Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Contemporary British Narrative

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




This unit seeks to examine the development of British fiction from 1960 to the present day.


The study-unit examines the development of the contemporary British novel in relation to the narrative tradition in Britain and to the theory and practice of postmodernist fiction. It is a survey course, and an attempt will therefore be made to avoid concentrating on ‘set texts’ and to encourage a more varied and eclectic reading of contemporary British fiction. Students will be encouraged to read widely in an effort to identify recurrent trends and attributes within contemporary British novels. Major authors whose work will be reviewed include Peter Ackroyd, Martin Amis, Julian Barnes, A. S. Byatt, Angela Carter, Ian McEwan, Kazuo Ishiguro, David Mitchell, Salman Rushdie, Graham Swift, Irvine Welsh and Jeanette Winterson.

Reading List

- Alexander, Marguerite, Flights from Realism: Themes and Strategies in Postmodernist British Fiction (London: Arnold, 1990).
- Bentley, Nick, British Fiction of the 1990s (London: Routledge, 2005).
- Bradford, Richard, The Novel Now (Malden, MA and Oxford: Blackwell, 2007).
- English, James F., A Concise Companion to Contemporary British Fiction (Malden: Blackwell, 2006).
- Gasiorek, Andrzej, Post-War British Fiction: Realism and After (London: Arnold, 1995).
- Head, Dominic, Modern British Fiction, 1950-2000 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002).
- Hutcheon, Linda, A Poetics of Postmodernism: History, Theory, Fiction (London: Routledge, 1988).
- Lee, Alison, Realism and Power: Postmodern British Fiction (London: Routledge, 1990).
- McHale, Brian, Postmodernist Fiction (London: Methuen, 1987).
- Margaret Scanlon, Traces of Another Time: History and Politics in Postwar British Fiction (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1990).
- Philip Tew, ed., The Contemporary British Novel, 2nd edn (London: Continuum, 2007).


Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Online Examination (3 Hours) SEM2 Yes 100%

LECTURER/S Ivan Callus

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