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2024/25 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

ENGL2095 Other Voices: Rethinking Nineteenth-Century Literature

20 creditsClass Size: 68

School of English

Module manager: Dr Emily Bell

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25

This module is mutually exclusive with

ENGL2096The World Before Us: Literature 1660–1830

Module replaces

ENGL3289 - Victorian Literature

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module introduces students to a wide range of writing from the period. Its focus on literature written in Britain but also recognises Britain’s troubled presence in other lands, as well as the writing produced there. Students will encounter works from across the nineteenth century, including many of the best-known works of Victorian literature, but will also encounter less familiar texts, written by all kinds of people, from many places around the world.


This module aims to introduce students to a broad range of nineteenth-century writers, genres, discourses and preoccupations. It explores the major social, political and literary developments in Britain during the period and how those developments were experienced by other writers elsewhere.

By situating British writers in a broader context, the module will encourage students to recognise nineteenth-century Britain’s connections to and relationships with the wider world. They will be encouraged to reflect on what it meant to be a writer and a reader in this period.

Reading literary texts alongside contextual material (including scientific, political, and religious writings, journalism and satire), students will be enabled to evaluate the place and function of the specifically literary discourses during this period and to learn how literature was viewed as one form of writing among many.

Learning outcomes
On successful completion of the module, you should be able to:
1. demonstrate knowledge of a range of literature from the period and analyse texts in different genres, styles, and registers
2. show a broader awareness of the context in which texts were produced in the period
3. use non-literary material to support arguments about nineteenth-century literature
4. construct arguments drawing on the appropriate critical literature

Skills outcomes
The module will develop:
• 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 (word processing).
• Time management and organisational skills.
• Independent learning.


This module explores some landmark works of the Victorian period in a range of genres, alongside less familiar texts. As well as literature from British writers in Britain, the course also introduces students to writing by those from a range of backgrounds elsewhere in the world.

For example, in 1857, Mary Seacole published a memoir in which she wrote about the difficulties she had, as a Jamaican-born black woman, obtaining a position as a nurse during the Crimean War. Although ‘other voices spoke for me’, she found that her experiences and references counted for little. In the end, Seacole took matters into her own hands and travelled there herself.

The module uses Seacole’s experiences to frame a broader examination of literature from the nineteenth century. Students will read what people wrote about themselves and their different experiences of living through the century. It will also allow them to reflect on the continuing legacy of the period and how it continues to be felt today.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours170.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Formative feedback will be provided in class during seminars. The first assessed piece of work (25%) will provide an opportunity for formative feedback in advance of the second (due at the end of the semester 75%).

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Assignment1000 word written assessment25.00
Essay2500 words75.00
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: 11/06/2024 11:40:26


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