Literature, Culture and Society

Dit vak wordt in het Engels aangeboden. Omschrijvingen kunnen daardoor mogelijk alleen in het Engels worden weergegeven.

Doel vak

This course trains students in the close reading of, and critical
reflection on, literary and critical texts from a variety of national,
cultural and historical backgrounds, and from diverse disciplinary
angles. Students learn about social and academic debates regarding the
relationship between literature and society. Students practice with
written and verbal presentations of their own research. Students learn
how to provide their peers with constructive feedback.

Inhoud vak

For centuries, literary and other cultural texts have changed the way
people think and look at the world. They reveal social injustices and
societal ills, offering ideas and ammunition for social change, thereby
helping people to imagine different, better realities. A single text may
trigger an individual’s struggle for emancipation, but also that of a
group or a nation. This course will explore the important ways in which
literary texts have contributed to societal change and have liberated
people throughout the centuries up to the present.

The texts we discuss have instigated individual readers as well as
collectivities to discover and become aware of injustices, unfairness
and abuse. This course analyzes that process, using the following
questions as leading threads in the discussions: Which rhetorical
strategies employed in the texts evoke the readers’ empathy and possible
agency? How do the texts simultaneously assist in emboldening the
reader, strengthening an emerging community, and gaining acceptance from
a wider audience? In which way do they balance realities that are
already being lived and imagined possibilities that have yet to
materialize? How do they interact with other expressions of the struggle
for emancipation, by way of imitation, opposition, appropriation? And,
finally, how do they function within the communities that they have
helped found, how are they remembered, recreated, redefined, and to
which purposes?


Students and instructor meet three times per week:
Lectures, 1 x 2 hours per week. Seminar meetings, 2 x 2 hours per week


Participation 30% (including class participation; group presentation;
Canvas posts)
Written exam 40%
Final report 30%
Students will only receive credits for the course if their grade for the
written exam is 5.5 or higher. They are not allowed to compensate an
exam grade that is below 5.5 with other partial grades.

Vereiste voorkennis

Students must also take (or have taken) part in one of two other
modules: either (1) “Literary Theory”; or (2) “Transatlantic Travel
Writing.” No exceptions will be made.


Primary and secondary sources; to be announced on Canvas.


First year students of Literature & Society: English; exchange students.

Overige informatie

This course is obligatory in the first year. Attendance required: 80%
(including lectures, seminars, practicums). Students who miss more than
20% will not receive credits for the course.

Afwijkende intekenprocedure

Sign up procedure: There is a slightly different enrollment procedure for this module. The standard procedure of the Faculty of Humanities has students sign up for (i) the module, (ii) the form of tuition (lecture and/or preferred seminar group), and (iii) the exam. However, for this module the instructor will assign the students to the seminar groups. Therefore, students should sign up for (i) the module, (ii) the lectures, and (iii) the exam, but not for the seminar groups.

Aanbevolen voorkennis

The history and literature of social movements such as feminism and the
abolitionist and anti-apartheid movements.

Algemene informatie

Vakcode L_ALBALES101
Studiepunten 6 EC
Periode P1
Vakniveau 100
Onderwijstaal Engels
Faculteit Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen
Vakcoördinator dr. A.S. Raghunath
Examinator dr. A.S. Raghunath
Docenten dr. A.S. Raghunath

Praktische informatie

Voor dit vak moet je zelf intekenen.

Voor dit vak kun je last-minute intekenen.

Werkvormen Hoorcollege, Werkcollege*, Practicum

*Voor deze werkvorm kun je geen groep kiezen, je wordt hiervoor ingedeeld.


Dit vak is ook toegankelijk als: