Mapping Identities - EN338

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
Canterbury Spring
View Timetable
4 30 (15) DR J Virtanen




Not available as wild



Mapping Identities will introduce students to a sample of the myriad ways writers of different backgrounds and time periods have confronted identity. Whether complicit in the construction of mainstream understandings of social categories (such as race, class, gender, or sexuality), or engaged in their deconstruction, literary authors have long been instrumental in establishing and/or contesting our understanding of the subject and that subject's relationship to place. Mapping identity through place, this course will also invite students to think about that relationship between identity and the environments in which identities are forged or articulated.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

This module will be taught through lectures and seminars.

Contact hours: 40
Private Study Hours: 260
Total Study Hours: 300

Method of assessment

Assignment 1 (20%): close reading (1,500 words)
Assignment 2 (20%): Students will give a seminar presentation on a text of their choice. Based on this, they will submit a piece of written work for assessment, which may be reflective.
Assignment 3 (30%): Research Essay (2,500 words)

Exam (30%): 2 hours

Indicative reading

Bauman, Zygmunt, 2004. Identity. Polity Press
Dangarembga, Tsitsi.1988. Nervous Conditions. Ayebia Clarke edition (2004).
Equiano, Olaudah. 1789. The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano (extracts)
Kempe, Margery, 1430s. The Book of Margery Kempe (extracts)
Hurston, Zora Neale. 1937. Their Eyes Were Watching God. Virago edition (1986).
Wordsworth, William. 1850. The Prelude (extracts)

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 identify specific thematic concerns related to social, economic, spiritual, sexual, and biological categories of identity, related terminology, and the potential complexities of a range of literary approaches;
2 understand the relationship between identity and material, psychological, and social conditions;
3 understand the historical and cultural specificity of textual forms addressed to a range of categories of identity;
4 write critically about identities and the relationships between text, subject, and space.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 identify and apply strategies of reading relevant to the material they encounter;
2 apply close reading techniques to a range of literary texts, and to make complex comparisons between them;
3 effectively communicate orally;
4 begin self-directed research and discuss, evaluate, and creatively deploy secondary critical and theoretical perspectives;
5 construct original, articulate, and well-substantiated arguments;
6 manage their time and workload effectively.

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