MA Degree Programme
English, and English & Film Studies What is distinctive about English?
With twelve full-time teachers, we cover all aspects of current literary study, but are small enough to be able to deal personally and individually with our students.
There is an undergraduate Literature and Film Society. Each year, a lively drama group stages a play - perhaps a piece of English mediaeval drama. Our students take advantage, too, of the extraordinary cultural resources available close- by: Dundee’s award-winning repertory theatre
Level 1 Introduction to Literary Study
What makes a novel a novel? What is distinctive about poetry? How do you analyse a play in performance? The course explores a diverse range of drama, fiction and poetry in order to suggest answers to these questions.
Early Modern to Early Romantic Literature, 1564-1789
This module surveys the development of English Literature from the Early Modern period to the end of the Eighteenth century in relation to the ideas of the Enlightenment and the emergence of modern culture, with its concerns about identity, gender, religion, and power. This module will explore Early Modern drama, including texts by William Shakespeare, Christopher Marlow, John Webster; metaphysical poetry including work by John Donne, Andrew Marvel, John Milton and the rise of the novel form, including work by Daniel Defoe or Samuel Richardson.
Reading the Screen: An Introduction to Film Studies
This module will focus on how films are created, concentrating on topics such as mise en scene, editing, auteur theory, genre and the styles of key Directors.
Perspectives and Movements in Cinema
This module builds on Reading the Screen by focusing on examples from a number of distinct movements in the history of the cinema, such as Italian Neo-realism, the French New Wave, Japanese cinema of the 1950s, and British Cinema of the 1940s.
Romantic to Victorian Literature, 1789-1901
The module explores Romantic and Victorian Literature paying particular attention to the way fiction, poetry and drama develops out of earlier traditions and tendencies and how they break from earlier movements. The work of the Romantic poets is read along with a series of nineteenth-century texts which link closely with the themes and moods of the poetry. Some of these texts will bring out the powerful strand of Gothic Romanticism which is the counterweight to the social realism of the Victorian novel. Poets such as John Keats, Samuel Coleridge, William Wordsworth, Lord Byron, Percy Shelley and Alfred Tennyson, novelists such as Emily Bronte, Charles Dickens, Bram Stoker, Robert Louis Stevenson and playwrights such as Oscar Wilde will be included.
Modernist to Contemporary Literature, 1901-Present Day
This module examines 20th and 21st century writing, paying particular attention to the way fiction, poetry and drama develops out of earlier traditions and tendencies and how they break from earlier movements. It examines how the forces of modernity - industrialisation, urbanisation, technological changes, war, empire, migration challenges previous ways of structuring and making sense of the world through a range of 20th and 21st century texts including fiction by Joseph Conrad, James Joyce, Katherine Mansfield, Chinua Achebe, Angela Carter, Richard Matheson, Kirsty Gunn and Ian Rankin, poetry by TS Eliot, WB Yeats, Mina Loy, WH Auden, Seamus Heaney, Geoffrey Hill, Philip Larkin, Carol Ann Duffy and Margaret Atwood, and drama by Harold Pinter, Caryl Churchill and Samuel Beckett.
Classic Hollywood Cinema: An Excessively Obvious Cinema
This module explores the Golden Age of Hollywood (1930-1960), with emphasis on the studio system and methods of marketing and production, and stresses the relationship between the US government and the film industry during the period. Genres such as romantic comedy, crime, horror, westerns, and melodrama, will be discussed, as will the key directors of the Golden Age.
Film Noir: The Dark Side of the Street
The aim of this module is to provide an introduction to what is arguably the most interesting and important of all film styles - Film Noir. It will analyse the distinct visual style and aesthetics of Film Noir and will explore the cultural climate of repression and paranoia engendered by Cold War politics and its influence on this style of film-making. Of central importance will be the influence of German Expressionism and émigré film makers, and issues of representation, especially of women and stereotypes.
Level 3 Contemporary Literature
This module introduces a range of British Literature since 1950 and aims to develop a working knowledge of aesthetic and cultural paradigms relevant to the period, including postmodernism, late modernism, the absurd, neo- realism and metafiction. The module will address topics and issues such as the politics of identity, the representation of history, the problematics of subjectivity, sexual and cultural difference, and ideas of centrality and marginality through a consideration of poetry, drama and fiction.
This module will look at various aspects of film studies such as the art film, the avant-garde and animation to examine the idea of cinema as an art form. It will consider notions of film as a narrative and industrial medium. It will also explore film's relation to older art forms - such as music and painting - and other facets of popular culture.
European Cinema Since 1960
This course will provide an introduction to European cinema from the 1960s to the present day. It will examine key movements – such as the Nouvelle Vague and the work of leading Directors – such as Fellini, Godard and Herzog - while also looking at notions of art cinema, national cinema and European cinema's relationship with Hollywood.
This module introduces students to key texts from the mediaeval period. Students will become familiar with the main literary genres of the 14th and 15th centuries through a detailed study of a selection of mediaeval poetry, drama and prose, read in Modern English translation.
The aims of the module are to explore issues of difference and community in contemporary American society and to examine ways in which oppositional voices are represented. Materials for discussion include film as well as literary texts.
How do writers bear witness to social, cultural and political changes in the aftermath of empire? What is at stake in the definition of cultural identity? Why choose to write in English? This module addresses the impact of colonialism on a small selection of literary and filmic texts from Africa, the Caribbean, Britain and Canada.
Modernism and Modernity
This module studies poetry and fiction from 1890-1945. It explores the concept of Modernism, as a series of experimental styles, in relation to modernity, the social and political contexts Modernism responded to (such as technological change, urbanism, psychology, feminism, and the Great War).
Romantic and Gothic Literature
This course studies the poetry, prose and fiction of the Romantic Period (1780-1830). Among the topics discussed are the literature of Sensibility,
and Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA), an arts complex including a cutting-edge art gallery and art-cinema facilities. The Department itself is home to the University’s Creative Writing Professor and an annual Literary Festival which regularly attracts high profile writers to Dundee. There are
also Literary Salons, as well as a Comic Art Forum, featuring talks by comic artists and writers, and an annual Comics Conference.
For further information see www.dundee.ac.uk/english
We not only teach the traditional topics of English Literature but also the literatures of America (North and South), of Scotland, and of many other parts of the English-speaking world as well as new developments such as digital poetry and graphic novels.
Exciting recent developments are the introduction of the joint honours degree in English and Film Studies, which builds on the highly successful introductory courses in Film Studies which have run in recent years. We also offer undergraduate modules in Creative Writing.
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