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2008/09 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

ENGL3255 Stylistics and Literary Pragmatics

20 creditsClass Size: 20


Module manager: Dr Christiana Gregoriou

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2008/09

Pre-requisite qualifications

Students wishing to take this module must have passed an introduction to language study in the School of English or another department (such modules include 'Language, Text and Context', 'Foundations of Language Study', 'Language Methodologies and Research Methods', a Level 1 module in Linguistics and Phonetics, or similar modules in other departments in Modern Languages). Other students who do not meet this requirement, but do have an A in English language A-level, and wish to do this module, should consult the module tutor, as should any student who is uncertain whether they meet the pre-requisite requirements.

Please note: This module is restricted to Level 2 and 3 students.

This module is approved as an Elective

Module summary

In this module, students will familiarise themselves with stylistic analytical methods, which will help them understand and explain the various effects generated by literary texts of various kinds. The module is split into three blocks, each of which explores the stylistics of poetry, prose and drama respectively, giving students the opportunity to practise the three groups of methods at appropriate intervals.


To introduce students to the area of stylistics and pragmatics through an analysis of texts across various literary genres and periods, from such texts as Shakespearean poems, to contemporary novel, sitcom and film extracts.

Learning outcomes
Students will have developed:
- the ability to use written and oral communication effectively;
- the capacity to analyse and critically examine diverse forms of discourse;
- the ability to manage quantities of complex information in a structured and systematic way;
- the capacity for independent thought and judgement;
- critical reasoning;
- research skills, including the retrieval of information, the organisation of material and the evaluation of its importance;
- IT skills;
- efficient time management and organisation skills;
- the ability to learn independently.

Skills outcomes
Skills for effective communication, oral and written.
Capacity to analyse and critically examine diverse forms of discourse.
Ability to acquire quantities of complex information of diverse kinds in a structured and systematic way.
Capacity for independent thought and judgement.
Critical reasoning.
Research skills, including information retrieval skills, the organisation of material, and the evaluation of its importance.
IT skills.
Time management and organisational skills.
Independent learning.


This module will explore the relationship between literature and language. A range of concepts from the field of stylistics and pragmatics will be introduced, whilst investigating how this developing body of knowledge can be used to enhance our understanding of the literary reading process. We will explore topics such as the role played by personal and cultural knowledge, metaphor, the ways in which texts direct attention and focus, and the creation and experience of literary 'text worlds'. Areas of study will include models such as Fowler's notion of 'mind style', Emmott's 'frame theory', Short's framework for speech and thought presentation, and various models for the analysis of narrative structure, poetic diction, and the pragmatics of dramatic discourse. We will look at works from a range of genres and literary periods, while students are also encouraged to explore their own selection of texts, both in seminars and in assessments. In addition to providing a range of stylistic analytical skills for the study of literary texts, the module encourages a critical approach to theory and methodology in the field.

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours185.00
Total Contact hours15.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Teaching will be through weekly seminars (10 x 1 hour) plus up to 5 additional hours (content to be determined by the module tutor). The 5 additional hours may include lectures, plenary sessions, film showings, or the return of unassessed/assessed essays.

Private Study: Seminar preparation, reading, essay writing.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Contribution to seminars.

1st assessed assignment.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Assignment1,700 words66.70
Assignment2,750 words33.30
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 24/04/2008


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