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Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Synoptic Study-Unit 1: Ideas and Concepts

LEVEL 03 - Years 2, 3, 4 in Modular Undergraduate Course



DESCRIPTION This study-unit provides students with the opportunity for guided synoptic study, leading to a three-hour exam. Three main areas of English studies – literature, linguistics, cultural criticism – are represented through a close focus on three themes, namely, Irony, Discourse and Contemporary Mythologies. In this study-unit, the focus is on Ideas and Concepts pertaining to the indicated themes, unlike ENG3052, where the emphasis falls on practical applications and interpretation.

Study-unit Aims:

- To introduce students to the expectations and demands of synoptic study;
- To provide students with guidance and opportunities for discussion of synoptic approaches to literature, linguistics and cultural criticism;
- To gently introduce students to the monographic teaching prevalent in postgraduate courses;
- To assess students, in formal examinations, on their grasp of key ideas and concepts within English Studies.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Appreciate the pervasiveness of irony in literary texts, and its value as a trope through which entire literary histories and traditions can be approached;
- Grasp established and evolving theoretical positions on the study of Irony in literary criticism and theory;
- Appreciate the importance of Discourse as a broad conceptual category within Linguistics that has, nonetheless, some quite specific meanings in this area of study;
- Appreciate the resonances of mythology generally in established and evolving culture;
- Approach contemporary mythologies as a means to learning more about the fields of cultural criticism and cultural studies.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Think synoptically about the themes indicated;
- Write synoptically about the above, with appropriate skills in structuring an answer accordingly;
- Move from the general to the specific (and back again), in thought and expression, doing so with appropriate critical and theoretical resonances;
- Discern irony across diverse texts and contexts within literary and cultural tradition;
- Discern the principal critical and theoretical outlooks on irony, and the way they affirm or contradict each other;
- Draw together some of the main theoretical outlooks and understandings of Discourse as a category in Linguistics;
- Approach discourse as an important category that both bridges and distinguishes different approaches in Linguistics;
- Connect different approaches to the study of ancient and contemporary mythologies, doing so in the context of cultural criticism and cultural studies.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Because of the nature of the study-unit, reading lists are not being indicated here, but reading packs will be provided at the start of the second semester of each academic year.

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Seminar

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Examination (3 Hours) Yes 100%

LECTURER/S Mario Aquilina
Krista Bonello Rutter Giappone
Stella Borg Barthet
Ivan Callus
James David Corby
Maria Frendo
Sarah Grech
Odette Vassallo
Peter Vassallo

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
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