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SEL3425 : American Modernist Literature (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Edward Clough
  • Owning School: English Lit, Language & Linguistics
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


•       To introduce students to US modernism
•       To examine a range of American literary responses to the period 1910-1945
•       To consider the specifics literary modernism in the US
•       To develop analytical skills by combining close reading with knowledge of historical contexts, theoretical debates and wider scholarship

Outline Of Syllabus

This module explores a range of American literary responses to what it meant to be ‘modern’ in the early 20th century. We will be looking at American modernist writers’ attitudes within political, social, and cultural contexts. This module aims to develop a vocabulary for critical analysis of both form and theme in the works studied. We will therefore consider the ways in which modernity is expressed through focused reading of a range of modernist writers. We will explore the ‘newness’ of much of the work that emerged in the period, its interest in experimentation, its narrative concerns, its expression of the uneven experiences of American modernity. We will also consider the ways in which these writers engage with key debates of the period.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:0011:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion176:0076:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading180:0080:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching112:0022:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity111:0011:00Study Groups and engagement.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures introduce students to knowledge outcomes and model critical approaches and readings. Seminars develop this knowledge and enable the practice of skills, namely close textual analysis, critical engagement and interpersonal communications. Study groups and engagement give students a chance to study independently with their peers and prepare for the seminars, and to expand their critical engagement skills. Structured research and reading activities allow concentrated and focused critical activity that builds knowledge and helps with assessment preparation. Drop-in surgeries provide tutorial support for assessments.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M40In course essay 1800 words
Essay2A60End of module essay 2200 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The mid-module assessment will ask students to concentrate on one particular text studied in the first half of the module and will be focused on close reading.

The end-of-module assessment will ask students to write an essay focused on one or two module texts.

There will be no separate assessment arrangements for Study Abroad students.

Reading Lists