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2007/08 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

ENGL3994 Other People's Pain: Suffering and the Problems of Representation in American Culture

20 creditsClass Size: 20

English

Module manager: Dr Denis Flannery
Email: d.j.m.flannery@leeds.ac.uk

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2007/08

This module is not approved as an Elective

Objectives

On completion of this module, students will have developed a theoretically sophisticated and practically nuanced sense of the relationship between suffering and representation in American literature, cinema and culture. Students will have explored these and related issues through close readings of a range of American texts (novel, memoir, drama and cinema) from the late nineteenth century to the present day. They will have done so in dialogue with a body of recent related critical writing. The module will also give students the opportunity to develop their own skills of observation, debate and extended critical writing.

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.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.


Syllabus

This module explores the complex relationship between aesthetic representation and suffering in American culture. It does this in a way which is attentive to the formal and ethical problems posed by the representation of pain. The module's concentration on the operation of these issues in American culture necessitates consideration of related questions of literary form, historical remembrance, gender, sexuality, race, retribution, aesthetic pleasure and pain's co-modification. These will be addressed through theoretically informed and specific readings of texts by writers such as Willa Cather, Toni Morrison, Mark Doty and through a consideration of the uses of pain made by popular (especially cinematic) cultural forms.

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
Meetings51.005.00
Seminar101.0010.00
Private study hours185.00
Total Contact hours15.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Seminar preparation, reading, essay writing.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Contribution to seminars.

1 x 1700 word unassessed essay (Week 7)

Methods of assessment

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


Coursework
Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay4000 words100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

This essay will be assessed only if the unassessed essay requirement has been met.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 05/03/2008

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