About this course

How have expressions of sexuality and gender in British literature been shaped by the social constraints of different periods? How have female authors navigated systems of patriarchy, and what has been the role of literature in confirming and subverting gender norms? And how are the rapid changes in approaches, attitudes, and practices around gender and sexuality since the 20th century reflected in contemporary British writing? This courses offers a unique and exciting opportunity to explore these questions and more, examining a wide range of British literature from various genres and periods thorugh the lens of gender and sexuality.

You will discuss representations of the changing roles of women in Early Modern England, from Isabella Whitney’s A Sweet Nosegay and William Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost in the 16th Century to ‘breeches’ plays of the 17th Century. You will explore themes of womanhood, sexuality, and maternity in Romanticism and the Gothic through works such as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Further areas of discussion will include censorship and (homo)sexuality, and differing constructions of masculinity in 20th Century British literature, as well as exploring queer literature in contemporary Britain, such as the works of Mary Jean Chan. Theoretical frameworks, including feminist literary theory and queer theory, will be examined and applied throughout the course, and lectures and supplementary resources will equip you with the historical and cultural knowledge to contextualise the texts you will study.

Repression, Subversion, Expression is the perfect course for you if you are a Humanities student seeking to develop your knowledge of British literature and culture, your analytical skills, and your understanding of varied forms of self-expression.

Please click below to download the formal Course Outline:

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, you will:

  • Be able to demonstrate knowledge of the role of gender and sexuality in a range of British literature.
  • Be able to assess the changing role of gender and sexuality in British literature of diverse periods and genres.
  • Be able to evaluate the relationship between literary texts and their historical and cultural contexts.
  • Be able to apply key theoretical frameworks including feminist theory and queer theory to literary texts.

Who is this course suitable for?

This course would suit students of the Humanities, especially those with an interest in English Literature, Theatre, Dramatic Arts, or History.

Dates and availability

Available as a Residential or Online course on the following date:

Session 1: 24th June to 12th July 2024

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Get in touch:

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