Human to Posthuman: 20th Century Literature
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This research-intensive university in north-western Sydney offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. With over 30,000 current students, Macquarie has a strong reputation for welcoming international students and embracing flexible and convenient study options, including its partnership with Open Universities Australia.
At the completion of this subject students will be able to:
- Demonstrate critical and analytical reading strategies, interpretive analysis, scholarly research, and effective communication, with particular application to the field of modernist and postmodernist studies in English
- Identify, evaluate and apply principles of modernism and postmodernism to different literary modes, narrative and non-narrative
- Display creative thinking and construct cohesive arguments
- Consider how historical and theoretical propositions of modernism have shaped the reception and reproduction of 20th-century art more broadly
- Engage in informed critical discussion on unit content with peers and teachers, consider and assess others’ points of view, and to argue a critical position
- Week 1 Introduction to 20th-cent literature
- Week 2 W. B. Yeats and mythology
- Week 3 James Joyce: youth & subjectivity
- Week 4 J. M. Synge and Oedipal modernism
- Week 5 Virginia Woolf and non-human time
- Week 6 Angry Penguins: Aust mod
- Week 7 Background to postmodern- ism / late modernism
- Week 8 Flannery O’Connor: God’s absence
- Week 9 Gerald Murnane: inhuman landscapes
- Week 10 Aboriginal activist poetry
- Week 11 Les Murray: the human in nature
- Week 12 J. M. Coetzee & posthuman politics
- Week 13 Blasted and dehumanisation
You must have successfully completed the following subject(s) before starting this subject:
ENGX1002 and 20cp at 2000 level
- OtherDetails -
Students who have an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion under Macquarie University's Academic Progression Policy are not permitted to enrol in OUA units offered by Macquarie University. Students with an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion who have enrolled in units through OUA will be withdrawn.
This unit looks at a range of texts across the 20th century, from modernism to postmodernism and late modernism. The governing theme for the unit is what it means to be human, raising questions about memory, identity, agency, empathy, care and ethical responsibility. Topics to be discussed within these lines of enquiry include the death of God, the crisis of history, war and its aftermath, and changing gender dynamics. The range of Australian and international authors to be studied includes James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, Flannery O’Connor, Gerald Murnane, J. M. Coetzee and Sarah Kane.
- Participatory task (20%)
- Short essay (1,200 words) (30%)
- Research essay 2,500 words (50%)