Module Identifier EN30920  
Academic Year 2004/2005  
Co-ordinator Dr David E Shuttleton  
Semester Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)  
Other staff Dr Christoph P Lindner, Mrs Carol M Marshall, Dr Matthew R Jarvis, Mr Michael J Smith  
Pre-Requisite EN20120  
Course delivery Other   20 Hours 10 x 2 hour workshop/seminars  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment Continuous Assessment: 2 x 2,500 word essays100%
Supplementary Assessment Resubmit any failed elements and/or make good any missing elements. 

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module students should typically be able to:

1. analyse the relationships between different theoretical approaches;

2. evaluate the significance of particular theoretical approaches for the practice of literary criticism;

3. employ particular theoretical approaches in the critical analysis of literary text;

4. reflect on their own critical practice in a theoretically informed way.


This module aims:

1. to build upon the experience gained in the previous theory module;

2. to enable students to explore the relationship between literary theory and literary analysis;

3. to enable students to gain experience of the practical application of literary theory to literary texts.

Brief description

The aim of this module is to enable students to explore the relationship between literary theory and literary analysis by means of a weekly two-hour 'workshop', building upon the experience gained in previous theory modules. Thus, the key notion of the module is the provision of opportunities to gain experience of the practical application of literary theory to literary texts.

All teaching associated with this module is completed in Semester 1. The deadline for the second assessed essay will be the first day of semester 2 and the mark for the module will be released with the Semester 2 results.


We will be using four broad headings and studying four literary texts. At least three of these texts will be chosen from a designated list of eleven 'core' texts; the fourth text may (if desired) be the free choice of individual group tutors.

The eleven 'core' texts from which seminar texts will be selected are as follows:

1. Geoffrey Chaucer, The Wife of Bath's Prologue and Tale
2. William Shakespeare, The Tempest
3. Daniel Defoe, Roxana
4. Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights
5. Alfred Tennyson, selected poems
6. Herman Melville, Billy Budd
7. Henry James, The Turn of the Screw
8. James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
9. Virginia Woolf, Between the Acts
10. Toni Morrison, Beloved
11. Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse 5

The four broad theoretical headings, which all groups will use, are:

1. Politics
2. Literary Context and Authorship
3. Textuality
4. Sex and Gender

Tutors will decide individually on the order of treatment of these topics, and will match topic to text according to their own judgement. Tutors may wish to touch on several of the topics for a given text, rather than matching each of the four literary texts to just one of the four broad topics.

The module is assessed by two pieces of course work (each contributing 50% of the module mark), and there is no examination. The assessment tasks will be designed so as to allow students to demonstrate (i) their grasp of relevant aspects of critical theory, (ii) their skill in applying theory to text, and (iii) their understanding of the problems and opportunities entailed in doing so.

Reading Lists

** Should Be Purchased
Toni Morrison Beloved Vintage 0099760118
Kurt Vonnegut Slaughterhouse 5 Vintage 0099800209
Alfred Lord Tennyson (ed. Aidan Day) Selected Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson Penguin 0140445455
Emily Bronte Wuthering Heights Penguin Popular Classics 0140620125
Henry James The Turn of the Screw and The Aspern Papers Penguin 0141439904
James Joyce A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Penguin 0142437344
Daniel Defoe Roxana Oxford World's Classics 0192834592
Virginia Woolf Between the Acts Oxford World's Classics 0192837060
William Shakespeare The Tempest Arden 1903436087
Set texts will be selected from the list below:
Herman Melville Billy Budd, Sailor and Selected Tales Oxford World's Classics 0192839039
Geoffrey Chaucer (trans. David Wright) The Canterbury Tales Oxford World's Classics 019283360X


This module is at CQFW Level 6