| Department of English

M.A. in English

The M.A. degree is awarded on the completion of 16 courses comprising 12 compulsory courses (including a supervised essay course in the final semester) and 4 optional courses. Each course in the program is worth 4 credits.

Total Credits


Core Credits


Major Electives

Core & Elective Courses

Core Courses

The courses below are compulsory

Course code
Methods in the analysis of culture

This course seeks to equip students from the humanities and especially the social sciences with methods which they might fruitfully deploy when engaging with problems related to culture. The course is made up of four units . The first comprises a set of readings that engage with one of the central problems in the analysis of modern culture : the deeply ambiguous role of technology in the  production of culture . The second unit will address another cultural effect of modern capitalism – its capacity to produce desire. The third and fourth sections focus on recent methodological breakthroughs that have unfolded in the key domains of women’s and post-colonial studies.

Unit 1: Culture and Industrial Capitalism

Theodor Adorno, ‘Culture Industry Reconsidered’ in The Culture Industry – selected essays on mass culture. Edited and with an introduction by J. M. Bernstein, London, Routledge, 1991, pp. 98-106.

Walter Benjamin, “The Work of Art in the Age of its Technological Reproducibility ” in Walter Benjamin, Selected Writing 1935- 1938 , Harvard University Press, 2002,pp 101-134

Unit 2: Desire of the insubstantial

Marx, “On the fetishism of commodities” From Capital Vol. 1, Part 1, Chapter 1, Section 4.

Freud ,“Fetishism” from the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud . J. Strachey tras. Hogarth Press, pp 147-57

Jean Baudrillard,The System of Objects Verso, 1966

Unit 3: Gendering Cultural Studies

Donna Haraway, “A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century” in Simians, Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature. Routledge: New York, 1991, 149-181.

Gloria Anzaldua, "How To Tame a Wild Tongue." in Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza. Aunt Lute Books: San Francisco. 1999, 75-86.

bell hooks, “Gangsta culture" in We Real Cool: Black Men and Masculinity. Routledge: New York, 2004, 15-31.

Supplementary Readings

Linda Zerelli, "We Feel Our Freedom': Imagination and Judgment in the Thought of Hannah Arendt" Political Theory 33, No. 2 (April 2005): 158-188.

Moira Weigel" Further Materials Towards A Theory of The Man Child" The New Inquiry. July 9, 2013.

Wendy Brown, "Freedom and the Plastic Cage." in States of Injury: Power and Freedom in Late Modernity. Princeton University Press; New York. 1995, 3-29.

Unit 4: Post-colonial Cultural Studies

Gayatri Chakraborty Spivak, "Moving Devi" in Other Asias. Blackwell Publishing: Oxford, 2003, 178-208.

Rajeswari Sunderajan, “The Ameena Case” in The Scandal Of The State: Women: Law and Citizenship in the Postcolonial State. Duke University Press; Durham, 2003, 45-71.

Supplementary Readings

Dipesh Chakraborty, “Of Garbage, Modernity and the Citizen's Gaze." in Habitations of Modernity: Essays in The Wake of Subaltern Studies. University of Chicago Press: Chicago, 2002, 65-79. 17

Bill Ashcroft, “Sugar and slavery” in MSF Dias ed. Legacies of Slavery: Comparative Perspectives. Cambridge Scholars Publishing: Newcastle, UK, 2008, 108-125.



Evaluation in this course will be continuous and conducted throughout the semester. The object of evaluation will be to test a student’s knowledge of the material taught through the course and the development of her analytical, critical and writing abilities. A final grade will be awarded on the basis of written presentations in seminars, participation in seminars and a 2,000 words term paper to be submitted at the end of the course. The course instructor may also set a short written examination to test the student’s knowledge of the texts taught.

Literary Theory

This course will familiarize the student with some key ideas in the history of literary theory and criticism. We shall read the relevant texts closely, beginning with the ancients and arriving at the first half of the twentieth century. From Plato to Fish, we will pay special attention to the epistemological and ontological presuppositions of each theorist. Students will write short papers on important areas covered in class. There will be an open-book exam at the end of the semester.

Unit 1: Text and World: The question of mimesis
Plato: Book X of The Republic
Aristotle: Excerpts from Poetics
2 weeks

Unit 2: Text and Author: Poetic subjectivity
Alexander Pope: Excerpts from An Essay on Criticism
William Wordsworth: Excerpts from “Preface to Lyrical Ballads”
ST Coleridge: Excerpts from Biographia Literaria
TS Eliot: “Tradition and the Individual Talent”
3 weeks

Unit 3: Text and Reader (A): Aesthetics
Immanuel Kant: Excerpt from Critique of Judgment
Edmund Burke: “The Sublime and the Beautiful Compared”
2 weeks

Unit 4: The Text Itself (A): Formalism
Wimsatt and Beardsley: “The Intentional Fallacy”
Viktor Shklovsky: Excerpts from “Art as Technique”
2 weeks

Unit 5: The Text Itself (B): Language and Semiotics
Mikhail Bakhtin: “Heteroglossia in the Novel”
Ferdinand de Saussure: Excerpts from Course in General Linguistics
Roland Barthes: Excerpts from Mythologies
3 weeks

Unit 6: Text and Reader (B): Reader Response Theory
Roland Barthes: “Death of the Author”
Stanley Fish: “How to Recognize a Poem When You See One.”
2 weeks

Two assignments during the semester (2500 words each)
Final Exam (open book)
Class participation

Advanced Writing and Research Methods

This course will introduce post-graduate students to the art of research and formal research paper writing. Expect to be taken through the nitty-gritties of research training in genres of formal writing: research proposal, research paper, conference abstract, conference presentation, MLA citation, methods of researching library catalogues (card and digital), indexes and databases and how to access and gain membership in the major research libraries in Delhi.

Unit 1: Reading to Write
Brooks, Cleanth., Gregory Colomb, Joseph Willams Eds. The Craft of Research. Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 1995.
Foucault, Michele. “The Statement and the Archive” from The Archaeology of Knowledge & the Discourse on Language. New York: Pantheon Books, 1972
Gallaghar, Catherine and Stephen Greenblatt. “Introduction” Practicing New Historicism. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997
Geertz, Clifford. “Thick Description: Toward an Interpretative Theory of Culture” in The Interpretations of Culture. New York: Basic Books Inc., 1973
MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, Seventh Edition.
3 weeks

Unit 2: Pick an area for a research paper
Make a Bibliography
Annotate the Bibliography
Research Proposal
Write a literature Review
3 weeks

Unit 3: 5-page Paper
5-page paper due (1700 words)
Draft 1
Draft 2
3 weeks

Unit 4: 10-15 page Paper
10-15 page paper due (3500-4000 words)
Rough Draft 1
Rough Draft 2
Final Draft
Conference abstract
Conference presentation

The Global 18th Century

It is impossible to understand 18th Century Europe without understanding the 18th century as a global phenomenon. This course will be interdisciplinary and will track various strands through literary analysis, cultural studies and history. Decades of the long eighteenth century are remarkable for the prose output of essayists, diarists, pamphleteers, writers of conduct books, and travelogues. The rise of political parties, mushrooming of clubs and coffee houses, and the new publishing houses gave huge impetus to prose writings. This course will also track that particular moment of European history when the common public started asking uncomfortable questions about ‘imperialism’. From a geo-political perspective, this course will resonate deeply with 21st century political realities.

Unit 1: Primary Texts
Selections from Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels
Excerpts from Mary Wortley Montagu’s Turkish Letters
Secondary Texts:
Clement Hawes’ introduction to the critical edition of Gulliver’s Travels
Donna Landry, “Alexander Pope, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, and the literature of social comment" in The Cambridge Companion to English Literature 1650-1740. 1999
Felicity Nussbaum, Introduction to The Global Eighteenth Century
4 weeks

Unit 2: Primary Text
Selections from Jonathan Swift’s A Tale of Tub
Secondary Text:
Excerpt from Carole Fabricant’s Swift’s Landscape
3 weeks

Unit 3: Primary Text
Joseph Addision, The Musical Instruments of Conversation; On Giving Advice
On Long Winded People; Reflections by Richard Steele
Excerpts from Roger De Coverley Series
Example of Conduct Literature: Lady Sarah Pennington - An Unfortunate Mother’s Advice to Her Absent Daughters
Secondary Texts:
Caroline Davis, "Publishing in the Eighteenth Century: Popular Print Genres" 2005
Critical Edition of Pennington’s prose piece by Mary Lynette Austin, 2009.
3 weeks

Unit 4: Primary Text
Excerpts from Pepys and Evelyn’s Diaries
Secondary Texts:
Dan Doll and Jessica Munnis, Essays on the Seventeenth –and Eighteenth-Century Diary and Journal, 2006
Srinivas Aravamudan’s chapter titled “Lady Mary in the Hammam” in Tropicpolitans, an excerpt from Enlightenment Orientalism.
4 weeks

Reading Comprehension in-class exam
Long paper (min. 10 double spaced pages)
Power-point presentation on long-paper

The Novel in 19th Century Europe

The three European nations that play a crucial role in the evolution of the novel in Europe in the nineteenth century are Britain, France and Russia. In this course we will investigate how the novel evolved in these countries with a view towards locating the points of convergence and divergence. As part of this investigation we will also study what two influential critics have to say about the novels in question as well as the 19th-century European novel in general.

Unit 1
Jane Austen, Mansfield Park
4 weeks

Unit 2
Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment
6 weeks

Unit 3
Stendhal The Red and the Black
4 weeks

Secondary Readings Georgy Lukacs ,"Balzac and Stendhal’’ in Studies in European Realism, pp. 65- 85 Mikhail Bakhtin, excerpts from "Forms of Time and of the Chronotope in the Novel" from The Dialogical Imagination pp.243-258.

3 papers of 1500 words each on all 3 novels (one on each novel)
A research paper of 2000-2500 words on one of the three authors studied during the semester
An examination at the end of the semester

South Asian Writing

This course is meant to familiarize the students with the major literary texts and debates from 20th/21st century South Asia. It is divided into two sections, consisting of novels and poetry respectively. Through an exploration of Hyder, Rushdie and Hanif, the students get a chance to explore the literary responses to the turbulent political history of the subcontinent from the Partition, to the Emergency to the fall and rise of dictatorships in the region. Through studying the poetry of Dhasal, Pasha and Das, we investigate the issues of caste, gender and conflict as inflecting the aesthetic of the subcontinent’s poets. The background readings help to ground these debates with critical writings on caste, on the viability of the category of ‘South Asian literature’, on the role of English in the region, and on conflict in the region.

Unit I
Qurratulain Hyder, River of Fire (NDPC: 1999)
Salman Rushdie, Midnight’s Children (Random House: 2006)
Mohammed Hanif, A Case of Exploding Mangoes (Vintage: 2009)
9 weeks

Unit II
Namdeo Dhasal: “Man, You Should Explode”, “Speculations on a Shirt”, “Cruelty”, “The day she was gone”, “Arsefuckers Park”, “New Delhi: 1985”, “Mandakini Patil: A Young Prostitute, My Intended Collage” Kyla Pasha, Selections from High Noon and the Body (Yoda Press, 2010), “Poem on a Paper Aeroplane Floated Across the Border”, “High Noon and the Body”, “Saddest Seattle Song”, “Up Next, Lahore Song”, “Playmate of the Year”
Kamala Das, Selections, “Farewell to Bombay”, “The Dance of the Eunuchs”, “A Feminist’s Lament”, “An Introduction”, “The Looking Glass”, “Summer in Calcutta”, “Nani”, “Gracious Allah”
5 weeks

Background Readings
B.R.Ambedkar, Sections 1-11, The Annihilation of Caste (1936)
Harish Trivedi, "South Asian Literature: Reflections in a Confluence" Indian Literature, Vol. 49, No. 5 (September-October 2005), pp. 186-194
Raja Rao, Preface to Kanthapura (1938)
Perry Anderson, "Why Partition?", London Review of Books Vol 34 No. 14, 19 July 2012

Mid-semester - Written Assignment (Choice between 10 questions) - 1500 words
Final Submission - Written Assignment (Question decided individually for cadidates in consulation with the instructor) - 2500 words

The Long Renaissance

This course will examine in detail four quintessential moments that visibly shaped thought and knowledge in the British Renaissance. We will read a prose fantasy by a leading humanist, poetry that is mired in anxieties of love, politics and science, a play that puts self-doubt and skepticism at the heart of early modernity, and finally two books of an epic that gives aspiration, failure and the exercise of justification a grand lyric. The theme of wanting to know, sometimes more than what is obviously knowable, will underlie our reading and enquiry.

Unit 1: Utopia by Sir Thomas More
Stephen Greenblatt, "At the Table of the Great: More's Self-Fashioning and Self-Cancellation," in Renaissance Self-Fashioning
Quentin Skinner, "Sir Thomas More's 'Utopia' and the language of Renaissance humanism"
3 weeks

Unit 2: “In Defense of Poesie” by Philip Sidney
Selections of sonnets by Petrarch, Spenser, Sidney, Shakespeare, Marvel and Donne
Dolan, Francis E. “Taking the Pencil out of God’s hand: Art, Nature and the Face Painting Debate in Early Modern England”. PMLA 108. 2 (March 1993) 224-239
3 weeks

Unit 3: Hamlet by William Shakespeare
Peter Stallybrass, Roger Chartier, J. Franklin Mowery, and Heather Wolfe
“Hamlet’s Tables and the Technologies of Writing in Renaissance England”
Selections from Kastan, David Scott, Ed. Critical Essays on Shakespeare’s Hamlet. New York: G. K. Hall, 1995.
4 weeks

Unit 4: Book I & 2of Paradise Lost by John Milton
Fish, Stanley. Surprised by Sin Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1967.
Guillory, John. "From the Superfluous to the Supernumerary: Reading Gender into Paradise Lost." In Soliciting Interpretation: Literary Theory and Seventeenth-Century English Poetry. Eds Elizabeth D. Harvey and Katherine Eisaman Maus. Chicago and London: Chicago UP, 1990. 68-88.
4 weeks

2 papers (2500 words each)
1 creative response to any one of the texts or themes under discussion (this can be a set of poems, a story, a pamphlet, graphic art, anything at all). Word limit can be negotiated depending on the genre)
1 final paper (3500-4000 words) and conference-style presentation at the end of the semester


This course is meant to introduce the students to the major debates of the literary movement of Modernism in the early-mid 20th century. The selection of texts represents the range of experimentation with form and content that the movement exhibited. The texts emerge from as varied a set of places as Germany and Argentina, England and Russia, and Romania and Ireland, testifying to the transcontinental nature of the movement. The background readings from Bertolt Brecht, Frederic Jameson and Henri Bergson help us understand the new equations of the formal and the thematic that Modernism brought about.

Unit 1
Bertolt Brecht, Mother Courage
Eugene Ionesco, Rhinoceros
4 weeks

Unit 2
Virginia Woolf - To the Lighthouse
James Joyce - The Dead (from The Dubliners)
Jorge Louis Borges – "The Approach to Al-Mu'tasim", "The Garden of Forking Paths", " The Library of Babel", "The Secret Miracle".
7 weeks

Unit 3
T.S. Eliot - The Wasteland
Wilfred Owen – “Dulce et decorum est”, “A Terre”
Anna Akhmatova – “The Muse”, “Epigram”, “In Memoriam, July 19, 1914”
W. B. Yeats – “Leda and the Swan”, “Among School Children”
3 weeks

Background Readings
Bertolt Brecht, ‘The Street Scene’, ‘Theatre for Pleasure or Theatre for Instruction’, and ‘Dramatic Theatre vs Epic Theatre’, in Brecht on Theatre: The Development of an Aesthetic, ed. and tr. John Willet (London: Methuen, 1992) pp. 68–76, 121–8.
Henri Bergson, 1913 'The Intensity of Psychic States' in Time and Free Will: An Essay on the Immediate Data of Consciousness, George Allan & Company: London.
Fredric Jameson, 'Introduction' to The Modernist Papers, Verso: 2007.


Mid-semester - Written Assignment (Choice between 10 questions) - 1500 words

Final Submission - Written Assignment (Question decided individually for candidates in consulation with the instructor) - 2500 words

Translation Studies

Students will study the various approaches to the history, theory, and criticism of literary and humanistic translation. Topics of discussion would include study of translation criticism which is the systematic study, evaluation, and interpretation of different aspects of translated works, translator’s working methods, interviews with translators, multiple translations, the changing nature of interpretive approaches, theoretical models of translation, and criteria for the evaluation of translations It is an interdisciplinary academic field closely related to literary criticism and translation theory.

Unit 1: Equivalence and equivalent effect Walter Benjamin ‘The Task of the Translator’. In L. Venuti (Ed.)., The Translation Studies Reader, 2000
Eugene Nida ‘Principles of Translation as exemplified by Bible Translating’. R. A. Brower (ed.): On Translation, New York, OUP.
Swann's Way. (À la recherche du temps perdu #1) by Marcel Proust, Lydia Davis (Translator) 2004 by Penguin Classics (first published 1913) [ pp ‘Overture’]
David Bellos. 2012. Is That a Fish in Your Ear? Translation and the Meaning of Everything. [Article: A Fish in Your Ear: The Short History of Simultaneous Interpreting, pp 259-273]
5 weeks

Unit 2: Translation Shift Approach & Linguistic approach to translation
Jakobson, Roman. “On Linguistic Aspects of Translation.” In Translation Studies Reader by
L. Venuti. 2000. Routledge.
Vinay, Jean-Paul and Darbelnet, Jean. ‘A Methodology for Translation’. 1995. John Benjamins Publishing.
J C Catford, A Linguistic Approach to Translation. 1965. OUP
Zwart, K. M. van: ‘Translation and original: Similarities and Dissimilarities, I’, Target [pp 151 – 189]
4 weeks

Unit 3: Translation and Post-Structuralism Season of Migration to the North, 2003 Penguin Classics Series
Derrida, J. (1985). Des Tours de Babel. J. Graham (Tr.). In J. Graham (Ed.), [Difference in Translation (pp. 165-207)]. Ithaca, London
Geeta Patel . 2002. “Lyrical Movements, Historical Hauntings on Gender, Colonialism, and Desire” in Miraji’s Urdu Poetry. Stanford University Press.
3 weeks

Unit 4: Translation as a cultural act
K Ramanujan “Three Hundred Ramayanas”
Bassnett Susan. 1998. ‘Postcolonial Translation: Theory and Practice’
Bassnett S, Lefevere A. 1998 ‘Constructing Cultures’. [The Translation Turn in Cultural Studies. pp 123-140]
2 weeks

A short paper and class presentation of 1000 words on each of the Module
Final assessment: A Critical Analysis of a translated work (last week)
Class Participation and peer review

Feminist and Queer Writing

This course is meant to introduce students to important feminist and queer literature produced between the late 19th and the early 21st century. Whereas the section “Feminist Interventions” is meant as an exploration of feminist subjectivities across regions and races, the section “Queer Interrogations” studies how queer expressions have used existing social discourses to make place for same-sex desire in their worlds. The background readings open up the theoretical debates about categories of ‘women’ and ‘LGBT’, explore intersectionality as an analytical force, and subject feminist and queer claims to questions of form.

Unit 1: Feminist interventions

Selections from Carol Ann Duffy: ‘Warming her pearls’, ‘How many sailors to sail a ship?’, ‘Havisham’, ‘Valentine’, ‘Mrs. Midas’, ‘Anne Hathaway’, “The Lovers”, “Mrs Lazarus”

Audre Lorde: Zami: A New Spelling of My Name (Crossing Press: 1982)

Ismat Chughtai, A Life in Words, translated by M. Asaduddin (Penguin: 2012)

7 weeks

Unit 2: Queer interrogations

Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

Pandey Bechan Sharma ‘Ugra’ , Chocolate and Other Writings on Male Homoeroticism, translated by Ruth Vanita (Duke University Press: 2009)

Geetanjali Shree, The Roof Beneath Their Feet, translated by Rahul Soni (Harper Collins India: 2010)

7 weeks

Background Readings

Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, "Introduction: Axiomatic" to Epistemology of the Closet (University of California Press: 1990)

Judith Butler, "Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire" in Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (Routledge: 1990)

bell hooks, "Black Women: Shaping Feminist theory" in Feminist Theory: From Margin to Centre (Pluto Press: 2000)


Mid-semester - Written Assignment (Choice between 10 questions) - 1500 words

Final Submission - Written Assignment (Question decided individually for candidates in consultation with the instructor) - 2500 words

American Literature

This course is meant to be an indicative survey of 20th century American literature. The genres include novels, memoirs and poetry, and major issues explored in this course are crisis of American self-identity in the long 20th century, race and the afterlife of slavery, colonialism and neo-colonialism, and experimentation of genre within American literature.

Unit I
F. Scott. Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
4 weeks
Alice Walker, The Colour Purple
4 weeks

Unit 2: Nonfiction
Sherman Alexie, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
2 weeks

Unit 3: Poetry
Allen Ginsberg, ‘Howl’, ‘A Supermarket in California’, ‘America’
Elizabeth Bishop, ‘Arrival at Santos’, ‘Crusoe in England’, ‘One Art’, ‘Questions of Travel’
3 weeks

Unit 4: Short Stories
Junot Diaz, ‘How to date a browngirl (black girl, white girl or halfie)’
Raymond Carver, ‘A small, good thing’
Ernest Hemingway, ‘A clean, well-lighted place’
1 week

Background Readings
Zora Neale Hurston, ‘How It Feels To Be Coloured Me’
James Baldwin, ‘Notes of a Native Son’ Joan Didion, "Slouching Towards Bethlehem"
Vine Deloria, ‘Indian Humor’

Class Participation
Mid-term assignment (1500 words)
Final assignment (2500 words)

Supervised Research Paper

Course description not available.

Elective Courses

The student may select two courses from this list

Course code
The Literary and the Visual

This course which focuses on material drawn from Europe between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries aims to equip students with the ability to move between literary and visual forms and to track ways in which expressive strategies mutate in this process. The course will focus on formal categories such as realism and the differing ways in which chronotopes are deployed by literary and visual forms , but it will also take students through a set of paintings and novels to demonstrate how these forms can be brought into an interanimating relationship.

Unit 1: Time and Space
Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, Laocoon : An Essay on the Limits of Painting and Poetry translated by Edward Allen McCormick, Chapters 16-18
Mikhail Bakhtin “Forms of time and of the Chronotope in the Novel” ( excerpt) from The Dialogical Imagination translated by Caryl Emerson and Michael Holquist.
3 weeks

Unit 2: Realism
E.H .Gombrich, Art and Illusion ( excerpts )
Norman Bryson Vision and Painting ( excerpts)
Roland Barthes , S/Z Trans. Richard Miller.
Jaques Ranciere, The Future of the Image. trans. Gregory Elliott. Chapter 3, “Painting in the Text”
6 weeks

Unit 3: Painting and the Novel
Titian , “Venus of Urbino”
Vermeer “The Lace maker”
Peter de Hooch , “Woman Reading a Letter”
Jane Austen, Mansfield Park
Hogarth, “Industry and Idleness” all 12 plates
Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist
5 weeks

Evaluation in this course will be continuous and conducted throughout the semester. The object of evaluation will be to test a student’s knowledge of the material taught through the course and the development of her analytical, critical and writing abilities. A final grade will be awarded on the basis of written presentations in seminars, participation in seminars and a 2,000 words term paper to be submitted at the end of the course. The course instructor may also set a short written examination to test the student’s knowledge of the texts taught.

Writing Narratives

This course is concerned with establishing a dialogue between the writing and analysis of narrative which will enable students to become better critics of their own work as well as the work of others. We will look at the fictional as well as the nonfictional narrative. While the primary texts will form the bulwark of the course, from time to time, other material will be circulated among the students by way of class handouts. The class itself will be a combination of seminar, workshopping and in-class writing. In addition, students will have to turn in homework as well as assignments for grading.

Unit 1: Life writing and translating experience into fiction
Vladimir Nabokov, Speak, Memory (Life writing),
Tim O’Brien, ‘The Man I Killed’ (short story)
4 weeks

Unit 2: Fiction
Short stories
Jhumpa Lahiri, ‘Hell-Heaven’
Anton Chekhov, ‘The Lady with the Dog’
Raymond Carver, ‘What We Talk About When We Talk About Love’
Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient
7 weeks

Unit 3: Reportage
John Carlin, Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela and the Game
3 weeks

Secondary reading:
Sol Stein, Stein on Writing, St Martin’s Griffin, 2000.

A piece of life-writing (2000-2500 words) to be turned in at mid-term
Short story or piece of reportage (2000-2500 words) to be turned in as part of the final portfolio.
With the short story or piece of reportage the student will also submit a critical commentary that will analyse the process of creating the narrative and explain the creative decisions made in the process of composition. This will be turned in as part of the final portfolio
There will be an end-of-semester examination.

Postcolonial Theory

This course is meant to introduce students to the major debates within the field of Postcolonial Theory. The debates are outlined under three subheadings which familiarize the students with, first, the field of postcolonial literature and how it responds to the long history of the Empire, second, an exploration of how Postcolonial Theory is deeply invested in revising Eurocentric discourse and studying its consequences, and third, an investigation of how colour prejudice has been both the primary medium and the effect of the long duree of colonial domination.

Unit 1: Writing Back
Achebe, Chinua. “African Writer,” in Colonial Discourse and Postcolonial Theory, Patrick Williams and Laura Chrisman, Eds. New York: Columbia UP, 1994.
Ashcroft, Bill, et al., “Introduction”, “Cutting the ground: critical models of post-colonial literatures”, “Theory at the crossroads: indigenous theory and post-colonial reading”, “Rethinking the post-colonial: post-colonialism in the twenty first century” in The Empire Writes Back: Theory and Practice in Post-Colonial Literatures. London, Routledge, 1989.
4 weeks

Unit 2: Changing Discourse
Said, Edward., “Introduction”, “The Scope of Orientalism”, “Orientalism Structures and Restructures”, in Orientalism, New York: Pantheon, 1978.
James, C. L. R., “Preface to the First Edition”, “The Property”, “The Owners”, “Parliament and Property”, “The San Domingo Masses Begin”, “And the Paris Masses Complete”, in The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L'Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution, New York: The Dial Press, 1938.
5 weeks

Unit 3: Colouring Perceptions
hooks, bell. “Representing Whiteness in the Black Imagination,” in Grossberg, Lawrence et al., Cultural Studies. London: Routledge, 1990.
Fanon, Frantz., “Introduction”, “The Black Man and Language”, “The Woman of Colour and the White Man”, “The Man of Colour and the White Woman”, “The Black Man and Psychopathology” in Black Skin, White Masks. New York: Grove Press, 1962.
5 weeks

Mid-semester - Written Assignment (Choice between 10 questions) - 1500 words
Final Submission - Written Assignment (Question decided individually for candidates in consultation with the instructor) - 2500 words

Fairy Tale, Fantasy and Myth

Fairy Tale, Fantasy and Myth

Conceptualizing World Lit.

Conceptualizing World Literature

Art and Technology

The course will discuss, mainly, the relation between art and technology, where 'technology' is understood not only as the various techniques of production, fabrication and fabulation that are available at specific moments of production; but also as a condition which makes some techniques possible or impossible. While taking a few examples from painting and sculpting and literary writing, the discussion will mainly focus on how we understand the relation between art and technology, often seen as opposites of each other. After a discussion of the history of various techniques that available technology makes possible or impossible, we shall move on to more contemporary issues of 20th century art and 21st century art as well: graphic images made of ASCII code printing, to digital videography and 'live' coverage of events. The concept of 'virtuality' will be introduced.

Unit 1 12 hrs
A theoretical consideration of what technology means and does in contemporary society.
Gilbert Simondon, 'Technical Mentality'
Walter Benjamin, 'The Work of Art in the Age of Technological Reproducibility'
Stanislaw Lem, excerpts from Summa Technologica.

Unit 2 12 hrs
A discussion of selected stories by Walter Miller Jr., and of positive and negative evaluations of 'technology', with a focus on Section One of 'A Canticle for Leibowitz'
A discussion of Ursula Le Guin's 'The World for the World is Forest'

Unit 3 13 hrs
A return to the theoretical discussion of 'technology', along with a discussion of visual material from recommended readings.
Donna Harraway, 'The Cyborg Manifesto'
Martin Heidegger, 'The Questsion Concerning Technology'

Compulsory Readings:
Gilbert Simondon, 'Technical Mentality'
Martin Heidegger, 'The Question Concerning Technology'
Donna Haraway, 'The Cyborg Manifesto'
Stanislaw Lem, excerpts Summa Technologica
Walter Benjamin, 'The Work of Art in the Age of Technological Reprducibility'

Recommended Readings
Bernard Stiegler, Technics and Time vol. 1
Selections from fiction by Walter Miller Jr.
'Big Joe and the Nth Generation'
'Conditionally Human'
Section One of A Canticle for Leibowitz
Ursula Le Guin, 'The Word for the World is Forest'

Visual Material
BBC 'Life: Primates', the Chimpanzee Section
BBC 'Life:Birds'
Terminator 1-3
Solaris (Tarkovsky, 1972)
Ghost in the Shell 1-2 (anime)
H R Giger
Performance Art
Stefanie Trojan
Marina Abramovic
Ted Talks

Attendance and Class Participation:
Classroom Presentation:
Mid-term Assignment:
Term-end Assignment: