Undergraduate Course: Cities of Words: 20th Century Urban America (ENLI10096)
|School||School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||This course aims to examine the representation of urban space in twentieth-century American writing. It covers a broad selection of texts in a variety of genres ¿ the novel, poetry, journalism, short stories ¿ and complements these with a consideration of various theoretical perspectives on the relationship between literary aesthetics and geography. In particular we look at the changing ways that New York and Los Angeles have been represented, thinking about social and political issues of immigration and race relations, the commodification of culture, and urban detection, as well as about formal considerations of how the experience of city spaces are textually conveyed. The course promotes students¿ abilities both to engage critically with a text and to think conceptually about the ways in which US cities function as part of modern culture.
This course enables students to explore a variety of representations of modern urban United States, focusing
specifically at New York and Los Angeles. We'll be looking a number of different genres of writing -
fiction, poetry, travel narrative, screenplay
to consider the ways in which the city has been depicted in American literary culture. The relationship between aesthetics and urban geography will also be examined through
reading a number of key theorists alongside the primary texts. The course encourages both close critical engagement and conceptual thinking about the ways in which city spaces function as part of modern culture.
Information for Visiting Students
|Pre-requisites|| A MINIMUM of 4 college/university level literature courses at grade B or above (should include no more than one introductory level literature course). Related courses such as civilisation or other interdisciplinary classes, Freshman Year Seminars or composition/creative writing classes/workshops are not considered for admission to this course. Applicants should also note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission. In making admissions decisions preference will be given to students who achieve above the minimum requirement with the typical visiting student admitted to this course having 4 literature classes at grade A.
** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
|High Demand Course?
Course Delivery Information
|Not being delivered|
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- demonstrate their understanding of critical issues in relation to the city as a crucial site in the production of US literature and American modernity.
- speak and write fluently about these issues in relation to the primary texts, and the socio-historical contexts in which they are embedded.
- apply a range of relevant literary theories, such as spatial theory, African-American literary criticism, and postmodernism, to the primary texts on the course, and evaluate these theories in relation to each other.
- apply a range of secondary criticism to the primary texts on the course, and evaluate them in relation to their own readings.
- further improve their abilities in areas fundamental to the study of English literature at Honours level: essay writing, independent reading, critical thinking, class discussion, oral presentation of information, and the ability to learn autonomously in small groups.
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
||Numbers are limited and students taking degrees not involving English or Scottish literature need the written approval of the head of English Literature
|Additional Class Delivery Information
||Seminar: 2 hour(s) per week for 10 week(s): plus 1 hour per week for 10 weeks - Autonomous Learning Group at time to be arranged.
|Course organiser||Dr Andrew Taylor
Tel: (1031 6)50 4584
|Course secretary||Mr Michael Butler
Tel: (0131 6)51 1513