Global Capitalism and the Novel - EN722

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2021 to 2022.


This module examines the relationship between global capitalism and the novel since the 1980s. By arguing for the centrality of capital and class in the understanding of contemporary post-colonial literature, it reveals how a vibrant global realism has emerged that speaks to the new urban realities of massive rural migration to the city, exploding slum life, and more polarized class inequalities in the global South. It will explore how neoliberal globalization both makes possible and is critiqued by new realist narratives of abjection and resistance from across the global South, especially from India, Nigeria, South Africa, Martinique, Chile, and Egypt.


Contact hours

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

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods:

Two essays (3,000 words each) (45% each).
Seminar performance (10%)

Reassessment methods :
Like for Like

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List:

Mike Davis, 2005. Planet of Slums (Verso)
Arundhati Roy, 2015. Capitalism: A Ghost Story (Haymarket)
Rohinton Mistry, 1996 A Fine Balance (Faber)
K. Sello Duiker, 2000. Thirteen Cents (Ohio University Press)
Katherine Boo (2013), Behind the Beautiful Forevers (Portobello)

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 think critically about global capitalism and the novel
2 think historically about the development of the novel form
3 compare texts from different geographic locations
4 connect politics with aesthetics

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

1 apply the skills needed for academic study and enquiry
2 synthesise information from a number of sources in order to gain a coherent understanding of theory and practice;
3 frame oral criticism of creative work sensitively and constructively and to digest it to good effect
4 demonstrate powers of communication and the capacity to argue a point of view, orally and in written form, with clarity, organisation and cogency
5 demonstrate enhanced confidence in the efficient presentation of ideas designed to stimulate critical debate
6 demonstrate competence in the planning and execution of essays and project-work and in the conception, planning, execution and editing of individual creative work
7 demonstrate enhanced skills in collaborative work, including more finely tuned listening and questioning skills
8 understand, interrogate and apply a variety of theoretical positions and weigh the importance of alternative perspectives


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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