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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : European Languages and Cultures - Common Courses

Undergraduate Course: Comparative Literature in a European and Global Perspective (ELCC10022)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryAt the crossroads of new academic trends and exciting critical debates in research areas such as Postcolonial Studies, World Literature or Translation Studies, this team-taught course will introduce students to the theory and practice of Comparative Literature in its twenty-first century context. We will be comparing seminal works originally published in English, Spanish, Italian, French, German, Russian and Japanese, via a series of key transversal themes. All texts studied will be available in English translation.
Course description Finding its roots in nineteenth century Europe, Comparative Literature has been marked by a recurring institutional instability. This discipline aiming to bridge the gap between literary, cultural and linguistic traditions is currently being reshaped by a series of major global phenomena in academia and beyond (decolonization, multilingualism, etc.). Acknowledging its European origins but moving away from a Euro-centric perspective, the course will explore and compare seminal works originally published in English, Spanish, Italian, French, German, Russian and Japanese, via a series of key transversal themes: the representation of cities across various media, between reality and fiction; the afterlives of iconic characters such as Don Quixote; the translation and transnational reception of literary works, genres (e.g. novel, autobiography, etc.) and styles; writing the self and identities between languages and cultures; historical, national and political stereotypes and archetypes, between the universal and the particular. As part of the course, we will be discussing trailblazing authors such as Miguel de Cervantes, Tommaso Campanella, Natsume Soseki, Kobo Abe, Italo Calvino, Vladimir Nabokov and Salman Rushdie, who all contribute to, and question, modernity understood in its broadest sense. All texts studied will be available in English, although students will be encouraged to read them in the original languages whenever possible. For their oral presentation and their essay, students will be expected to develop a comparative analysis of the literary works discussed, taking into account their historical, cultural and linguistic context, but also their genre and formal features (structure, style, tone, etc.). All texts studied will be available in English, although students will be encouraged to read them in the original languages whenever possible. Students will also be expected to work in cross-linguistic autonomous learning groups.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesThe equivalent of at least two years of study at University level of any European literature, including English Literature.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Summative Assessment Hours 4, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 172 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 30% for the pair podcast; 70% for end of course essay (2500 words)
Feedback Formal feedback will be of two types:

1) Each group will be sent comprehensive feedback on their podcast (submitted on Learn), particularly designed to help the students to plan for their essay, which will also adopt a comparative structure.
2) Feedback will be given on the essay, in Turnitin.
Informal oral feedback will also be given in seminars, as the students engage in small group work and class discussion, and during the conclusion/essay preparation class.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Compare and contrast literary works from different linguistic traditions and from different periods
  2. Analyse critically literary texts originally written in different languages and locate them in their historical, socio-cultural and artistic context
  3. Reflect critically on a variety of concepts of Comparative Literature and their development over time
Reading List
Can be found on Learn.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1) An ability to compare and contrast literary works from different cultural traditions.

2) The ability to analyse critically a variety of texts by making reference to their form and content, including their national, historical, cultural, aesthetic and linguistic background.

3) Presentational and academic writing skills.
KeywordsComparative Literature,Artistic traditions and languages from the 17th to the 21st century
Course organiserDr Fabien Arribert-Narce
Tel: (0131 6)50 8414
Course secretaryMrs Vivien MacNish Porter
Tel: (0131 6)50 3528
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