Universität Wien FIND

123041 PS Literary Studies / Proseminar Literature (2021W)

Contemporary Australian Literature - Key Issues and Debates

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 12 - Anglistik
Prüfungsimmanente Lehrveranstaltung


Hinweis: Ihr Anmeldezeitpunkt innerhalb der Frist hat keine Auswirkungen auf die Platzvergabe (kein "first come, first served").


max. 20 Teilnehmer*innen
Sprache: Englisch


Termine (iCal) - nächster Termin ist mit N markiert

Mittwoch 06.10. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 13.10. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 20.10. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 27.10. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 03.11. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 10.11. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 17.11. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 24.11. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 01.12. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 15.12. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 12.01. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 19.01. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital
Mittwoch 26.01. 12:15 - 13:45 Digital


Ziele, Inhalte und Methode der Lehrveranstaltung

For a long time, Australian national imaginaries have centred on the white, British male who has ‘tamed’ what Europeans have often perceived as an antipodean wilderness. Though these images have been highly problematic, considering that they have been based on the exclusion of many, for instance women and Indigenous Australians, they have also been immensely powerful. Over the last few decades, however, such representations have become increasingly fragile. After all, both the demographic diversification of Australia and the growing recognition of Australia’s colonial legacy have irrevocably changed the nation. Literature has responded to these changes by consciously laying out how Australia in the late twentieth and early twenty-first century has to be re-imagined.
In this Proseminar, we will be concerned with key issues and debates within contemporary Australian literature, such as the role of Australia’s Indigenous heritage and the impact of migration on the nation as well as shifting conceptions of gender and sexuality. To this end, we will read texts by Indigenous (in our case solely Aboriginal), Anglo-Celtic (i.e. white Australians of British/Irish descent) and ethnic minority writers (i.e. Australians who are neither of Indigenous nor Anglo-Celtic descent). In terms of genre, we will cover both prose (a short story and two novels) and drama.

Central questions addressed in this Proseminar will include:
1. What are ‘postcolonial literatures’ and why does contemporary Australian writing fall into this category?
2. What role does Indigenous writing play in contemporary Australian literature? How do Indigenous Australians and their concerns feature in Australian writing?
3. What role does writing by ethnic minority authors play in contemporary Australian literature?
4. How does contemporary Australian literature respond to and make sense of demographic changes?
5. How does contemporary writing from Australia engage with the issues of class, gender and sexuality?

Apart from addressing the primary texts in their form and content, this Proseminar is also designed to introduce you to basic academic skills, including academic writing, thesis formulation and the structuring of a term paper in literary studies.

Art der Leistungskontrolle und erlaubte Hilfsmittel

• Regular attendance (two sessions may be missed) and preparation of session material
• General participation in class, including individual contributions as well as work in groups
• Expert work on assigned readings: each student will be assigned to one source material of the syllabus and provide expert input in the respective session (experts are expected to provide everyone with a handout summarising the most important points)
• A written portfolio: This will consist of a short essay (deadline: 10 November 2021) and a paper proposal with annotated bibliography (deadline: 15 December 2021)
• A formal research paper of 3,500 words (+/- 10%): The deadline is 26 January 2022, 1.45 p.m.

Mindestanforderungen und Beurteilungsmaßstab

• Active participation and contributions in class (including your expert input in your respective session): 20%
• Written portfolio tasks: 20%
• Term paper: 60%

Points must be collected in all of these categories. Students must attain at least 60% to pass the course.

All written assignments will be checked for plagiarism, using Turnitin on moodle.

Marks in %:
1 (sehr gut): 90-100
2 (gut): 80-89
3 (befriedigend): 70-79
4 (genügend): 60-69
5 (nicht genügend): 0-59


Contents covered throughout the semester. This is an interactive course (“prüfungsimmanente Lehrveranstaltung”): in addition to completing both a research paper and a portfolio of written tasks (and handing in all assignments on time), participants are expected to read all set texts and actively participate in class throughout the semester. There will be no written exam.


Primary Texts
Jones, Gail. Five Bells. 2011. London: Vintage, 2012. (will be available on moodle)
Rankin, Scott, and Trevor Jamieson. Ngapartji Ngapartji. Namatjira & Ngapartji Ngapartji. Ed. Scott Rankin. Sydney: Currency P, 2012. 93-178. (accessible through u:search)
Tsiolkas, Christos. Loaded. 1995. London: Vintage, 2011. (Please buy this edition.)
Winch, Tara June. “Cloud Busting.” The Best Australian Stories 2005. Ed. Frank Moorhouse. Melbourne: Black Inc., 2005. 193-197. (will be available on moodle)

Secondary Texts
Casey, Maryrose. “Ngapartji Ngapartji: Telling Aboriginal Australian Stories.” Get Real: Documentary Theatre Past and Present. Ed. Alison Forsyth and Chris Megson. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009. 122-139.
Dixon, Robert. “Invitation to the Voyage: Reading Gail Jones’s Five Bells.” Journal of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature 12.3 (2012): 1-17.
Gilbert, Helen. “Indigeneity, Time and the Cosmopolitics of Postcolonial Belonging in the Atomic Age.” Interventions 15.2 (2013): 195-210.
Huggan, Graham. Australian Literature: Postcolonialism, Racism, Transnationalism. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2007.
Kušnír, Jaroslav. “Diasporic ‘Home’ and Transnational Identities in Gail Jones’s Five Bells.” Diasporic Constructions of Home and Belonging. Ed. Florian Kläger and Klaus Stierstorfer. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2015. 465-477.
Pons, Xavier. Messengers of Eros: Representations of Sex in Australian Writing. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009.
Vernay, Jean-François. “Only Disconnect - Canonizing Homonormative Values: Representation and the Paradox of Gayness in Christos Tsiolkas’s Loaded.” Antipodes 20.1 (2006): 41-45.

These texts, relevant excerpts from them or links to them will be made available on moodle at the beginning of term.

Zuordnung im Vorlesungsverzeichnis

Studium: BA 612; BEd 046 / 407
Code/Modul: BA10.1; BEd 08a.1, BEd 08b.2
Lehrinhalt: 12-3041

Letzte Änderung: Do 23.03.2023 00:18