Victorian to Modernist Literature

Kingston University

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Victorian to Modernist Literature

  • Host University

    Kingston University

  • Location

    London, England

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    Successful completion of introductory level English literature study

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Course Content:

    In this module texts are studied from the nineteenth to early twentieth centuries that
    register the ways in which Britain is transformed by the Industrial Revolution, and which
    give expression to fears about technology, social mobility and urban culture. We will
    consider literature of the period that questions and resists established theories of
    gendered identity, and which challenges the literary representation of sexuality, defying
    censorship in the process. Writers will be introduced who engage with contemporary
    debates about science, religion, the empire, and racial and national identity. A range of
    consciously modern texts will be encountered which dislocate and make new the
    reader?s experience by technical innovation and experiment.

    Students will study a range of Victorian and Modernist poetry selected from an anthology
    such as The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume 2. They will also encounter a
    diverse set of novels from the long nineteenth century, for example Oliver Twist (1838)
    to Tess of the d'Urbervilles (1891), in order to chart the development of literary
    representations of the fallen woman and to open up discussion about sexual morality
    and literary censorship. Fictional texts will also be studied in relation to non-fiction texts,
    for example Charlotte Bronte's Villette (1853) and Mary Seacole's mid-century autobiography, Wonderful Adventures of Mrs Seacole in Many Lands, in order to develop our understanding of topics such as female subjectivity and cultural perceptions of the
    woman writer.

    Having acquired a solid grounding in the conventions of nineteenth-century literature,
    students will then proceed to examine the works of a number of Modernist writers,
    including key novels of the early twentieth century and inter-war period which make a
    deliberate break from such conventions and through various forms of experimentation
    attempt to represent individual consciousness with greater authenticity. Texts might
    include Conrad's Lord Jim, Lawrence's, Sons and Lovers, Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as
    a Young Man and Woolf's Mrs Dalloway.

    Introductions: The Victorians and the Modernists, The Victorian City, The Victorian
    Nation: Crime & Punishment, Ideal and Transgressive Femininity, Ideal Masculinity &
    Victorian Medievalism, Constructing Female Sexuality, Constructing a National Identity,
    Changing Landscapes: England's Industrialisation, Changing Beliefs', Sexual Morality and
    the Victorian Novel, The Great Game, The End of Empire

    The Fin de Siècle: The Death of Victorianism , The Fin de Siecle: The birth of Modernism,
    The Fin de Siecle: The New Woman, The City and Urbanity in the Modern Short Story,
    Gender play in Modern Short Stories, Modernism and Modern Life: Modernist Poetry,
    Modernism and War: Modernist Poetry Part 2, The Gendered Modernist Life in Fiction,
    One Day in Dublin, Modernism and the First World War, Modernism and the Woman

    Lectures/workshops and seminars

    STUDY OPTION 1: a portfolio made up of four elements:
    20 weekly discussions points to be completed and signed on a weekly basis and then
    submitted with the portfolio (50-75 words each) 20%
    Close Reading 1 - to be submitted in TB1 - Week 10 (750 words) 20%
    Close Reading 2 - to be submitted in TB2 ? Week 9 (750words) 20%
    Essay (1500 words) 40%
    STUDY OPTION 2: portfolio (some elements as those for Study Option 1).
    STUDY OPTION 2: portfolio (some elements as those for Study Option 1).

    Study Option 1 = Whole Year
    Study Option 2 = Autumn
    Study Option 3 = Spring/summer

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.


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