Course module - American Literature And Social Criticism, 1900-Present
Code : AMER20481 Credit rating: 20 Semester : 1
- To provide a literary and historical analysis of American society in the twentieth century;
- To provide a cultural and political analysis of the social contexts of American literature and film of the twentieth century;
- To develop students’ critical and analytical skills through close reading of literary and filmic texts;
- To foster skills in written expression and critical and analytical thinking at a level appropriate to work that will form part of the final degree assessment;
- To encourage and develop students’ research, presentation, and writing skills and their capacity to construct a sustained and coherent argument.
Objectives (Learning Outcomes)
By the end of the course, students should be able to demonstrate:
- An ability to understand aspects of American history and culture through literature and other cultural texts;
- A grasp of the range of literary and other cultural responses to American history and culture;
- A level of critical and analytical thinking and expression appropriate to work that will form part of his or her final degree assessment;
- An ability to work independently towards the production of written assessment at a level appropriate to work that will form part of his or her final degree assessment;
- Some ability to understand and theorize the ideological constructs of, and intersections between, race, class, caste, gender, and sexual identity;
- Some ability to construct a sustained and cohesive written argument and to deploy scholarly methods of presentation;
- Analyzing texts; speaking in front of groups; making connections to present-day concerns; improved writing; problem solving; self confidence in abilities.
One 2,500 word essay (40%); one 2-hour unseen written examination (60%).
The use of dictionaries in the examination is prohibited. This rule applies to all categories of students, including all Visiting Students.
THIS COURSE IS NOT AVAILABLE AS FREE CHOICE.
In this course unit we will examine American cultural texts of the long twentieth century, beginning with Uncle Tom’s Cabin and ending with contemporary American texts. The course considers the ways cultural texts produce and are produced by social change.
Pearl, Dr Monica
PROVISIONAL TIMETABLE FOR 2013-2014
Lecture: Tuesday, 11.00-1.00
Seminars: T B A
One 2-hour lecture plus one 1-hour seminar per week.
Readings and screenings may include (subject to change):
Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852)
Cliff Odets, “Waiting for Lefty” (1935)
Mary Antin, The Promised Land (1912)
Arthur Miller, Focus (1945)
John Howard Griffin, Black Like Me (1959)
West Side Story (1961)
James Baldwin, “The Fire Next Time” (1963)
Imitation of Life, Douglas Sirk, dir. (1959)
Lorraine Hansberry, “A Raisin in the Sun” (1959)
Thelma and Louise, Ridley Scott, dir. (1991)
James McBride, The Color of Water (1997)
Jane Lazarre, Beyond the Whiteness of Whiteness (1997)
Tony Kushner, “Angels in America” (1993)
Amy Waldman, The Submission (2011)