Universität Wien FIND

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Achtung! Das Lehrangebot ist noch nicht vollständig und wird bis Semesterbeginn laufend ergänzt.

127010 KO Critical Readings in Literature (2020S)

Literary genres as social institutions: British fiction and literary conventions

6.00 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 serve").


max. 30 Teilnehmer*innen
Sprache: Englisch


Termine (iCal) - nächster Termin ist mit N markiert

This is a semi-blocked course: each week consists in a double session, which will last three hours exactly (starting and finishing on time), and the course is only taught from the beginning of the semester to the end of April (i.e. 7 sessions).

The course will take place from 5 to 8 pm.

An additional online session (via Moodle) will take place on Tuesday 5th May.

Dienstag 03.03. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Dienstag 10.03. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Dienstag 17.03. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Dienstag 24.03. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Dienstag 31.03. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Dienstag 21.04. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock
Dienstag 28.04. 16:45 - 20:00 Hörsaal 9 Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1 1.Stock


Ziele, Inhalte und Methode der Lehrveranstaltung

In this course, we will discuss British fiction across the centuries and focus on literary genres ‘as social institutions’, a metaphor developed by genre theorist David Fishelov and drawn from René Welleck and Austin Warren’s Theory of Literature: “one can work through, express oneself through, existing institutions, create new ones, or get on, so far as possible, without sharing in politics or rituals; one can also join, but then reshape institutions”. By examining several key texts of different genres of fiction, we will look at generic conventions not as “fixed procedures imposed by impersonal tradition”, but as “constitutive and enabling” as Paul Alpers phrases it, that is to say, as providing flexibility to both preserve and transform aspects of the genre. Like social institutions, genres are not static and inflexible, but rather survive through the constant reshaping of their conventions by individuals – and this is what we will examine together by analysing texts belonging to various types of British fiction, whether it is Elizabethan theatre, science-fiction, political drama, Romantic poetry, Gothic fiction, farcical comedy, or detective fiction.

This course builds on the knowledge students gained in the introductory lectures. Participants taking this course should be familiar with the basics of literary analysis (narrative techniques, genre, point of view, etc.). The course will enable participants to develop their practical skills in the critical analysis and interpretation of literary texts (drama, poetry and narrative fiction), and to deepen their knowledge of concepts and terminology necessary to the study of literary texts.

Art der Leistungskontrolle und erlaubte Hilfsmittel

Regular attendance (you may miss a maximum of one double-session or two half-sessions without justification) and active participation in classroom discussion and group work; regular preparation of assigned reading material; active in expert team providing input for one session in the term; portfolio of written tasks (consisting in a critical review, a creative writing piece or a book review, and a short close reading essay at the end of term).

Mindestanforderungen und Beurteilungsmaßstab

- Active participation in classroom discussion: 20%
- Oral task – expert input during one session: 20%
- Portfolio of written tasks (critical review, creative writing or book review, and short close reading essay): 60%

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

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 a portfolio of written tasks as well as handing in 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:
1) William Shakespeare, Othello (1603)
2) Harold Pinter, One for the Road (1984, one-act play)
3) Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest (1895)
4) Selected poems (Romanticism, Victorian Poetry, Modernism) will be provided on Moodle in due time
5) Mary Shelley, Frankenstein (1818)
6) Wilkie Collins, The Moonstone (1868)
7) H.G. Wells, War of the Worlds (1897)

The primary texts will be studied in the order provided here. No precise edition is required, but you will need to be able to navigate easily from chapter to chapter or scene to scene in class.

Secondary literature: excerpts will be provided in digital form on Moodle.

Zuordnung im Vorlesungsverzeichnis

Studium: BA 612; BEd 046/407
Code/Modul: BA08.3; BEd Modul 10
Lehrinhalt: 12-3000

Letzte Änderung: Mo 07.09.2020 15:20