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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : English Literature

Undergraduate Course: Edinburgh in Fiction/Fiction in Edinburgh (ENLI10310)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course will examine the city in history as represented in fiction in the particular case of Edinburgh, from the historical fiction of Scott, Hogg and Stevenson to the genre fiction of the last two decades. It will examine the construction of the city in these texts as a site of legal, religious, economic and cultural discourse. The extent to which civic identity both contributes to and competes with national identity will be a central theme, as will the internal division of the city along lines of religion, gender, and, especially, class.
Course description This course will explore the unique status of Edinburgh in the literary imagination,
considering fictional versions of the city from the late eighteenth century to the
present. We will investigate how the qualities of Edinburgh are adapted to suit the
conventions of different literary genres, from the historical fiction of Scott, Hogg, and
Stevenson to Muriel Spark, Irvine Welsh, and Ian Rankin. We will examine how
Edinburgh functions in these texts as a cultural, religious, economic, and legal centre,
while also reflecting on its vexed relationship to the larger political entities of
Scotland and the United Kingdom. In this way, our course will trace how ideas of the
urban are discursively constructed, situating Edinburgh in relation to a broader
tradition of writing about 'the city' in literature. Mapping the varied topography of
Edinburgh in these texts and following its architectural, social, and political
transformations, we will assess how these authors approach recurring themes
relating to class, gender, sexuality, race, and faith.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: ( Literary Studies 1A (ENLI08020) AND Literary Studies 1B (ENLI08021) AND Literary Studies 2A: English Literature in the World, 1380-1788 (ENLI08024) AND Literary Studies 2B: English Literature in the World, post-1789 (ENLI08025)) OR ( English Literature 1 (ENLI08001) OR Scottish Literature 1 (ENLI08016) AND English Literature 2 (ENLI08003) OR Scottish Literature 2 (ENLI08004))
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Essential course texts.
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesA 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 cross disciplinary, "Freshman Seminars", civilisation or creative writing classes 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 four or more 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? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  15
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 196 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 100% coursework:
30% 2,000 word course essay
70% 3,000 word final essay
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. In addition to the skills training common to all English Literature Honours courses (essay-writing, independent reading, group discussion, oral presentation, small-group autonomous learning) this course aims to develop the student's understanding of
  2. (i) the ways in which urban space is constructed in the various discourses of the novel as a genre;
  3. (ii) the relation of civic identities to national identities as the novel brings them into relation;
  4. (iii) a broad understanding of the history of the novel in Scotland in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Reading List
James Hogg, The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner (Oxford World's Classics, 2010)
Jackie Kay, Trumpet (Picador Classics, 2016)
Eric Linklater, Magnus Merriman (Canongate, 2001)
Ian Rankin, The Falls (Orion, 2008)
Walter Scott, The Heart of Midlothian (Oxford World's Classics, 2008)
Muriel Spark, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (Penguin Modern Classics, 2000)
Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped (Oxford World's Classics, 2014)
Strachan, Zoe, ed. Out There: An Anthology of Scottish LGBT Writing (Freight Books, 2014)
Irvine Welsh, Trainspotting (Vintage, 1994)
Additional Information
Course URL
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Additional Class Delivery Information Seminar: 2 hour(s) per week for 10 week(s). Plus 1 hour a week for 10 weeks attendance at Autonomous Learning Group - times to be arranged
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Anna Girling
Course secretaryMr Callum Lennie
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