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124184 VK BEd 08b.3: VK Cultural Studies for Language Teachers (2021W)

Madness as Cultural Discourse: Western Exclusionary Practices, Cultural Discontent & Civil Disobedience

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 12 - Anglistik
Continuous assessment of course work
MIXED

Registration/Deregistration

Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).

Details

max. 23 participants
Language: English

Lecturers

Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

This seminar will be held ONSITE !!!

In case of Covid-19 restrictions the seminar will be held via Zoom and/or BBB (link via moodle). In such a case you will be informed by the lecturer in time!!!

Wednesday 13.10. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 20.10. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 27.10. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 03.11. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 10.11. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 17.11. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 24.11. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 01.12. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 15.12. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 12.01. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 19.01. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Wednesday 26.01. 14:30 - 16:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19

Information

Aims, contents and method of the course

This course will consider how “madness” works as a discourse which has recurrently been analyzed in groundbreaking CS-theories. We will explore how “madness” is represented and constructed in a variety of cultural “texts” and practices (e.g. film, literature, digital media, performance art, subculture phenomena).

The basis of the course form excerpts from Foucault’s groundbreaking study Madness and Civilisation (1961) which decisively inspired cultural theorists of the late 20th cent (see below). Foucault wanted to penetrate beneath the surface of society to find the cultural, intellectual and economic structures that dictate how madness is constructed. His outline of the evolution of “madness” in changing patterns of knowledge of the Renaissance, Age of Reason and Modernity shows how Western culture has experienced, addressed and tried to redress madness as we look at the historical changes in the depiction of unreason and mental illness, doctors and the medical profession, mental patients, and mental institutions - both in documentary and fictional representation.

Our discussion will center upon cultural constructions of and anxieties about deformity, anomaly and aberration resulting in discourses of fear and Othering, but also in disruptive counter-discourses of cultural discontent and defiant civil disobedience. We will encounter the differences and parallels illustrating how regimes of truth from 17th to 20th cents expelled and confined “the mad” along with prostitutes, vagrants, blasphemers, homosexuals, female artists, “savages” etc. – subjects who are constructed as dangerous and deviant Others.
This in turn will prompt questions about gender, sex, “race” and class, about power, authority and control, about definitions of “normal” behavior and social happiness, and about the integrity and disintegration of the self and the body. Here theories by e.g. Derrida, Butler, Greenblatt, Said, Hall, Showalter, Kristeva etc. will show us how Foucault’s concepts were developed and open new dimensions in cultural and media analysis.
Our study of fictional and cultural representations will concentrate on a thematic and a chronological contextualization. We will trace the historical changes of representations of madness by comparing conceptions of 17th, 19th, 20th cents and analyze the decades of the late 20th cent where madness politicized, poetically idealized and deconstructed in new terms - as last refuge from a hostile & alienating capitalist system of commodification and colonization of all sorts. In this context we will explore whether outcast minds and bodies can re-mould institutional settings of confinement and/or re-mould themselves in alternative spaces of liberation.

Assessment and permitted materials

GENERAL INFO ( --> specified info in class)

Plus BA / Bachelor paper:
active participation = 20%;
class portfolio + BA paper = 50%;
oral presentation/discussion = 30%;

Minus BA paper:
active participation = 20%;
class portfolio + final essay= 50%;
oral presentation/discussion = 30%

In each case, all three components need to be passed in order to pass the whole class
Max. 100%; Pass rate: 60%

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Examination topics

Detailed info during the semester & on Moodle.

Reading list

Tentative List of Literature / Film /Media (i.e. will be slightly modified & shortened until end of September 2021)_

Melancholy & Madness in the Shakesperian Era
Alice - Through the Looking Glass. (Carroll, 1864)
Dracula (Stoker, 1898) + development 20th & 21st cents
The Yellow Wallpaper (Perkins, Gilmanm 1892)
Excerpts from texts/essays by Virginia Woolf

Heart of Darkness (Conrad, 1899)
Howl. (Ginsberg, 1958)
Slaughterhouse 5 (Vonnegut,1969)
Surfacing (Atwood, 1973)

Girl, Interrupted (Kaysen 1993 /Mangold 1999)
Fight Club (Palahniuk, 1994/ Fincher, 1999)
Black Swan (Aronovsky, 2010)
Full of Fire (The Knife, 2013 – music video/film)

Theoretical texts on madness/culture/gender will be provided on moodle

Association in the course directory

Studium: BEd 046/407
Code/Modul: BEd 08b.3
Lehrinhalt: 12-4686

Last modified: Tu 21.09.2021 13:28