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Proposal Form for New or Revised Modules (MA1 - version 7 - April 2014)

Approval information

Approval Type

 New module  Revised module

 Discontinue module

Date of Introduction/Change


If new, does this module replace another? If so, enter module code and title:


If revised/discontinued, please outline the rationale for the changes:


Confirmation that affected departments have been consulted:


Module Summary

1. Module Code (if known)

2. Module Title

Queering the Literary Landscape: LGBTQ+ Literature and Culture in the Contemporary World

3a. Lead department:

English and Comparative Literary Studies

3b. Teaching Split (if known):

4. Name of module leader

Ross Forman

5. Level

UG:  Level 4 (Certificate) Level 5 (Intermediate)

 Level 6 (Honours)

PG:  Level 7 (Masters)  Level 8 (Doctoral)
See Guidance Notes for relationship to years of study

6. Credit value(s) (CATS)


7. Principal Module Aims

This module complements the 15-CAT module “EN372: Queer and There: Queer Theory and the History of Sexuality in the Global Context.” It aims to familiarise students with a range of literature by LGBTQ+ writers, filmmakers, and artists, largely from the Anglophone world. Through critical and theoretical readings, students will learn about the history of queer representation in the 20th and 21st centuries. Among the topics we will cover are: the reclaiming of the gay and lesbian past, the effect of obscenity trials on queer expression, narrating the AIDS crisis, homosociality, queer reading practices, the development of the LGBT canon, intersectionality (with critical methodologies surrounding race, gender, imperialism, and historical and anthropological approaches), and remediation. We will also look at debates around introducing queer identities to children through literary texts. A particular focus will be on fiction and the novel as forms that have a particular (though not necessarily privileged) relationship to questions of queer interiority and the narration of same-sex acts and identities.

8. Principal Learning Outcomes

Students will leave the module with sharpened skills in critical thinking; in using historical and theoretical materials in literary criticism; and in understanding sexuality and gender as one constitutive way of analysing the contemporary world and literary and cultural texts. They will gain familiarity with new methodologies and regimes of knowledge, as well as new ways to apply these insights to the study of world literature and culture.

9. Timetabled Teaching Activities (summary)

Nine 1.5-hour seminars

10. Departmental Web-link

11. Other essential notes

There will be opportunities for field trips related to the course content.

12. Assessment methods (summary)

100% assessed. One 3,500-word essay (70%), one revision to a Wikipedia entry relating to the course material (10%), and one 1,000-word short response to course material (20%).

For use by Strategic Planning and Analytics Office only - Do not fill in this section


JACS3 Code

Teaching Split

If not provided in 3b above

External Credit Level


Module Context

13. Please list all departments involved in the teaching of this module. If taught by more than one department, please indicate percentage split.

English and Comparative Literary Studies

14. Availability of module

Degree Code


Study Year














Optional module for the Theory, World and Comparative Literature, North American, and English Literature pathways.

English Literature

English & Creative Writing

English & Theatre

Philosophy & Literature

English & French

English & German

English & Italian

English & Latin

Film & Literature

English & Hispanic Studies

UG 2/3



15. Minimum number of registered students required for module to run


16. Pre- and Post-Requisite Modules


Module Content and Teaching

17. Teaching and Learning Activities (totals for module – please see guidance)

Module duration (weeks)




1 x 1.5 hours per week


Project Supervision


Practical Class/Workshops

Supervised time in studio/workshop


External visits

Work based learning


Year abroad

Other activity

(please describe): e.g. distance-learning, intensive weekend teaching etc.

18. Assessment Method (Standard)

Type of assessment


% weighting

Written Examinations


Practical Examinations


Assessed essays/coursework

3,500-word end-of-term essay

1,000-word short essay

Revision to Wikipedia entry relating to course themes


18a. Final chronological assessment (please see guidance)

A short essay based on one of the readings in the first half of the module, accounting for 20% of the module mark; a revision to a Wikipedia entry relating to the course themes accounting for 10% of the module mark; and an essay accounting for 70% of the module mark

19. Methods for providing feedback on assessment.

Individual consultation with tutor; email; Tabula

20. Outline Syllabus

Week 1: Introduction. How to Study the Literature of Homosexuality.

Week 2: The History of Queer Expression 1: Mädchen in Uniform and Radclyffe Hall’s The Well of Loneliness

Week 3: The History of Queer Expression 2: Basil Dearden’s Victim and Rodney Garland’s The Heart in Exile

Week 4: The History of Queer Expression 3: James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room and Jean Genet’s Un Chant d’Amour

Week 5: Backward Glances: Sarah Waters’s Fingersmith and Park Chan Wook’s The Handmaiden

Week 6: Reading Week

Week 7: Queer Culture in Britain 1: Jackie Kay’s Trumpet

Week 8: Queer Culture in Britain 2: Allan Hollinghurst’s The Swimming Pool Library OR Colm Toibin’s The Story of the Night

Week 9: Queer Culture in Southern Africa 1: K. Selo Duiker’s Thirteen Cents

Week 10: Queer Culture in Southern Africa 2: Tatamkhulu Africa’s Bitter Eden

21. Illustrative Bibliography

Indicative Primary literary and cultural texts
Afrika, Tatamkhulu. Bitter Eden. 2002. Picador, 2015.
Atkinson, CJ. Can I Tell You About Sexual Diversity? Jessica Kingsley, 2016.
Baldwin, James. Giovanni’s Room. 1956. Everyman, 2016.
Dearden, Basil, dir. Victim. 1961.
Duiker, K. Selo. Thirteen Cents. Ohio University Press, 2013.
Garland, Rodney. The Heart in Exile. 1953. Valancourt, 2014.
Genet, Jean, dir. Un Chant d’amour. 1950.
Greenwell, Gareth. What Belongs to You. Picador, 2016.
Hall, Radclyffe. The Well of Loneliness. 1928. Wordsworth, 2014.
Hollinghurst, Alan. The Swimming Pool Library. 1998. Vintage Classics, 2014.
Kay, Jackie. Trumpet. 1998. Picador Classic, 2016.
Mootoo, Shani. Cereus Blooms at Night. Granta, 1999.
Park, Chan-wook, dir. The Handmaiden. 2015.
Sagan, Leontine. Mädchen in Uniform. 1931.
Satyal, Rakesh. Blue Boy. Kensington Publishing, 2010.
Toibin, Colm. The Story of the Night. 1997. Picador, 2008.
Waters, Sarah. Fingersmith. 2002. Virago, 2012.
Winterson, Jeanette. Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit. Vintage, 1991.
Yanigahara, Hanya. A Little Life. Picador, 2016.

Indicative critical and theoretical materials:
Boone, Joseph. The Homoerotics of Orientalism. Columbia UP, 2014.
Butler, Judith. Bodies That Matter. Routledge, 1993.
Castle, Terry. The Apparitional Lesbian: Female Homosexuality and Modern Culture. Columbia UP, 1995.
Chen, Mel Y. Animacies: Biopolitics, Racial Mattering, and Queer Affect. Duke UP, 2012.
Doan, Laura. Sapphic Modernities: Sexuality, Women and National Culture. Palgrave Macmillan, 2006.
Defiant Desire: Gay and Lesbian Lives in South Africa. Ed. Mark Gevisser and Edwin Cameron. Ravan Press, 1994.
Foucault, Michel. The History of Sexuality: The Will to Know. 1977. Penguin 2008.
Eng, David. The Feeling of Kinship: Queer Liberalism and the Racialization of Intimacy. Durham: Duke UP, 2010.
Halberstam, Jack [formerly Judith]. Female Masculinity. Duke UP, 1998.
Halperin, David, and Valerie Traub. Gay Shame. U of Chicago P, 2010.
Hall, Donald, and Annamarie Jagose, ed. The Routledge Queer Studies Reader. Routledge, 2012.
Hoad, Neville. African Intimacies. U of Minnesota P, 2006.
Lim, Eng-Beng. Brown Boys and Rice Queens: Spellbinding Performances in the Asias. New York UP, 2014.
Marcus, Sharon. Between Women: Friendship, Desire, and Marriage in Victorian England. Princeton UP, 2007.
--. “Queer Theory for Everyone.” Signs 31.1 (2005): 191-218.
Menon, Madhavi. Shakesqueer: A Queer Companion to The Complete Works of Shakespeare. Duke UP, 2010.
Nguyen, Tan Hoang. A View from the Bottom: Asian American Masculinity and Sexual Representation. Duke UP, 2014.
Ross, Oliver. Same-sex Desire in Indian Culture: Representations in Literature and Film, 1970-2016. Palgrave Macmillan, 2016.
Sedgwick, Eve Kosofsky. Novel Gazing: Queer Readings in Fiction. Duke UP, 1997.
Traub, Valerie. “The New Unhistoricism in Queer Studies.” PMLA 128.1 (2015): 21-39.

22. Learning outcomes

Successful completion of the module leads to the learning outcomes. The learning outcomes identify the knowledge, skills and attributes developed by the module.
Learning Outcomes should be presented in the format ”By the end of the module students should be able to...” using the table at the end of the module approval form:


23. List any additional requirements and indicate the outcome of any discussions about these.

Library acquisitions


24. Module leader’s signature

Ross G. Forman

25. Date of approval

26. Name of Approving Committee (include minute reference if applicable)

27. Chair of Committee’s signature

28. Head of Department(s) signature

Examination Information

A1. Name of examiner (if different from module leader)

A2. Indicate all available methods of assessment in the table below

% Examined

% Assessed by other methods

Length of examination paper

A3. Will this module be examined together with any other module (sectioned paper)? If so, please give details below.

A4. How many papers will the module be examined by?

 1 paper  2 papers

A5. When would you wish the exam take place (e.g. Jan, April, Summer)?

A6. Is reading time required?

 Yes  No

A7. Please specify any special exam timetable arrangements.

A8. Stationery requirements

No. of Answer books?

Graph paper?


Any other special stationery requirements (e.g. Data books, tables etc)?

A9. Type of examination paper


 Yes  No

Open Book?

 Yes  No


 Yes  No

If restricted, please provide a list of permitted texts:


(By the end of the module the student should be able to....)

Which teaching and learning methods enable students to achieve this learning outcome?

(reference activities in section 15)

Which summative assessment method(s) will measure the achievement of this learning outcome?

(reference activities in section 16)

Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the set texts in their cultural, political, and social contexts

Set reading, seminar discussions, Facebook/Twitter postings

Assessed essays and Wikipedia entry revision (100%)

Develop an understanding of some of the key issues and problems surrounding the production and reception of queer literature and the representation of gender and sexuality

Set reading, seminar discussions, Facebook/Twitter postings

Assessed essays and Wikipedia entry revision (100%)

Refine their skills in working with theoretical materials and in using theory in conjunction with literature

Set reading, seminar discussions, Facebook/Twitter postings

Assessed essays and Wikipedia entry revision (100%)

Consider the importance of literary and theoretical engagements with the world we live in

Set reading, seminar discussions, Facebook/Twitter postings

Assessed essays and Wikipedia entry revision (100%)

Develop an original research topic focused on the module’s special topic

Set reading, seminar discussions, unassessed written essay proposal, timetabled appointment with their tutor

Assessed essays and Wikipedia entry revision (100%)

Engage with digital media and its relevance to the study of literature and culture

Set reading, seminar discussions, unassessed written essay proposal, timetabled appointment with their tutor

Wikipedia entry revision (100%)

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