Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


CODE ENG5069

 
TITLE Criticism Today: In Theory & Practice - An Advanced Introduction

 
LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course

 
ECTS CREDITS 5

 
DEPARTMENT English

 
DESCRIPTION This study-unit will acquaint students with current trends and recent developments in literary theory and criticism. The focus will be both theoretical and methodological, offering students guidance as to how an understanding of how criticism is intellectually framed and practised can be incorporated into their own critical approach to literature and the question of the literary.

Topics to be looked at in depth may include the 'post-literary', the notion of 'countertextuality', non-textual literature and transformations of the textual, the nature and scope of criticism today, the notion of critical distance in contemporary thought and practice, criticism, politics and contemporaneity, and developments in digital literature and criticism. Students will be given a unique insight into the academic journal CounterText: A Journal for the Study of the Post-Literary, edited by Prof. Callus and Dr Corby.

Study-Unit Aims:

- To introduce postgraduates to the reach and range of contemporary critical reflection upon the nature of the literary.
- To accustom postgraduates to intensive seminar discussion of major texts in literary scholarship today.
- To equip postgraduates with a range of critical tools and methodologies in contemporary critical analysis and textual interpretation.
- To provide students with a multifaceted view of literature and literariness.
- To acquaint students with current trends in literary theory and criticism.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- identify important trends in contemporary literary criticism and theory.
- analyse and compare the implications of at least three different contemporary approaches to literature and criticism.
- make an informed decision about which contemporary critical methodology to deploy in relation to a literary text.
- discuss from a theoretical perspective the contemporary travails and transformations of literature and the literary.
- identify and discuss contemporary conceptions of criticism and critique.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- write a critical disquisition on the nature of the literary in contemporary thought.
- apply in their written work particular contemporary critical approaches to literature.
- evaluate competing critical judgements, having had experience of this throughout the study-unit.
- write clearly, stylishly and persuasively, having been guided in this throughout the study-unit.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

A reading pack will be made available at the start of the study-unit, but the following texts are likely to prove particularly useful.

Main Texts:

- Andrew Bennett and Nicholas Royle, An Introduction to Literature, Criticism and Theory (Edinburgh: Pearson, 2009).
- Elizabeth B. Bissell, The Question of Literature: The Place of the Literary in Contemporary Theory (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002).
- Jane Elliot and Derek Attridge, eds., Theory after 'Theory' (London: Routledge, 2011).
- Marjorie Garber, The Use and Abuse of Literature (New York: Anchor Books, 2011).
- Jean-Michel Rabaté, Crimes of the Future: Theory and its Global Reproduction (New York: Bloomsbury, 2014).
- Calvin Thomas, Ten Lessons in Theory: An Introduction to Theoretical Writing (New York: Bloomsbury, 2013).

Supplementary Reading:

- Marjorie Garber, The Use and Abuse of Literature (New York: Anchor Books, 2011).
- Jean-Michel Rabaté, Crimes of the Future: Theory and its Global Reproduction (New York: Bloomsbury, 2014).

 
STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Tutorial

 
METHOD OF ASSESSMENT
Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment SEM2 Yes 100%

 
LECTURER/S Ivan Callus
James David Corby

 
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 description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.

https://www.um.edu.mt/course/studyunit