is science? What is scientific language? Did you know that there was no such thing as a scientist until 1833? We're accustomed to thinking of literature and science as separate disciplines - science deals with cold hard facts, literature with the imaginary and fictional - but to the occupants of the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, such a distinction would have been strange and unfamiliar. On this module, you'll investigate how the current separation between literature and science came about. You'll explore the social, cultural, and ideological imperatives that secured the dominance of science in intellectual discourse; you'll examine how notions of scientific objectivity emerged; and you'll discover how the new and allegedly more 'rational' knowledge produced by scientific practice was received by its first audiences. You'll read a variety of texts, ranging from advocates of the new science (such as Thomas Sprat, part founder of the Royal Society in 1660, and Richard Bentley, proponent of later Newtonian philosophy); to early modern scientific writing (such as Robert Hooke, who famously described a fly's eye seen through a microscope, and Robert Boyle, whose experiments with a bird inside an air pump became one of the most well-known images of the enlightenment); to literary estimations of the value (or otherwise) of scientific knowledge. This module will provide you with a sense of historical perspective, and an understanding of the kinds of agenda implicit in the modern claim that STEM subjects make the humanities seem both impracticable and unprofitable.




You'll be provided with the opportunity to write an 8000-word dissertation on literature of the period before 1789 (excluding American literature). The dissertation topic must be agreed by a supervisor, and both topic and supervisor approved by the module organiser.




You'll be provided with the opportunity to write an 8000-word dissertation on literature of the period before 1789 (excluding American literature). The dissertation topic must be agreed by a supervisor, and both topic and supervisor approved by the module organiser.




You'll be provided with the opportunity to write an 8000-word dissertation on literature of the period from 1789 to the present day (excluding American literature). The dissertation topic must be agreed by a supervisor, and both topic and supervisor approved by the module organiser.




You'll be provided with the opportunity to write an 8000-word dissertation on literature of the period from 1789 to the present day (excluding American literature). The dissertation topic must be agreed by a supervisor, and both topic and supervisor approved by the module organiser.



LYRIC (pre-1789)

The module will incorporate a historical survey of Western lyric, looking at its inception in the poetry of Pindar and Sappho, and the Aristotelian division of poetic arts in lyric, dramatic and epic. It will cover lyrics from Provencal troubadour poets through the Italian and English renaissance to Romantic lyric. Finally, it will cover the fate of lyric in the present day, from 'conceptual writing' and 'post-humanism' which offer a thoroughgoing rejection of lyric, to the embrace of lyric in contemporary young poets. The module will start by considering the question: 'What is lyric'? The purpose is not to establish a transhistorical concept of lyric as genre or mode, but rather to see how different thinkers at different times have approached it. This is a particularly timely question for literary criticism and poetics. We will isolate certain tropes, ethics, and focal points that are taken to be characteristic of lyric, whilst at the same time probing the historicity of lyric as a concept, especially regarding the ideology of the lyric 'I' that is associated with romanticism. THIS MODULE FULFILS THE PRE-1789 REQUIREMENT.




This module will study late 18th-century and early 19th-century writings in the context of scientific and medical innovation. We consider whether it may be appropriate to view the work of novelists such as Maria Edgeworth, Jane Austen and Mary Shelley as a response to, and even a protest against these newly (or, more correctly, nearly) professionalised, male-dominated worlds. These women writers often concern themselves with the 'consumers' as well as the providers of the services offered by these professions; this module considers why that might be and how this kind of contextualisation might impact upon our readings of their work.




Who has not heard of Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table? Yet why, of all medieval traditions, is this legend the most pervasive medievalism of modern culture? To answer this question we return to the Middle Ages to discover the development from its 12th century Celtic roots, through heroic and romance cultures to its final flourishing in the 15th century in a work by Malory, which all modern versions (including film and tv) are today based upon. The source base of the medieval Arthurian legend is diverse, encompassing chronicle, ballad, courtly and popular romance in verse as well as prose. A variety of English Arthurian texts will be read alongside the folklore of the Welsh Mabinogion collection, Geoffrey of Monmouth's influential Latin work and French Romance texts (in translation). This module focuses on the literary and ideological innovations of Arthurian writers and on the intertextual relations which hold between medieval Arthurian texts. Students will examine the genres and voices of medieval Arthurian narratives, including its resort to prophecy, epic discourse, pseudo-historical discourse, pseudo-exegesis and courtly romance. The various national responses to ideas of myth, legend and history, the cultural significance of differences in the representations of women in the various texts, as well as questions regarding individuality and selfhood that arise in literature produced in a volatile period of religious and social uncertainty and dissent will be explored. This module will enable students familiar with medieval Romance to enhance their awareness of the Arthurian traditions, but is also suitable for students who are encountering medieval literature for the first time.




Did medieval people really believe in monsters? Giants, dragons and half-human hybrids are just some of the fantastical creatures that populate Middle English literature. Too readily dismissed by modern readers as mere whimsy, or else the product of credulous minds, instead this module takes monsters seriously as revealing facets of a sophisticated myth-making society. You will consider monsters in a range of genres such as romance, saints' legends, travel writing and visual imagery, as well as their reception by medieval and modern readers and critics. You will interrogate the various discourses of monstrosity and consider what makes a monster through consideration of topics such as: the horror and allure of the monstrous body; monstrous appetites; sexuality and sexual deviance; geography and racial alterity. You will also explore the literary and cultural construction of 'human monsters' (women, pagans, Jews) rendered 'other' due to their perceived divergence from societal and religious norms. You will be able to apply your developing understanding of the discourse of monstrosity in a range of practical contexts such as field trips. Previous experience of Middle English literature will be an advantage but is not required. By the end of the module you should have a more nuanced understanding of the place of monstrosity in medieval literature and have an increased awareness of the ways in which language is used to both shape and respond to perceived differences.




You'll explore writing as a site of resistance and protest and consider representation itself as inherently political. Does this make the work of a reader radical, or how can that work be radicalised? Taking a lead from the thinking of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, you'll ask what it means to write or speak a dominant language in such a way that it stutters or stammers? What would such writing or speaking look or sound like? Deleuze and Guattari suggest that minor literature (minoritarian form in general) takes a dominant, hegemonic, major language and forces it to 'say' something different, and to do so differently, dislocating (deterritorialising) it so that a new voice (speaking from a new constituency) can be heard. They use the works of Kafka, a Czech Jew writing in 'official' German, as a representative example of how a dominant, major language can be pressed into the service of a minor literature, as a way of inscribing new constituencies, while other critics have considered sub-cultures' re-appropriation of language, post-colonial writing back, musical subgenres and alternative/underground cinema as also being iterations of minoritarian impulses. You'll explore various aspects of writing or speaking back, writing against the grain, saying the things major language finds itself unable or uncomfortable to speak about, and articulating the unheard. Writers and texts might include Kathy Acker, William Burroughs, Elias Khoury, Dana Spiotta, Jennifer Egan, along with punk 'zines, samizdat writing and manifestoes.




'We all say it's nerves, and none of us knows what it means', says a character in Wilkie Collins' 1860 novel, The Woman in White. Our aim is to think about how a discourse of the 'nerves' - the 'nervous temperament' and nervous illness - can be both so pervasive culturally and so slippery in its meaning. This interdisciplinary module takes you from the late 17th century, when the concept of 'neurologie' first emerged, to the 21st century, linking literary, medical and philosophical writing to explore the representation - the discursive formation - of the 'nerves'. The historical range of the module is not meant to imply a transhistorical understanding of nervous illness or temperament, but rather will enable us to analyse the historically specific nature of the nervous body and what it is made to mean, culturally, within different contexts. In this way, we will be working with issues as diverse as religious 'enthusiasm', hysteria and hypochondria, sensibility, sensation, fear of modernity, neurasthenia, manliness and effeminacy, shell-shock, PTSD and the concepts of the healthy or fragile body of the nation. Spanning time and genre, the literary texts studied will take us from the earliest, Jonathan Swift's satire, A Tale of a Tub (1704) up to Siri Hustvedt's analytical memoir, The Shaking Woman, Or, A History of My Nerves (2010). The module equips you to work within an interdisciplinary frame and across historical periods from the late 17th century to the present.




New Narrative began as a late 20th century creative rebellion. From its origins in 1970s punk, second-wave feminism and the gay rights movement, New Narrative writers explored and exploited the relationship between the personal and the political, gossip and literature, high and low art. It is the place where the tell-all memoir meets critical theory, and the place from which writers talked about their own desires and their own experiences in order to challenge the status quo. It is also a writing of friendship and coterie, a place to collaborate and to be influenced: many texts from the New Narrative movement were worked on in workshops that took place in the back rooms of bookshops or in each others' apartments in San Francisco. Over the last 40 years, New Narrative has spawned generations of radical, experimental, genre-defying writers, from Kathy Acker to Chris Kraus to Maggie Nelson. You'll explore the major themes of New Narrative through reading key texts from the movement. You'll also explore the theoretical and cultural influences surrounding the movement. You will think carefully about the role of the writer in relation to the text, particularly the phenomenon of the 'cult' writer; you'll be encouraged to focus your critical studies on one particular New Narrative author in order to explore their life and legacy alongside their body of work. Finally, there will be opportunities to produce your own 'freak' and genre-defying texts.




This module invites you to rethink the relationship between human beings and "their" environments by allowing you to study key poems from antiquity to the eighteenth-century. We begin by considering three poems written in Ancient Rome that explore human interactions with the environment: Lucretius's On the Nature of Things, Ovid's Metamorphoses, and Virgil's Georgics, all of which we read in translation. The module then invites you to explore a range of English poetry from the Old English period to the eighteenth century, such as The Seafarer, "The Owl and the Nightingale," and Andrew Marvell's "The Garden." We will read poems in Anglo-Saxon and Middle English using the original texts with a facing translation. We end with studying the poetry of the first African American poet to publish a book of poetry, Phillis Wheatley, who represented her own transformation through the Middle Passage from Africa to North America and translated a section from Ovid's Metamorphoses. You will read selections from recent eco-critical work alongside each week's poem or poetry selection. THIS MODULE FULFILS THE PRE-1789 REQUIREMENT.




This module offers you the chance to learn about LGBTQ literature and its development in English-speaking countries, as well as approaches to queer theory, and the relationship of both literature and theory to culture and current events. This means analysing sexuality and gender and the representation of such identities in literature and society, and discussing topics such as intersectionality, the body, and heteronormativity. Authors studied may include James Baldwin, Alison Bechdel, Gore Vidal, and Sarah Waters, as well as children's books and young adult novels by Nancy Garden, Ellen Wittlinger, and Marcus Ewert. Authors of theoretical texts looked at may include Nikki Sullivan, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Luce Irigaray, Judith Butler, Leo Bersani, and Teresa de Lauretis. Understanding how LGBTQ characters are featured in literature also helps us to see how queer people are understood in a given society in general, so you will also discuss current events and their links to literature and theory. You will look at a variety of genres in order to see how these different text types work, how they queer genre, and how they approach similar themes in different ways.




This module is concerned with three genres that are ostensibly non-fictional: travel writing, the memoir, and literary journalism. All of these texts are written in the first-person and yet often claim to be objective and factual. What precisely is the difference between fiction and non-fiction? And what is 'creative' in creative non-fiction? Much of this prose examines issues of identity and cultural history, mixes the exotic and the mundane, and assembles a peculiarly hybrid text that might include photography, ethnographic passages, anthropological techniques, and quite a bit of social history. Above all, it offers us literary reflections on a reality often perceived to be peculiar, 'other' or disturbing. Note that much of the writing here comes from continental Europe and the Americas. We will examine the stylistic, typographical or visual means by which writers make claims on authenticity or, conversely, undermine our faith in their complete veracity. We will reflect on how personal experience and research have been translated into engaging prose without narcissistic wounds being paraded, libel threats looming, or an armada of footnotes crowding the page. What are the techniques, in memoir, travel writing and literary journalism that account for the pleasure readers take in the company of a narrating, wandering or reflecting first-person persona? How and why is (creative) non-fiction so often also an intertextual space for commenting on reading and on the nature of the literary? NB: This module is independent of the practice-based 2nd option The Writing of Journalism and is not concerned with news journalism, blogs, or feature writing; however, it continues that module's concern with prose style and voice and interrogates issues of verifiability.




The Italian Renaissance was predicated on the recovery and imitation of classical models, and subsequently by an artistic (re)turn to the natural. But what if those models were deemed obscene or pornographic by Christian morality? Are they any less valid intellectually or artistically? Should we (or can we) ignore the imitation of such models? And are all forms of the natural to be celebrated, or are some to be suppressed? This module examines the culture of artistic, moral and intellectual freedom that emerged in the early sixteenth century in Italy, coincident with the advent of print, a culture which was suppressed by Church and State via the Counter-Reformation in the mid-sixteenth century. Obscene and pornographic texts and images which explicitly illustrated diverse sexual practices and sexualities were produced, disseminated, copied, censored, prohibited and destroyed. The module examines the classical precedents and models for Renaissance erotic and pornographic works, their late medieval precursors, and the spread of such literature by English imitators following the Counter-Reformation. It examines the threat that libertine culture posed to the Church and State (which were not always in agreement), the legal and intellectual responses in England and on the continent, the establishment of the papal Index of Prohibited Books and the Italian Inquisitions in Rome and Venice, and early forms of censorship. Crucially, these obscene materials were not alien to humanism, the core intellectual project of the Renaissance, but were defended as being entirely in-keeping with its classicizing impulses. In fact, the obscenities were produced for the most part by those with a humanist education. The module ultimately examines the moment at which print culture, Renaissance idealism, and State control intersected and clashed. Each week opens with a discussion of a particular piece of Renaissance art deemed obscene or scandalous, pertinent to the texts that week. Students will present on the art in order to introduce the week's focus.




Platonist epistemology permeated Elizabethan culture: the aim of this module is to explore the relationship of Shakespeare's topic of the world as a stage to Neoplatonic conceptions of perception, politics, poetry and love. We will consider Plato as a poetic philosopher and Shakespeare as a philosophical poet by asking what difference the 'dramatic' form of Plato's Socratic dialogues makes to their 'ideas', and, conversely, how in Shakespeare's plays, particularising plots unfold into generalising arguments. In both cases, the concern is with how dramatic form with its special mixture of what is seen, what is said, what is known and what is enacted, can clarify perennial philosophical questions. We'll also touch on several possible mediators between Plato and Shakespeare, including Castiglione, Erasmus and Sir Philip Sidney.




This interdisciplinary module investigates the interweaving of literature and visual culture in Europe in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, focused on Britain and France, and paying particular attention to the ways in which gender, sexual and working identities, bodies and relationships are depicted, performed, disrupted, questioned and sometimes radically reimagined. The writers and artists at work in this period produced a rich stew of aesthetic and literary innovation, often experimental and provocative in tone, style and subject matter. The cultural movements which are combined under the general heading of the 'fin de siecle', including Symbolism, Aestheticism and Decadence, also contributed to the development of modernism and this module is intended as an opportunity for students who wish to extend their studies from the Level 5 Victorian Writing and Modernism modules and to explore both interdisciplinary and creative-critical opportunities. We will examine different kinds of writing (novels, short fiction, drama, essays, experiments in art criticism, science and pseudo-science) and art (painting, photography, early film), as well as dance and performance.




According to Roland Barthes, emotion is 'a disturbance, a bordering on collapse: something perverse, under respectable appearances; emotion is even, perhaps, the slyest of losses'. This module takes this 'perversity, under respectable appearance' as the starting point for asking how an attention to our emotions - our feeling, affects, and intimacies, as well as our aversions - can make us rethink what it means to be critical and creative readers and writers. Drawing on a range of theoretical and critical work from literary studies, cultural theory, art, philosophy, sociology, neuroscience, psychology, creativity and creative writing studies, cognitive science, history and anthropology, we will ask what it means to read, and write, 'with feeling'. What is the relationship between language and feeling? Between the body and emotion? How does literature touch and move us? Are our 'aesthetic' emotions real? How does technology - the digital, virtual, prosthetic and online - affect our ideas about emotion? Are emotions universal and timeless, or historically and culturally specific? Private and personal, or collective and public? How do emotions construct gender, class, race, nationality, and other kinds of identity? Why do some feelings attract more critical interest than others? How does an attention to emotion affect our work as readers and writers? We will begin by building a theoretical and critical literacy for thinking feeling, before focusing our inquiry around specific themes that might include: Animal Passions; Psyche, Pathology and Resistances to Psychoanalysis; Feeling Texts: Touch, Texture and Fictional Fabrications; Moving Fictions: Cinema, Virtuality, and E-motion; Zombies: Can Dead Subjects Feel?; Affective Economies; Queering Feeling; and Feeling Human: Robots, Artificial Intelligence and Clones. We will engage with a range of literary texts and other aesthetic forms (such as art, film, etc.) chosen to correspond with our critical concerns. Please note that this is an indicative description only, and the weekly themes and reading are revised each year to stay up to date with current work in the field. You will have the opportunity to engage both as critical and creative readers and writers, and there will be critical and creative assessment options. This module is open to all students. It will complement level 3 options such as 'Literature and Deconstruction', 'Nervous Narratives', 'Traumaturgies', ' Literature and Human Rights' and 'Queer Literature and Theory'.




Crime, like death, has always been with us, yet it was only in the 19th century that de Quincey proposed considering murder as one of the fine arts and Poe established many of the central tenets of crime fiction with his 'tales of ratiocination'. Currently, crime fiction is the most bought, and read, literary genre and one diverse enough to include 'whodunits'; Baker Street's most notable resident; the genteel amateur detectives of the 'Golden Age'; hard-boiled thrillers; noir; psychological fiction and even the post-modern iterations of anti-detective fiction. Narratives about crime and criminals, detection and sleuths (not forgetting the violence and victims) can be both conservatively formulaic and radically diverse. It can articulate dangerous and disturbing transgressions against society (the crime) while also revealing the ideological forces of law (what constitutes a crime) order (the various detective figures) and the systems of justice and ill-justice (courts and punishment, state and government) with which a society protects and proscribes itself. Crime fiction is also concerned with interpreting clues, discovering secrets and solving enigmas, much in the way that critical theory investigates and analyses literary texts. In this module you will explore key texts and writers in the development of crime fiction as well as examining critical and theoretical responses to such texts. It will allow you to respond both creatively and critically to the concerns of, and thinking about this diverse genre.




What kinds of mechanisms, processes, and negotiations turn a writer's work into a marketable commodity? How do the social and economic conditions of writing (who, when, what for) affect the kinds of work writers produce? And what kind of impact might printed works, and print technologies, have on the activity of reading, and on how subjects conceive of their relationship to the wider world? On this module, you'll discover how a new and commercial booktrade contributed to broader kinds of literary, cultural, and social change: you'll see how books as a market driven business challenged traditional notions of authorship; gave rise to modern concepts of copyright and intellectual property; and forged new kinds of correspondence between books and an emergent reading public. You'll investigate the workings of the late seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century booktrade under three interconnected headings: bookselling (key publishers, such as Bernard Lintott, Jacob Tonson, and Edmund Curll, alongside 'trade' publishers such as Morphew and Roberts); writers and writing (a variety of authors, such as Delarivier Manley, Elizabeth Rowe, Mary Wortley Montague, John Dryden, Alexander Pope, Jonathan Swift, Daniel Defoe, and more obscure 'hack' writers); and reading (kinds of circulation, from the manuscript, to subscription publication, to the lending library). This module will sharpen your sense of writing as an activity that is shaped by economic factors, and it will deepen your understanding of what it means, historically, to be an author. There are no pre-requisites for this module, although it will be of interest to those who have studied Eighteenth-Century Writing in the second year.




You'll be reading two of the most important novels of the 18th century over several weeks so that you can attend to them closely as they unfold in time. The novels are Samuel Richardson's Clarissa and Frances Burney's Evelina. The secondary readings will engage the central debates happening in novel studies today. You'll have the opportunity to experiment with ways of working with texts beyond close reading and draw on the methodologies of book history and of the digital humanities.




For something to be reborn it must first die. The Italian Renaissance ('rebirth') sought to disinter the past in order to reanimate the present, but in order to do so the present had to come to terms with its loss - as Petrarch asked, 'who can doubt that Rome would rise again instantly if she began to know herself?'. How can we best understand this process of loss and reanimation? How did Renaissance writers understand it, and how did they bridge the gulf between death and rebirth? And can we do the same? In order to answer these questions, you'll examine the twin practices of imitation and translation in English responses to some of the most exciting and influential texts of the Italian Renaissance. It does so in two ways: through a sustained analysis of those practices in their diverse forms and genres (sonnets, epic, dialogue, drama), and by imitating the process of creative imitation ourselves. In other words, we step into the shoes of the Renaissance imitator. The module allows us to understand how Italian poets such as Dante, Petrarch and Ariosto responded to the classical past (and each other), and how English poets and playwrights such as Wyatt, Spenser, Shakespeare and Jonson responded to Italian models. By imitating the imitators - for example by writing sonnets - we gain a deeper understanding of how imitation is both a creative practice and a critical process, both a reading and a rewriting. Students are not expected or required to know any Italian in advance.




The novel of ideas is an important form that is both under-theorised and largely neglected in accounts of the development of the novel in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Novelists of ideas see fiction as a medium in which conflicting philosophical, political and religious ideas can be staged, advocated and debated. The cultural formation of modernism, and its institutionalisation in the universities, was predicated on the wholesale rejection of the novel of ideas, in favour of forms of psychological realism promoted by Henry James and Virginia Woolf, and#relatedly#the formal experimentation associated with James Joyce and Samuel Beckett. T.S. Eliot articulated literary modernism's hostility to ideas when he praised Henry James's 'mastery over, his baffling escape from, Ideas'. 'He had a mind so fine', Eliot mused, 'that no idea could violate it'. After setting the scene with two classic nineteenth-century novelists of ideas#George Eliot and Ivan Turgenev#this module explores the hostility to the novel of ideas among critics like Woolf, James, Leavis and T.S. Eliot, and their preference for psychologically realistic characters and the refinement of novelistic form. It then follows the development of the novel of ideas in 20th and 21st-century British writing. It will also touch on later influential critics such as Theodor Adorno and Fredric Jameson, who argued that the politics of the novel existed not in any political arguments or ideas explicitly laid out on the page, but in the text's formal properties, its gaps or silences, or its 'political unconscious'. Under this paradigm, committed writing was simply embarrassing, and any explicit political statement in a novel needed to be read 'against the grain' by the heroic critic. Despite the hostility of the modernist generation and the literary-critical establishment, the novel of ideas persisted as a vibrant, important form in the twentieth century and up to the present. It constitutes a rich tradition that stands to one side of our conventional periodising categories of modernism, late modernism, postmodernism and the contemporary. This module focuses on recovering that tradition and encourages students to read with the grain of novels of ideas. This is not to encourage simplistic readings#on the contrary, the module aims to develop, in collaboration with students, a way of talking about novels of ideas that is properly sensitive to the ways in which those novels actually function, and to the way the novel of ideas has developed since the Edwardian period when Woolf and James effectively won the argument against Wells and Galsworthy. We will focus on the ways in which novels of ideas bring opposed ideas into dialogue and manufacture resolutions (or not); how comedy and satire are used to undermine certain intellectual positions; how character-to-character dialogue is employed as a formal device to convey philosophical, religious or political disagreements; how ideas become embedded in particular settings (as in dystopian fiction); how writers deploy asymmetrical dialectics to ensure that the right side wins the argument (or not); and how prejudices are confronted in the staging of the novelistic text. The novel of ideas is often a didactic form, and this module assumes that novels can impart knowledge, seeking to take seriously the ideas and arguments that are debated in these novels. These include socialism, evolutionary thought, Catholic social teaching, political violence, feminism, totalitarianism, Communism, aesthetics, racism, identity politics, and religious conflict. Indicative texts: George Eliot, Felix Holt, the Radical; Ivan Turgenev, Fathers and Sons; H.G. Wells, Food of the Gods and/or Kipps; G.K. Chesterton, The Napoleon of Notting Hill; John Galsworthy, The Man of Property; E.M. Forster, Howards End; Aldous Huxley, Brave New World; Katherine Burdekin, Swastika Night; George Orwell, Animal Farm; Doris Lessing, A Ripple from the Storm; Iris Murdoch, Under the Net; Rebecca West, The Birds Fall Down; Malcolm Bradbury, The History Man; J.G. Ballard, High Rise; Hanif Kureishi, The Black Album; Zadie Smith, On Beauty; Kamila Shamsie, Home Fire.




It's widely recognised that modernist literature is characterised by a revolution of the word. Less widely recognised, and little explored, is the relationship between modernist linguistic experimentation and literary nonsense. Beginning with two 19th-century writers, Carroll and Dickinson, Through the Looking-Glass goes on to explore various of the radical disruptions in ordinary sense and meaning practiced across 20th-century writing, asking about their purposes and possibilities, and inquiring into what they tell us about ordinary language. It takes in such subjects as William's Empson's analysis and practice of poetic ambiguity; surrealism's Freudian inquiry into the illogical language of the unconscious; Joyce's invention of new words to express this illogic; Plath's surrealist play with metaphor; the early Auden's distortion of syntax, pronoun, and tense; and Ashbery's indeterminacy. We will read such work against various theories of nonsense, laughter, and play. The principal focus will be on poetry and language itself and there will be detailed discussions of word-history, ambiguity, broken syntax, incomplete metaphor. Major topics will include the relation of nonsense to dreams, jokes, games, and madness, and this will be informed by psychoanalytic theory, especially in Freud's writing. This is not a course on children's literature, but on some very challenging modern literature, mostly poetry. You will need to enjoy uncertainty and have good close-reading skills. There will be opportunities for creative writing of nonsense and creative writers are encouraged to take the module. By the end of the module you should have an understanding of the various ways in which modern writers have revolutionised and distorted language, and the reasons why they did so. You should be able to analyse the differences to meaning made by such distortions, and to trace the gaps in sense that they open. You should be able to draw on relevant theories of nonsense, laughter, play, childhood, and language, to enrich your analysis. You could offer your own creative writing in the same mode of nonsense, and if so, this will show an understanding of the techniques of the writers studied. In either case, you will have done some of your own original reading, thinking, and research, beyond the texts and topics covered in seminars.



TRAGEDY (pre-1789)

You will look at the long history of tragedy in an effort to understand what, if anything, allows us to call both Oedipus Rex and Death of a Salesman tragedies. We will begin with the age-old question of what is the difference between tragedy in "real life" and on stage. Our answers to this question will help us isolate what it is that makes a performance specifically tragic rather than "merely" dramatic, moving, emotional. Our first readings will focus on the ancient Greeks, the inventors of tragedy, and the religious, artistic, and political circumstances that helped create this genre. Throughout the semester we will repeatedly return to the Greeks to see how more modern tragedies adapted or rejected their notions of the tragic and created new tragic criteria particular to their own time and place. We will look at the ways in which ancient tragic notions of personal responsibility are affected by new ideas about mental health, socioeconomic pressure, nature, and Christianity. Also, as we see tragedy moving into different media, such as opera, the novel, and film, we will examine the ways in which the different media of music, prose, and cinema affect the tragic effect.




This interdisciplinary module explores how 'the city' has been thought about and represented through a selection of writings (fiction, poetry, theory), visual material (painting, photography, film, street art) and occasionally other sensory material (sound, smell), spanning around 1850 to the present day and focused on two particular cities and great capitals of modernity, Paris and London. In this period the growth of the great European cities has created a new and diverse set of environments and possibilities. Utopias, dystopias, sites of ruin and construction of all kinds; what different, contradictory or coherent versions of urban experience do these texts and images offer? We'll investigate what kinds of writing, art, discourses and attitudes cities seem to generate. Was modernism, for example, as Malcolm Bradbury asserts, an 'art of cities'? How do textual and pictorial techniques intersect, for example, in the case of nineteenth-century Impressionist art and writing, twentieth-century Surrealism, Situationist provocations, or contemporary street art and photography? What is 'psychogeography'? In the company of the flaneur/flaneuse, the detective and other urban wanderers, we'll consider aspects such as space, place, urban being and time, love and eroticism, hauntings, crime, memory and the presence of the past, the individual and the crowd, consumption, nature and the natural, urban Gothic, and the pressures, preoccupations and thrills peculiar to urban living and imagining. The main mode is seminar discussion, supported by short lectures, virtual gallery visits and film viewings. Assessment is by means of an individually designed project which is supported by individual tutorials and formative work of various kinds, including the opportunity to practise reading images and spaces, as well as literary texts. There is scope to produce creative-critical (including visual) work as part of your assessment.




What is style? It is the most essential and yet most elusive property of writing. How can we possibly describe something so intangible? How can we discover and develop our own distinctive styles as writers, of fiction and non-fiction? These questions were raised with new urgency, precision, and ambition by modernist writers, who urged both that an attention to style was the first aim of good criticism, and that any good writer must develop by trying their hand at imitating and parodying the styles of previous writers, in the way that painters once were taught by imitating previous painters. This creative-critical module approaches these questions and explores these techniques through a particular focus on one of the central strands in modernist fiction, the representation of consciousness. We will focus on novelists and writers including Henry and William James, Marcel Proust, James Joyce, Gertrude Stein, Dorothy Richardson, Virginia Woolf, Dostoevsky, Ralph Ellison, Vladimir Nabokov, Samuel Beckett, and Eimearr McBride, subjecting to close analysis each writer's style: among many other topics this will include the way they break up the linearity of the sentence to do justice to the non-linear nature of the mind; how they explore self and other through the figure of the double and the full range of characters across a novel; and how they render the story-telling property of consciousness through experiments in plot. We will consider such subjects as desire, anxiety, memory, sexuality, gender, and race. Students will be expected both to analyse style and to seek to imitate it: we will, to give one example, write about Dorothy Richardson and also try to write like her, and in doing so to develop both our critical understanding and our own writing skills. This is meant to be a 'bridge module' of particular use to students who wish to develop as writers of fiction, whether or not they are students in English and Creative Writing. But it will also help all students develop their distinctiveness as writers of non-fictional prose and their capacity to reflect on the implications of different ways of making sentences and paragraphs.




'Truth is stranger than fiction' and it's often more moving, powerful, inspiring and funnier too. You'll have plenty of opportunity to discover some extraordinary 'true' stories on this module as well as the possibility to write one of your own. You'll think about the ever-shifting boundaries between 'truth' and 'fiction' as well as the ethical questions that arise when you're writing about real people and situations. This is a module that enables you to do something very different in your final semester at UEA. During this module you'll consider if and how non-fiction writing differs from fictional literature. You'll learn about research, how to read and interrogate personal documents and the challenges presented by memory and anecdote. How do you assemble facts so that the resulting story is as compelling as fiction? What clothes can the non-fiction writer steal from the novelist's wardrobe? Throughout the module you'll read different types of non-fiction and think about how individual authors weave their research material into narrative form. You will have the opportunity to write your own piece of non-fiction for your summative assessment if you wish. This is a 5,000 word creative or critical piece which everyone will workshop during the semester. There will also be tutorials in which you can discuss your summative work. By the end of the module you'll have gained an understanding of the craft of non-fiction and you'll have developed your ability to ask pertinent questions of any non-fiction you read, be it a newspaper story or a highly researched account of a life or situation. You'll have honed your research abilities and perhaps your interview skills too if you decide to write something that involves interviews. You'll also have thought about the ethical implications that may arise when writing about 'real life' - all qualities that are highly valued by employers.




This module begins by introducing you to the central mythic drama of Christianity: in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, and 'fell' from perfection; to save humankind, God had to turn his own son into a mortal man and let him be crucified. This story raises the most profound questions about the origins of evil, free will, redemption, and the nature of God. The module seminars unfold through intensive close-reading of the early-modern literary masterpieces which were shaped by these questions, culminating in an in-depth study of all the major late poetry of John Milton: Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained and Samson Agonistes. Before reaching Milton, we read major works by his influential predecessors, which might include authors such as John Donne and Edmund Spenser, and we also pay close attention to writing by women, especially that of Lucy Hutchinson (1620-1681), who wrote her own poetic account of the Fall at the same time as John Milton wrote Paradise Lost. Summative assessment takes the form of a 5000-word project in which you will explore the module's central questions by tackling at least two of the texts we've studied. You will be given formative questions every week (and writing exercises in some weeks) to help structure your learning. The module assumes no knowledge of religion, John Milton, or of early-modern literature in general.




Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. In some cases optional modules can have limited places available and so you may be asked to make additional module choices in the event you do not gain a place on your first choice. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Further Reading

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  • Ask A Student - Gabriel

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  • UEA Literary Festival

    The University of East Anglia's first literary festival took place in 1991 and over the last twenty five years we have welcomed a host of award-winning authors, journalists, illustrators, scientists, economists, broadcasters and more.

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  • Home Truths

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  • UEA Award

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Entry Requirements

  • A Level ABB including an English Literature related subject or BBB including an English Literature related subject with an A in the Extended Project
  • International Baccalaureate 32 points including HL 5 English
  • Scottish Highers AAABB including an English Literature related subject
  • Scottish Advanced Highers BCC including an English Literature related subject
  • Irish Leaving Certificate 3 subjects at H2, 3 subjects at H3 including an English Literature related subject
  • Access Course Humanities & Social Sciences pathway preferred. Pass the Access to HE Diploma with Distinction in 30 credits at Level 3 including an English Literature module, and Merit in 15 credits at Level 3
  • BTEC DDM alongside grade B in an English Literature related subject A-Level (or equivalent qualification). Excludes BTEC Public Services, BTEC Uniformed Services and BTEC Business Administration.
  • European Baccalaureate 75% including 70% in an English Literature related subject

Entry Requirement

If you do not have an A-Level or equivalent qualification in English Literature (or English Language and Literature), once you have submitted your UCAS form we may then contact you to ask you to submit a short analysis of a passage of a literary text in support of your application.

If you do not meet the academic requirements for direct entry, you may be interested in one of our Foundation Year programmes.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

Applications from students whose first language is not English are welcome. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including writing, speaking, listening and reading):

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each component

We also accept a number of other English language tests. Please click here to see our full list.

INTO University of East Anglia  

If you do not yet meet the English language requirements for this course, INTO UEA offer a variety of English language programmes which are designed to help you develop the English skills necessary for successful undergraduate study: 


If you do not meet the academic and or English requirements for direct entry our partner, INTO University of East Anglia offers guaranteed progression on to this undergraduate degree upon successful completion of a preparation programme. Depending on your interests, and your qualifications you can take a variety of routes to this degree:

·         International Foundation in Business, Economics, Society and Culture (for Year 1 entry to UEA)

·         International Foundation in Humanities and Law (for Year 1 entry to UEA)


Most applicants will not be called for an interview and a decision will be made via UCAS Track. However, for some applicants an interview will be requested. Where an interview is required the Admissions Service will contact you directly to arrange a time.

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year.  We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry on your UCAS application.


The annual intake is in September each year.

Alternative Qualifications

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level.


GCSE Offer

You are required to have Mathematics and English Language at a minimum of Grade C or Grade 4 or above at GCSE.

Course Open To

UK and overseas applicants.

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support

Tuition Fees

Information on tuition fees can be found here:

UK students

EU Students 

Overseas Students

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

Please complete our Online Enquiry Form to request a prospectus and to be kept up to date with news and events at the University. 

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries: or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515