Postcolonial Writing - EN583

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
Canterbury Autumn
View Timetable
6 30 (15) DR B Abu Manneh




Not available as wild



The module raises students' awareness of contemporary issues in postcolonial writing, and the debates around them. This includes a selection of important postcolonial texts (which often happen to be major contemporary writing in English) and studies their narrative practice and their reading of contemporary culture. It focuses on issues such as the construction of historical narratives of nation, on identity and gender in the aftermath of globalisation and 'diaspora’, and on the problems associated with creating a discourse about these texts.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

Total contact hours: 30
Private study hours: 270
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

100% Coursework.

Two essays (3,000 words each) (90%)
Seminar performance (10%)

Indicative reading

Coetzee, J. M (2004). Waiting for the Barbarians. London: Vintage.
Gordimer, Nadine (1974). The Conservationist. Oxford: Cape.
Ondaatje, Michael (1992). The English Patient. London: Bloomsbury.
Rhys, Jean (1968). Wide Sargasso Sea. Harmondsworth: Penguin.
Rushdie, Salman (1982). Midnight's Children. London: Picador.
Thiong'o, Ngugi wa (1968). A Grain of Wheat. London: Heinemann

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 the major concerns of contemporary postcolonial writing
2. understand their historical and cultural contexts
3. understand the significance of how these issues are narrated and resolved

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

1. an ability to apply close reading techniques to a range of literary texts and to make complex comparisons between them.
2. development of the skills necessary for participating in group discussions and giving oral presentations.
3. an increased capacity for self-directed research and the ability to discuss, evaluate and creatively deploy secondary critical and theoretical perspectives.
4. an ability to construct original, articulate and well-substantiated arguments.

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