A Walk Down Memory Lane – A Basic Course in the Study and Appreciation of English Literature

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Instructor: Prof. Sridhar Rajeswaran
Medium: English

Description
This is a Basic course specifically designed for anyone who wants to know about English Literature. The only pre-requisite is an adequate level of linguistic competence in the English language and a bent of mind that may be defined as sensitive. However, this course will also appeal to students of English Literature and Literatures Written in English, who want to walk down memory lane and brush up their knowledge of the subject.

The course will comprise of three Sections:

Section I would begin with a general introduction to art and literature, where sufficient attention to the notion of art will be paid in so far as it helps locate literature. The primary focus would then shift to an introduction that would centre on the need to provide a sense of history in which, the notion of tradition in a larger Cultural and Civilizational context may be grounded. This would entail beginning with the Greek World and its ideas. Considering the fact that the teacher and the participants come from entirely different cultural backgrounds, contextual knowledge to the required extent, will be made the consistent back-drop.

Section II would trace the development of English Literature through six centuries beginning with the 14th century and stop with the Moderns, a timeline chosen deliberately since after that English Literature, by virtue of the tremendous contribution from ever widening spaces comes under the banner of Literatures Written in English.

Section III would offer an overview of trends and movements that may be broadly described as contemporaneous. It shall seek to introduce the Post-modern and the Postcolonial, and accordingly would bring in the larger sphere of literary contributions from spaces other than the European Centre. Certain literary theories, trends, movements, and moments would be introduced with the help of certain texts drawn from different parts of the English-speaking world. Unlike the earlier part where we have not gone beyond the Great Moderns, here as ideas are in the realm of the contemporary, they are more or less up to date, as they rightly should be. Certain representative texts from contemporary times may be used to foreground them.

THE COURSE CONSISTS OF 21 SESSIONS OF 1 ½ HOURS OF LEARNING 

Outline of Course – I
Section I

  1. Literature as Art-I: General Introduction to the concept
  2. Literature as Art – II: Advanced concepts
  3. Civilization, Culture and Literature
  4. Grounding Literature in History

Section II
5. The concept of Genres in Literature: An Introduction
6. Poetry as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of poetic forms, such as the lyric, sonnet etc.
7. Fiction as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of novels, picaresque, narrative, gothic, etc.
8. Short Fiction: Different kinds of short fiction
9. Drama as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of plays, realistic, epic, etc.
10. Alternative concepts of Drama/Performing Arts
11. An Introduction to Literary Criticism and Analysis
12. Representative trends and movements in Poetry from the 14th century to the Modernist Period
13. Certain representative trends and movements in Fiction
14. Representative trends and movements in Drama from the 14th century to the Modernist Period

Section III
15. Introducing the Post-modern and Postcolonial World
16. Literatures in English in the Post-modern/Postcolonial World – an overview
17. An Introduction to Contemporary Literary Theories
18. The Relevance of Postcolonial/Post-modern Theories to Literary Texts
19. Representative trends in Post-modern Literatures in English
20. Representative trends in Postcolonial Literatures in English
21. Concluding Session: Tying Beginnings to Endings

Note: Though this course seeks to cover the entire spectrum, it is a basic level course that would be taught at a foundational level or in other words pitched as a Course for Beginners. It is obvious the outline appears to cover a wide spectrum but it is unavoidable due to the expansive nature of even the bare minimum.

About The Instructor
Professor Sridhar Rajeswaran is a Visiting Professor of Humanities at the Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences, University of Mumbai and Department of Atomic Energy. He is also a member of the Advisory Committee of the CoHaB IDC Constructions of Home and Belonging Indian Diaspora Centre, University of Mumbai. He is Global Faculty at the Fairleigh Dickinson University, NJ, USA.

He has studied at the Universities of Madras and Bombay. His doctoral work dealt with postcolonial perspectives on the poetry of W.B. Yeats. His post-doctoral areas of research are Modernist Poetry, Modern Indian Drama, Postcolonial Studies and Studies of the Indian Diaspora in Literature and films.

He has over 25 articles published in reputed academic journals and critical anthologies in India and abroad and has presented 45 papers/guest talks/keynote lectures at national and international conferences in India, Britain, Germany, Belgium, Austria and Canada.

He has been a Fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Simla and is also the recipient of the University of Mumbai and the University of the Fraser Valley, BC, Canada’s Indo-Canadian Studies Centre’s Senior Fellowship for his work on Deepa Mehta, the Indo Canadian Diasporic Film maker.

In the summer semester of 2013 he was Visiting Professor at the University of Dusseldorf. He was DAAD Visiting Professor at the University of Muenster, Germany in 2010-2011 and 2012-13.

He was the Dean Faculty of Arts and Professor and Head of the Department of English, University of Kachchh, Bhuj in Gujarat from 2008 to 2012. He was an Assistant Professor in English Literature at the University of Hodeidah, Yemen from 2000 to 2001 and then again from 2004 to 2005.

From 2008 onwards he has given guest seminars at the Universities of Muenster, Dusseldorf, Bonn and Cologne in Germany. He has also lectured on Yeats and Postcolonial Theories at the Universities of Magdeburg, Germany and conducted creative writing workshops at the University of Siegen, also in Germany. He has taught Indian drama and poetry to Postgraduate students at the University of Avignon, France from 2002-04. In 2011 he has guest lectured at the University of Bologna, in Italy and the Universities of George Washington, Georgetown, Penn State and Fairleigh Dickinson, in the USA.

Professor Sridhar is also a creative writer and has written poems and plays. His plays have been broadcast over the All India Radio and been read in professional theatres. He is a member of the Association of Contemporary Drama in Europe. His poetry has been published in many journals like Kavya Bharati, JIWE, in India and in Wasafiri and World Literatures Written in English, in the U.K. It is available on the websites of the Siegen, Cologne and Dusseldorf Universities, Germany. His poetry has also been translated into French and German. His first collection of poems entitled, Cracked Images: Frozen Frames, was published in 2008. He has been Poet-in-Residence at the University of Dusseldorf in 2006-07. He has also been an invited poet at the Kitab Literary Festival, Mumbai in 2007 and at the London Book Fair, London in 2009.

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Section I

1
Literature as Art-I: General Introduction to the concept (Coming Soon)
2
Literature as Art-I: General Introduction to the concept (Coming Soon)
3
Literature as Art – II: Advanced concepts
1:25
4
Literature as Art – II: Advanced concepts
1:25
5
Civilization, Culture and Literature
1:21
6
Civilization, Culture and Literature
1:21
7
Grounding Literature in History
1:19
8
Grounding Literature in History
1:19

Section II

1
5. The concept of Genres in Literature: An Introduction
1:10
2
5. The concept of Genres in Literature: An Introduction
1:10
3
6. Poetry as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of poetic forms, such as the lyric, sonnet etc.
1:28
4
6. Poetry as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of poetic forms, such as the lyric, sonnet etc.
1:28
5
7. Fiction as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of novels, picaresque, narrative, gothic, etc.
1:16
6
7. Fiction as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of novels, picaresque, narrative, gothic, etc.
1:16
7
8. Short Fiction: Different kinds of short fiction
1:22
8
8. Short Fiction: Different kinds of short fiction
1:22
9
9. Drama as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of plays, realistic, epic, etc.
1:19
10
9. Drama as a Literary Genre: Different kinds of plays, realistic, epic, etc.
1:19
11
10. Alternative concepts of Drama/Performing Arts
1:12
12
10. Alternative concepts of Drama/Performing Arts
1:12
13
11. An Introduction to Literary Criticism and Analysis
1:18
14
12. Representative trends and movements in Poetry from the 14th century to the Modernist Period
1:19
15
13. Certain representative trends and movements in Fiction
1:23
16
14. Representative trends and movements in Drama from the 14th century to the Modernist Period
1:17

Section III

1
15. Introducing the Post-modern and Postcolonial World
00:56
2
15. Introducing the Post-modern and Postcolonial World
00:56
3
16. Literatures in English in the Post-modern/Postcolonial World – an overview
1:27
4
16. Literatures in English in the Post-modern/Postcolonial World – an overview
1:27
5
17. An Introduction to Contemporary Literary Theories
1:15
6
17. An Introduction to Contemporary Literary Theories
1:15
7
18. The Relevance of Postcolonial/Post-modern Theories to Literary Texts
1:26
8
19. Representative trends in Post-modern Literatures in English
1:28
9
19. Representative trends in Post-modern Literatures in English
1:28
10
20. Representative trends in Postcolonial Literatures in English
1:25
11
20. Representative trends in Postcolonial Literatures in English
1:25
12
21. Concluding Session: Tying Beginnings to Endings
1:27
13
21. Concluding Session: Tying Beginnings to Endings
1:27
Enrolled: 35 students
Duration: 30 hours
Lectures: 37
Video: 1.25
Level: Advanced

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Working hours

Monday 9:30 am - 6.00 pm
Tuesday 9:30 am - 6.00 pm
Wednesday 9:30 am - 6.00 pm
Thursday 9:30 am - 6.00 pm
Friday 9:30 am - 5.00 pm
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed
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