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Popular Literature: Core Course 2011/12

Michaelmas Term (First Term):

Week One: Introduction to Theories of the Popular (Dr. Darryl Jones)

  1. Curtis White, The Middle Mind: Why Consumer Culture is Turning Us into the Living Dead;
  2. Q. D. Leavis, Fiction and the Reading Public. F.R. Leavis, Mass Civilisation and Minority Culture*

Week Two: Introduction to Theories of the Popular (Dr. Darryl Jones)

  1. Theodor Adorno, The Culture Industry.* George Orwell essay also to be provided.*
  2. John Carey, The Intellectuals and the Masses

Week Three: The Beginnings of Popular Fiction

  1. Horace Walpole, The Castle of Otranto (Dr. Elizabeth McCarthy).
  2. Eighteenth-Century Chapbooks (Dr. Anne Markey)

Week Four: Romantic Gothic

  1. Mary Shelley, Frankenstein (Dr. Elizabeth McCarthy).
  2. Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey (Dr Darryl Jones)

Week Five: Science and the Supernatural

  1. “The Vivisector” by Sir Ronald Ross and ‘The Birthmark” by Nathaniel Hawthorne (Dr Elizabeth McCarthy)*
  2. Dinah Mulock’s ‘The Last House in C____ Street’; Amelia Edwards' ‘The Phantom Coach’; Rhoda Broughton’s‘The Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth’; M. R. James' 'Whistleand I'll Come to You' * (Dr Jarlath Killeen)

Week Six: The Victorian Serial

  1. The String of Pearls: A Romance (Dr Elizabeth McCarthy)
  2. Charles Dickens, The Pickwick Papers (Dr. Jarlath Killeen).

Week Seven: Study Week

Week Eight: The Sensation Novel

  1.  Wilkie Collins, No Name (Dr. Darryl Jones).
  2. Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Lady Audley’s Secret (Dr. Jarlath Killeen)

Week Nine: Empire Fiction

  1. Richard Marsh, The Beetle (Dr. Elizabeth McCarthy).
  2. H. Rider Haggard, King Solomon’s Mines (Dr. Jarlath Killeen).

Week Ten: Fin de Siecle Popular

  1. Robert Louis Stevenson, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (Dr Elizabeth McCarthy)
  2. George du Maurier, Trilby (Dr. Darryl Jones)

Week Eleven: Modernism and the Popular

  1. Joseph Conrad, The Secret Agent (Dr. Darryl Jones)
  2. H. G. Wells, The War of the Worlds (Dr. Jarlath Killeen)

Week Twelve: (Dr. Jarlath Killeen)

  1. L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
  2. The ‘Popular’ Christmas (handouts will be provided).

Hilary Term (Second Term):

Week One:  Female Fiction (Dr. Jarlath Killeen)

  1. The Popular Romance: Nora Roberts, Untamed; Carolina Moon; Hidden Riches.
  2. Chick-Lit: Cecelia Ahern, P.S. I Love You; Sophie Kinsella, The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic; Jane Green, Jemima J.

Week Two: Pornography (Dr Dara Downey and Rachel Glover)

  1. The Memoirs of Fanny Hill (DD)
  2. Catherine Millet, The Sexual Life of Catherine M. (RG)

Week Three: American Genre Fiction.

  1. Dorothy B. Hughes,  In a Lonely Place (Dr Elizabeth McCarthy)
  2.  Jacqueline Susann, The Valley of the Dolls (Dr. Bernice Murphy).

Week Four: Detective Fiction

  1. 'The Adventure of the Six Napoleons' by Arthur Conan Doyle and Farewell, My Lovely by Raymond Chandler (EMcC)
  2. Red Dragon by Thomas Harris.  (BM)

Week Five: Fantasy

  1. A selection of Fantasy stories will be provided before this class (Dr Bernice Murphy)
  2. Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett  (Dr Helen Conrad  O’Briain)

Week Six: Science Fiction (Dr. Bernice Murphy).
     1. Introducing Science Fiction (a selection of stories will be provided before this class)*
     2. Fahrenheit 451 (Ray Bradbury)

Week Seven: Study Week

Week Eight: Modern Horror Fiction (Dr. Bernice Murphy).

  1. Stephen King, Misery.
  2. John Ajvide Lindqvist, Let the Right One In

Week Nine: Popular Poetry/Song (Dr. Philip Coleman).*
(The reading for this class will be provided)

Week Ten: Comic Books and Graphic Novels.
                 1. Marjane Satrapi, Persepolis (Dr Bernice Murphy)
                 2. Grant Morrison Arkham Asylum: Anniversary Edition (Kate Roddy)

Week Eleven: The Contemporary Bestseller (Dr. Bernice Murphy)

  1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  2. Text to be decided by students via class vote once term has started.

Week Twelve:

  1. Student Presentations.



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Last updated 6 February 2012 School of English (Email).