English and American Literature 

(2018 Entry)

BA (Hons)

Keele’s programme was a national first in the UK in 2001, and is now widely recognised as the leading course of its type in the country.

 

Single Honours
Study abroad
Learn a language
International year
3 years/ 4 years with international year

UCAS code: TQ73

View entry requirements

Course Overview

English and American Literature

School link:
School of Humanities

One of the attractions of studying literature at Keele is our international focus: tutors and students know that there are fascinating connections to be explored between different national literatures. This course is a good example of our international outlook.

The programme combines the distinctive strengths of English and American Studies, and looks at the contrasts and connections between two major national literary traditions. You’ll develop your critical arguments and technical analysis as you engage imaginatively and intellectually with literary texts from medieval literature to contemporary American graphic novels. You’ll examine the full chronological range of English and American literature, considering their direct intersections from the nineteenth century onwards. You can spend a semester at a partner university abroad – which might include the USA, Australia, the Netherlands or Canada.

What will this mean for my future?

One of the attractions of studying literature at Keele is our international focus: tutors and students know that there are fascinating connections to be explored between different national literatures. This course is a good example of our international outlook.

The programme combines the distinctive strengths of English and American Studies, and looks at the contrasts and connections between two major national literary traditions. You’ll develop your critical arguments and technical analysis as you engage imaginatively and intellectually with literary texts from medieval literature to contemporary American graphic novels. You’ll examine the full chronological range of English and American literature, considering their direct intersections from the nineteenth century onwards. You can spend a semester at a partner university abroad – which might include the USA, Australia, the Netherlands or Canada.

Indicative modules

First year

  • Reading Literature
  • Starting Out: An Introduction to American Literature
  • Becoming a Critic
  • Transatlantic Gothic: Studies in 19th Century English and American Literatures

Second year

  • The Romance of Fiction: History and Society in 19th Century American Literature
  • From Modernity to Counterculture: Literature and Social Criticism in 20th Century American Literature
  • Romanticisms
  • Post-War British Fiction and Poetry

Third year

  • Dissertation
  • Contemporary British Fiction
  • High Culture: Drink, Drugs and the American Dream
  • Words and Pictures: the Contemporary American Graphic Novel
  • Writingscapes

Course structure

Our degree courses are organised into modules. Each module is usually a self-contained unit of study and each is usually assessed separately with the award of credits on the basis of 1 credit = 10 hours of student effort.  An outline of the structure of the programme is provided in the tables below.

There are three types of module delivered as part of this programme. They are:

  • Compulsory modules – a module that you are required to study on this course;
  • Optional modules – these allow you some limited choice of what to study from a list of modules;
  • Elective modules – a free choice of modules that count towards the overall credit requirement but not the number of subject-related credits.

Modules Summary

A summary of the credit requirements per year is as follows, with a minimum of 90 subject credits (compulsory plus optional) required for each year. [Example credit split in the table below]

 

Year

Compulsory

Optional

Electives

 

Min

Max

Min

Max

1

60

30

60

0

30

2

30

60

90

0

30

3

45

45

75

0

30

Modules - Year One

Year 1 (Level 4)

Year 1 (Level 4)

In Year 1 (Level 4), all students take two core modules in each semester, plus two more optional modules, giving a 90 credit minimum in English and American Literature-approved modules. Students must choose further modules, which can but need not include English and American Literature optional modules.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Reading Literature

15

Telling Tales

15

Starting Out: An Introduction to American Literature

15

Playing Parts

15

Composition

15

New York, New York

15

Transatlantic Gothic: Studies in Nineteenth- Century English and American Literatures

15

Poetry through Practice

15

   

Fiction through Practice

15

   

A Beginner’s Guide to Contemporary America

15

 

Modules - Year Two

Year 2 (Level 5)

In Year 2 (Level 5), students take one compulsory and two optional modules in each semester (optional modules may also be taken as electives), making a minimum of 90 English and American Literature-approved credits for the year. Students must choose further modules, which can but need not include English and American Literature optional modules.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

From Modernity to Counterculture: Literature and Social Criticism in Twentieth-Century American Literature

15

Victorian Performances

15

The Romance of Fiction: History and Society in Nineteenth Century American Literature

15

The Renaissance: Shakespeare and Beyond

15

   

Writing Genre and Mode

15

   

Alfred Hitchcock’s America

15

   

The Detective and the American City

15

   

Creative Writing: Poetry and Prose

15

   

Adaptation

15

   

Twentieth-Century British Fiction and Poetry

15

   

Romanticisms

15

   

Revolution and Restoration

15

   

Medieval Literature

15

Modules - Year Three

Year 3 (Level 6)

In Year 3 (Level 6), students take the 30 credit ISP, Dissertation in English and American Literature, the core module Literature and Society and a minimum of 45 credits of optional modules, which may include a second ISP, Creative Writing Portfolio, giving a total of 90 credits for the year. Students must choose further modules, which can but need not include English and American Literature optional modules.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Dissertation in English and American Literature

30

Film Noir: The Dark Side of America

15

Literature and Society

15

Creative Writing Portfolio

30

   

Dissertation in English Literature

30

Optional modules

 

Writing at the Borders

15

Words and Pictures: The Contemporary American Graphic Novel

15

Postmodernism: Fiction, Film and Theory

15

Contemporary British Fiction

15

Freedom and Death

15

Sex, Scandal and Society: Eighteenth-Century Writing

15

Shakespearean Stages: Making and Re-Making the Plays of Shakespeare and his Contemporaries

15

Shakespeare on Film: Adaptation and Appropriation

15

Postcolonial and World Literature in English

15

Writingscapes

15

The Alcohol Question

15

Gender and Power in Restoration Literature

15

That womb where you imprison’d were: Pregnancy, Childbirth and Maternity in the Early Modern Period

15

High Culture: Drink, Drugs, and the American Dream

15

Modernist Manifestos and Magazines

15

Wild Woods and Wide Worlds: British and American Children’s Fiction

15

   

 

Students may choose to study elective modules which are offered as part of other programmes in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and across the University. These include:

  • Modules in other subjects closely related to English and American Literature such as Film Studies or History.
  • Modules in other subjects in which they may have a particular interest such as Media, Culture and Creative Practice or Politics.
  • Modules designed to help students for whom it is not their first language to improve their use of English for Academic Purposes.
  • Modern foreign languages modules at different levels in French, German, Spanish, Russian, Japanese and Chinese (Mandarin).
  • Free standing modules related to the development of graduate attributes, student volunteering, and studying abroad as part of the University’s exchange programme.

 

For further information on the content of modules currently offered, including the list of elective modules, please visit: www.keele.ac.uk/recordsandexams/az