ML3NCEF-19th Century European Novel

Module Provider: Modern Languages
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Veronica Heath


Summary module description:

The aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of a range of nineteenth-century European fiction through the study of a representative selection of major 19th-century narrative texts from France, Germany, Italy and Spain, and, in some cases, of their cinematic adaptations. The issues that will be explored may include: the relationship between theory and practice, including its role in the creation or renewal of genres, the relationship between artists and readers, romantic subjectivity, the crisis of the artist, the relationship between fiction and ‘reality’, narrative voice, genre, and representation of women. Comparisons will be made between the traditions of different European literatures and, where relevant, between nineteenth-century fictions and their cinematic adaptations.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that students will be able to:
- demonstrate a critical and comparative understanding of the works studied;
- analyse the literary and (where relevant) cinematic characteristics of the works studied;
- recognise, analyse and evaluate the relationship between the works and the cultures and societies that produced them;
- recognise similarities and differences between the texts studied;
- engage critically with the ideas presented in lectures and secondary reading;
- organise and articulate a coherent and justified written argument, demonstrating an ability to integrate interpretation with evidence.

Additional outcomes:
This module also aims to encourage the development of oral communication skills and pair/group presentation skills, as well as enabling students to develop their reading, analytical and interpretative skills in relation to literary and other texts.

Outline content:
The module introduces students to the close study of a selection of 19th-century European fiction, in relation to the contexts in which it was written and circulated, and to the theories of authors and critics. Comparisons will be made between the works of different national cultures. The texts selected for study, which may vary from year to year, may include: Constant, 'Adolphe'; Flaubert, 'A Simple Heart' ('Un Coeur simple'); Zola, 'Thérèse Raquin'; Fontane, 'Effi Briest'; Storm, 'The Dykemaster' ('Der Schimmelreiter'); Manzoni, 'The Betrothed' ('I promessi sposi'); Verga, 'Mastro Don Guesualdo' or 'The House by the Medlar Tree' ('I Malavoglia'); Pérez Galdós, 'Tristana'; Zorrilla, 'Don Juan Tenorio'.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
There will be 30 sessions. These will include lectures, seminar work and discussion. Students will be expected to
- Absorb information given in a lecture format, as well as engage in secondary reading;
- Prepare (singly or in groups) extracts from the set texts to be discussed in seminar;
- Prepare texts for discussion.
The range, length and extent of such activities will vary as appropriate to the nature of the material.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 4 4
Seminars 11 11
Guided independent study 85 83 2
Total hours by term 100.00 98.00 2.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 60
Written assignment including essay 40

Other information on summative assessment:
Two assignments (either essay or commentary) will be required.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    2 hours

    Requirements for a pass:

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in August/September (if there is overall failure at Finals). Coursework will be carried forward if it bears a confirmed mark of 40% or more. Otherwise it must be resubmitted by 1PM on the third Friday of August or, if the University is closed on the third Friday of August, at 1PM on the next working day thereafter.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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