Universität Wien FIND

240054 PS Individuelle Schwerpunktsetzung - prüfungsimmament (4 ECTS) (2019S)

Continuous assessment of course work

Details

Language: English

Lecturers

Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Wednesday 20.03. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 27.03. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 03.04. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 10.04. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 08.05. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 15.05. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 22.05. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 29.05. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 05.06. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 12.06. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 19.06. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A
Wednesday 26.06. 14:00 - 16:00 Seminarraum 6 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-O1-22.A

Information

Aims, contents and method of the course

"We do it in the dark. Under the sheets. With a penlight. We wear sunglasses and a baseball hat at the bookstore. We have a 'special place' where we store them. Let’s face it: Not many folks are willing to publicly admit they love romance novels. Meanwhile, romance continues to be the bestselling fiction genre. Ever. So what’s with all the shame?" Wendell and Tan (2009)

Popular romance fiction is one of the least discussed genres of popular fiction and was even dismissed by feminist critics in the past, despite the fact that it is produced and read predominantly by women. From its beginnings as Gothic romance and historical romance it has developed into a heterogeneous genre with a large number of subgenres, such as gay romance, romantic suspense or contemporary romance. Although often referred to as ‘mommy porn’, ‘purple prose’ or romantic trash, recent feminist criticism perceives romance fiction as a site for negotiating gender roles and exploring female sexuality, while fans of the genre have long read romance fiction as narratives of female empowerment.

This class will approach popular romance fiction from a variety of different theoretical and methodological perspectives, namely genre criticism, feminist ethnography, and stylistic analyses of the language of romance fiction. We will explore how characteristic genre elements developed from a feminist perspective, how readers use the texts and which meanings they attribute to their reading practices, as well as how the language of romance fiction itself constructs a complex pattern of moments of normativity and empowerment.

We will discuss and compare these approaches and apply them to a selection of popular romance fiction texts, including extracts from formative texts that shaped the genre as it is understood today, such as Kathleen Woodiwiss’ historical romance The Flame and the Flower, as well as more recent texts such as Lord of Scoundrels and the contemporary Fifty Shades of Grey.

Assessment and permitted materials


Participation in discussions, preparing homework tasks (20%), Short written assignments (30%), Final written assignment (50%)

Students have to fulfil at least 50% of each individual requirement and score 60% overall to pass the course. Written assignments have to be submitted on time.

Plagiarism of any kind will result in a failing grade.

Regular attendance is expected (two absences max.).

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Participation in class including: active participation in discussions, preparing homework tasks (such as required reading of primary and secondary texts, preparation of questions etc.), short written assigments about student-selected texts throughout the semester

Final written assigment
Details will be discussed in the first session.

Examination topics

Reading list

1.1. Primary texts
Please buy a copy of Lord of Scoundrels (Loretta Chase, 1995) before the beginning of the course!
Selected extracts from other texts will be provided in class (The Flame and the Flower, Fifty Shades of Grey, etc.).
Student-selected texts will be used for individual assignments (details will be discussed in class).
1.2. Selection of secondary texts
Extracts from important secondary material will be provided in class.
Texts that will be used include:
Roach, Catherine M. Happily Ever After: The Romance Story in Popular Culture. 2016.
Radway, Janice. Reading the Romance. 1984.
Roberts, Thomas J. An Aesthetics of Junk Fiction. 1990.
Simpson, Paul. Stylistics : A resource book for students. 2004.
Sanger, Keith. The Language of Fiction. 1998.
Thurston, Carol. The Romance Revolution: Erotic Novels for Women and the Quest for a New Sexual identity. 1987.
Wendell and Tan, Beyond Heaving Bosoms: The Smart Bitches’ Guide to Romance Novels. 2009

Association in the course directory

Last modified: Mo 05.08.2019 17:08