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Contemporary Literature and Culture: Politics, Identity, Place (HUC3044)

30 credits

This module introduces you to a range of late-20C and 21C literary and cultural artefacts that raise urgent questions about art’s role in the conflicted political and ecological present. It looks at literary narratives that confront colonialism, capitalism and social inequality, experimental poems that undermine normative understandings of gender, sexuality and racial privilege, digital performances and hybrid media forms that challenge canonical concepts of ‘the literary’ and the practices by which it has been valued. During the module, you will compare and contrast canonical trends, artistic styles, ideologies and cultural tendencies in work published and performed in North America, Britain, Ireland, and South Africa. You will also explore how contemporary writing opens onto global concerns about identity, race, place and inheritance that subvert national literary identities and dominant and colonising cultural centres.