Visiting Students course outline booklet 2015-2016 Visiting Student Academic Co-ordinator

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Discipline of English,

National University of Ireland,


Visiting Students




Visiting Student Academic Co-ordinator:

Dr. Richard Pearson, Room 308, Ext 5613

Floor 1, Tower 1, Arts/Science Building

Visiting Student Administrative Co-ordinator:

Ms. Irene O’Malley, Room 511, Ext 2567

Floor 3, Tower 1, Arts/Science Building

Discipline of English Guidelines for Visiting Students
Please read the following carefully:

  • Each Lecture and Seminar Course is worth 5 ECTS.

  • Visiting Students may take as many Lecture Courses from the options available in 2BA and 3BA as their timetable allows. (Please note some lectures are capped and some lectures are on at the same time.)

  • Only ONE Seminar Course per semester is allowed to be taken by any student.

  • Semester 1 Seminar classes commence during the third week of term (ie week beginning September 21st)

  • Registration for Discipline of English seminars takes place on:

Thursday, September 10th, 2015 from 10am to 12noon, Aula Maxima, Ground Floor, Quadrangle Building.

  • Dates for submission of Essays will be announced at Lectures.

  • Seminar Courses are assessed by continuous assessment and a final essay/portfolio.

Lecture Courses Semester 1, 2015-2016


This course will explore contemporary world literature through works of new and recent fiction. The course texts will comprise of novels by writers from across several continents. We shall explore how these current voices make sense of our complex contemporary global culture, using key critical approaches, literary criticism and literary reviews. We will examine contemporary narrative strategies, authorial identities, and the relationships between story-telling, memory, history, and the self. We will focus on debates that shape our own world: deriving from such topics and social issues as globalization and capitalist development, sexuality and gender, race and ethnicity, memory and loss, migration and journeys, community and the family, repression and moral guilt, decolonization and neo-colonial formations, and conflict and violence.

Venue: Thursday 11-12 AM250 O’hEocha Theatre and Friday 1-2 Richard Kirwan Theatre SC001

Lecturers: Dr. Sorcha Gunne and Dr. Richard Pearson

Texts: J.M. Coetzee, Disgrace (1999)

Tsitsi Dangarembga, Nervous Conditions (1988)

Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go (2005)

Indra Sinha, Animal’s People (2007)

Aravind Adiga, The White Tiger (2008)

Kiran Desai, The Inheritance of Loss (2006)

Hanif Kureishi, The Buddha of Suburbia (1990)

Ian McEwan, Atonement (2001)

Nadine Gordimer, The House Gun (1998)

Cormac McCarthy, The Road (2006)

Assessment: Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


Romanticism represents one of the most important periods of innovation in literary history. This course examines major figures in the movement, c. 1790-1820, including Wordsworth, Coleridge, Blake, Keats and Shelley, and critics and satirists such as Thomas Love Peacock and Jane Austen. The Romantics challenged inherited orthodoxies of subject matter and style in poetry and prose, emphasizing the value of imagination and the sublime, childhood, superstition, and taboo subjects of sexuality and violence. 

Venue: Monday 4-5 O’Flaherty Theatre and Tuesday 5-6 IT250 IT Building
Lecturer: Prof. Daniel Carey and Dr. Muireann O’Cinneide

Texts: Course Reader:

Includes selected writings of Wordsworth, Coleridge, Blake, Shelley, Keats, John Clare, and lesser-known writers, as well as extracts from political commentators such as Burke and Wollstonecraft. (The Course Reader will be available from Print That on Concourse)
Individual Texts:

Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility (1811)

Maria Edgeworth, Belinda (1801)

Thomas de Quincey, Confessions of an English Opium Eater (1821)

James Hogg, The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner (1824)

(These texts will be available from the College Bookshop.)

Assessment: Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


(Home students register under ENG238)

This course investigates selected British Victorian prose, poetry, fiction, and drama, from 1832 until the turn of the century. It discusses how class conflict, gendered ideologies, religious controversies, scientific discoveries and imperial ambitions shaped (and were in turn shaped by) the literature of this tumultuous period.

Students wishing to read ahead should begin with Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Barton.

Venue: Wednesday 9-10 AM150 O’Tnuathail Theatre and Wednesday 2-3 IT250 IT Building
Lecturers: Dr. Muireann O’Cinneide
Texts: Carol T. Christ and Catherine Robson, eds., The Norton Anthology of English Literature: Volume E, The Victorian Age (New York and London, 2012).

(Available in the Book Store. Make sure you purchase the right volume).

Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Barton (1848)

Charles Dickens, Great Expectations (1860)

Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness (1902)
Assessment: Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


Twentieth Century Irish Drama

This course introduces students to the rich, diverse and innovative drama of Irish playwrights in the twentieth century. It charts the movement in Irish drama from the creation of the national theatre movement at the end of the 19th century to the present day. Plays ranging from the works of Lady Gregory and W.B. Yeats to those of Brian Friel and Marina Carr will introduce students to the social, political, and cultural tensions, complexities and motives inherent in the making of modern Irish theatre. By the end of the course, students will be able to identify, analyse and contrast a range of plays written in a variety of theatrical styles and will be able to relate these dramas to changing issues in Irish society, politics, and culture throughout the twentieth century.


Wednesday 9-10 AC002 Anderson Lecture Theatre and Friday 9-10 AM250 Colm O’hEocha Theatre


Dr. Ian R. Walsh and Dr. Miriam Haughton


John Harrington (ed), Modern and Contemporary Irish Drama (Norton)

All other primary texts not in the Norton Anthology will be provided or are available through online databases.

Note: Students are urged only to buy the editions mentioned above, as cheaper editions often contain uncorrected errors that will impede your appreciation and understanding of the text.


Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)

Lecture Courses Semester 2, 2015-2016

ENG203.e Genre Studies

This course will involve the study of literary genres and how these relate to and emerge out of the cultural contexts that formed them. The course will focus on a series of literary texts representative of particular generic forms, for example, the realist novel, science fiction, political writing, imperial romance, historical fiction, children's fiction, utopian writing, travel writing. We will study generic narratives, myths and characters alongside cultural themes and contexts and evolving media formats.


Thursday 12-1 IT250 IT Building, 1st Floor and Thursday 3-4 Kirwan Theatre


Dr. Andrew O’Baoill and Dr. Richard Pearson


(not in running order):

George Eliot, Silas Marner (OUP)

Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Norton)

H.G. Wells, The Time Machine (Norton)

Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Herland (Broadview)

Nellie Bly - 10 Days in a Mad House

Upton Sinclair - The Jungle

Jules Verne - Around the World in Eighty Days

Final text tbc


Essay (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)

ENG202.e 18th Century studies
This course aims to introduce students to the literature and culture of eighteenth-century Britain and Ireland. The Victorians loathed and disowned their eighteenth-century predecessors, denouncing their literature as disgusting, immoral, and horribly impolite. This assessment is not entirely unfair. Yet eighteenth-century authors were deeply concerned with politeness, with debating the meaning and role of literature and art-forms, and exploring the morality of human nature and society itself. This course seeks to uncover some of paradoxes of eighteenth-century writing in order to recover the richness of its literary heritage. It will look at the expansion of print culture, with the 'rise of the novel' as a dominant literary form, the modulations of satire, the flowering of 'sentimental' literature and its more carnal dimensions. Themes covered will include financial crisis, the tension between money and morality, and the slipperiness of gender and sexuality. While seeking to historicise the period, the course will also raise parallels with modern culture and explore what resonances the literature of the period might have for contemporary readers.

Venue: Wednesday 10-11 Aras Ui Chathail Lecture Theatre and Thursday 3-4 Darcy Thompson Theatre

Lecturers: Dr. Rebecca Barr
Assessment: Essay (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


(Home students register under ENG204)

This course seeks to familiarise students with the rich variety of early modern drama and poetry. To this end, we will consider the work of well-known authors such as William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe, alongside that of their less-familiar contemporaries, including Elizabeth Cary and Aemilia Lanyer. The course is arranged thematically, rather than in a text-based way, into two sections. Section A focuses on religious and political contexts that inform early modern literature. During the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, England was ruled by several monarchs, experienced religious reformation and conflict, faced a succession crisis and lived in threat of foreign invasion. We will be exploring how these historical circumstances informed literary representations of kingship and court politics, and articulations of faith and belief. Having addressed some political and religious contexts for interpretation of early modern literature, Section B moves to consider identities (of gender, race and sexuality). This section of the course will address ideas such as gender transgression, desire, female speech, selfhood, and difference as they are manifested in drama and poetry by male and female writers.


Monday 5-6 O’Flaherty Theatre and Tuesday 3-4 O’Flaherty Theatre


Dr. Victoria Brownlee


Christopher Marlowe, Edward II

William Shakespeare, The Tempest

William Shakespeare, Othello

William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra

Elizabeth Cary, The Tragedy of Mariam

Course Reader

Assessment: Essay (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


(Home students register under EN2123)This lecture course examines a range of sixteenth and seventeenth British literature written by Shakespeare and his early modern contemporaries. Section A of EN2123 will run on Mondays and Tuesdays from weeks 1 to 6, and Section B will run on Mondays and Tuesdays from weeks 7 to 12 of the semester.

Section A:

Topic TBD.

Section B:

Section B of ‘Studies in Renaissance Literature’ deals with Shakespeare’s Hamlet and its confluences. We will begin by raising broad questions about what ‘Shakespeare’ means and why we continue to study his works today. Our first few lectures will investigate the varied resonances of ‘Shakespeare’ across time and cultures. The remainder of this section will then be dedicated to an intensive investigation of the work for which Shakespeare is best remembered in contemporary society: Hamlet. Not only will we apply a variety of modern critical lenses (including feminist and Freudian theory) to this Renaissance play, but we will also give some consideration to how Hamlet has been received and adapted by later authors such as Iris Murdoch or Laura Bohannan.

Venue: Monday 5-6 AM250 Colm O’hEocha Theatre and Tuesday 3-4 IT250 IT Building
Lecturers: Dr. Lindsay Reid and A.N.Other
Texts: Section A:

To be confirmed

Section B:

A course reader, available from PrintThat

William Shakespeare, Hamlet (Norton edition), available from the university bookshop
Assessment: Essay (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


This course is an introduction to some of the key elements of dramatic writing, dramaturgy and theatre history from the late nineteenth century to the present. We pay special attention to the ways in which meanings are produced by theatre, through acting and directional practice, and to the various ways in which the theatre functions as a social institution.  Naturalistic, modernist, postmodernist and globalized forms of theatre are considered in relation to a number of case studies. The course will also involve attendance at a theatre production during the semester.

Venue:   Tuesday 5-6 AM250 Colm O’hEocha Theatre and Wednesday 9-10 IT250 IT Building


Lecturers:           Prof. Lionel Pilkington and Dr Charlotte McIvor


Texts:   Students must read the following ten plays:

Henrik Ibsen, A Doll’s House (Nick Hern)

Arthur Wing Pinero, The Second Mrs. Tanqueray (Samuel French)

Alfred Jarry, Ubu Roi (Dover Thrift Editions)

Luigi Pirandello, Six Characters in Search of an Author (Drama Online)

Sophie Treadwell, Machinal (Nick Hern)

Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot (Faber and Faber)

Bertolt Brecht Life of Galileo (Methuen/Drama Online)

Harold Pinter, The Homecoming (Faber and Faber/Drama Online)

Lynn Nottage, 'Ruined' (Theatre Communications Group)

Suzan Lori-Parks, The America Play and Other Plays (Theatre Communications Group)


Assessment        Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


This course will introduce and explore two major cultural periodisations of the twentieth century: modernism and postmodernism. While emphasis will be on readings of literature in English, the wider geographical and cultural contexts will be discussed and parallel developments in other arts (including visual arts and architecture) will be explored.

Venue: Tuesday 5-6 ENG-G018 Lecture Theatre 1, Engineering Building and

Wednesday 9-10 Kirwan Theatre

Lecturers: Prof. Sean Ryder and Dr. Justin Tonra

Texts: Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway (Oxford paperback)

Muriel Spark, The Driver’s Seat (Penguin)

Vladimir Nabokov, Pale Fire (Penguin)

A Course Reader is available from Print That, and other texts will be made available on Blackboard.
Assessment: Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


Irish Poetry and Fiction: Yeats, Joyce and After
This course focuses on two of the Irish giants of twentieth-century literature and on the impact of their work on subsequent poets and fiction writers. W.B. Yeats and James Joyce will be the concentration of the first six weeks of the course, with brief looks ahead at their influence; what emerges in more recent writers who borrow, steal, adapt, and contest their writing will be the focus of the course for the second six weeks.


Wednesday 2-3 IT250 IT Building and Friday 9-10 AM250 Colm O’hEocha Theatre


Dr. John Kenny and Dr. Adrian Paterson


W.B. Yeats, The Major Works, ed. Edward Larrissey (Oxford, 2008)

Writing After Yeats (course book available at Print That / on Blackboard)

James Joyce, Dubliners (1914), A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916), Ulysses (1922) [extracts]

Flann O’Brien, At Swim-Two-Birds (1939)

John McGahern, The Dark (1965)

Patrick McCabe, The Dead School (1995)

Kevin Barry, Dark Lies the Island (2012)

Eimear McBride, A Girl is a Half-formed Thing (2013)


Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)


This course focuses upon poetry, fiction and non-fiction from the mid-nineteenth century with an emphasis on the way in which American writers are constructing a national literature and a national history, engaging with contemporary reform movements, such as abolitionism and women's rights, and investigating religious belief. Texts include selections from Whitman, Hawthorne, Melville, Stowe, Dickinson, Douglass.

Venue: Monday 4-5 O’Flaherty Theatre and Friday 1-2 AC002 Anderson Lecture Theatre
Lecturers: Prof. Sean Ryder and Dr. Sorcha Gunne

Texts: Norton Anthology of American Literature: Eighth Edition, Volume B

            Herman Melville, Moby-Dick (Penguin edition)
Assessment: Mid-term Assessment (40%)

End-of-Semester Examination (60%)

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