2023-24 MM The Literary Marketplace for MA Students

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  • Modul: ang902 - Modul zur individuellen Profilbildung
  • Lecturer: Anna Auguscik
  • Course: The Literary Marketplace for MA Students
  • Time: Thursday 10-12h, biweekly
  • Venue: A6 2-212
  • Course Description: Based on a reading of R.F. Kuang's bestselling novel and publishing industry satire Yellowface (2023), this course aims at introducing MA students to the history and contemporary practices of the literary marketplace. We will expand the notions of books familiar in literary and cultural studies by those in other disciplines such as book history and publishing studies.

Please, buy and read the following novel:

  • R.F. Kuang, Yellowface. HarperCollins 2023. If possible, use the time until the beginning of term to order (and, ideally, immerse yourself in the reading of) the novel. Additional materials for preparation, as well as the detailed syllabus, will be made available here and/or on Stud.IP.
  • Course Requirements
  • Requirements for 6 KP: regular attendance and a (oral/)written contribution in the form of a portfolio, based on the topic of the seminar.
  • As part of the "Aktive Teilnahme" regulation:
    Die aktive Teilnahme besteht aus folgenden Komponenten
    - regelmäßige Anwesenheit: max. 3 Abwesenheiten und gegebenenfalls Nacharbeit
    - Vor- und Nachbereitung des Seminarstoffs (Expertengruppen, Vorbereitung/Lektüre von Texten) 
    - Entwicklung einer wissenschaftlichen Fragestellung aus dem Problembereich des Seminars. 

Session 1: 26 October

  • Introduction: The Literary Marketplace
  • Example: Yellowface 2023
  • Handouts: Literature & Representation; Narratology; Culture & Representation; Media; Non-Literary Texts; Traditions in Our Discourse on Literature; Approaches and Movements

Session 2: 9 November

  • TOPIC: Judging a Book by Its Cover: Genre and Paratext
  • Theory: Genette, "Introduction" 1987/1997
  • Accomapanying Reading: Phillips on "Reading the Cover" in Matthews and Moody 2007
  • Further Reading: Squires 2007 on Genette and Genre

Session 3: 23 November

  • TOPIC: The Life Cycle of a Book and the Publishing Calendar: Agents, Publishers, Booksellers - and the Literary Prize
  • Theory: Bourdieu 1983
  • Accompanying Reading: Auguscik 2013 (incl. communication model in Simons 2013) and Auguscik 2017 ("Introduction")
  • Further Reading: Thompson 2012 ("Introduction"; "Big Books"); Finkelstein and McCleerey 2005 (chapter 5)

Session 4: 7 December

  • TOPIC: Reading Books: Advanced, Professional, and Other Readers
  • Theory: Iser 1972; Felski 2008 ("Introduction")
  • Accomapanying Reading: Auguscik 2017 (chapter 2)
  • Further Reading: Finkelstein and McCleerey 2005 (chapter 6)

Session 5: 21 December

  • TOPIC: Writing Books: The Birth, Death, and Other Functions of the Author
  • Theory: Barthes (1967); Foucault (1969)
  • Accompanying Reading: Berensmeyer, Buelens and Demoor 2012
  • Further Reading: Finkelstein and McCleerey 2005 (chapter 4)

Session 6: 18 January

  • TOPIC: National Literatures or Global Market? Literature and the Postcolonial
  • Theory: Huggan 2001
  • Accompanying Reading: Brouillette and Finkelstein 2013 (Introduction to Special Issue)
  • Further Reading: Brouillette 2007 (excerpts from Postcolonial Writers in the Global Literary Marketplace); Koegler 2018 (excerpts from Critical Branding)

Session 7: 1 February

  • TOPIC: Book History 101: From Oral and Manuscript Cultures to the Print, Paperback and Digital Revolutions
  • Accompanying Reading: Brouillette 2022; Straub 2021
  • Further Reading: Henrickson 2020; Thompson 2012 (chapter 9); Finkelstein and McCleery 2005 (chapters 2 and 3)


Bibliography and Further Reading

  • Adams, Thomas R., and Nicolas Barker. “A New Model for the Study of the Book.” A Potencie of Life: Books in Society. The Clark Lectures, 1986-1987. Ed. Nicolas Barker. British Library Studies in the History of the Book. London: British Library, 1993. Print.
  • Auguscik, A. "Lost in Translation: Literaturpreise im nationalen Literaturbetrieb". Literaturbetrieb. Zur Poetik einer Produktionsgemeinschaft. Eds. Philipp Theisohn and Christine Weder. Paderborn: Fink, 2013. 97-112.
  • Auguscik, Anna. Prizing Debate: The Fourth Decade of the Booker Prize and the Contemporary Novel in the UK. Bielefeld: transcript, 2017.
  • Barthes, Roland. "The Death of the Author. [1967]" Image, Music, Text. Trans. Stephen Heath. London: Fontana, 1977.
  • Berensmeyer, Ingo, Gert Buelens and Marysa Demoor. 2012. “Authorship as Cultural Performance: New Perspectives in Authorship Studies”. Zeitschrift für Anglistik und Amerikanistik 60.1 (2012): 5–29.
  • Bourdieu, Pierre. “The Field of Cultural Production, Or: The Economic World Reversed.” Poetics 12 (1983): 311-56. Print.
  • Brouillette, Sarah. "Wattpad’s Fictions of Care." (2022) https://post45.org/2022/07/wattpads-fictions-of-care/
  • Clark, Giles. Inside Book Publishing. 3rd ed. New York: Routledge, 2001. Print.
  • Darnton, Robert. “What Is the History of Books?” Daedalus 111.3 (1982): 65-83. Print.
  • Darnton, Robert. “What Is the History of Books? Revisited.” Modern Intellectual History 4.3 (2007): 495–508.
  • English, James F. The Economy of Prestige: Prizes, Awards, and the Circulation of Cultural Value. Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 2005. Print.
  • Felski, Rita. Uses of Literature. Oxford, Blackwell. 2008
  • Finkelstein, David, and Alistair McCleery. An introduction to book history. New York: Routledge, 2005. [bub 278 CT 2009,2007]
  • Foucault, Michel. "What is an Author? [1969]" The Foucault Reader. Ed. Paul Rabinow. New York: Pantheon, 1984.
  • Genette, Gérard. Paratexts: Thresholds of Interpretation [1987]. Forew. Richard Macksey. Trans. Jane E. Lewin. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.
  • Griswold, Wendy, Susanne Janssen, and Kees van Rees. “Conditions of Cultural Production and Reception: Introduction.” Poetics 26 (1999): 285-288. Print.
  • Henrickson, Leah. "The Book in the Digitial Age: An Introduction." Publishing History 83 (2020): 7-18.
  • Huggan, Graham. The Postcolonial Exotic: Marketing the Margins. London and New York: Routledge, 2001. Print.
  • Iser, Wolfgang. "The Reading Process: a Phenomenological Approach." New Literary History 3.2 Winter, 1972): 279-299.
  • Matthews, Nicole, and Nickianne Moody, eds. Judging a Book by Its Cover: Fans, Publishers, Designers and the Marketing of Books. London: Ashgate, 2007. Print. [asl 435.2 CS 9885]
  • Phillips, Angus. "How Books are Positioned in the Market: Reading a Cover." Judging a Book by Its Cover: Fans, Publishers, Designers and the Marketing of Books. Ed. Nicole Matthews and Nickianne MoodLondon: Ashgate, 2007. 19-30.
  • Sapiro, Gisèle. “The Literary Field between the State and the Market.” Poetics31 (2003): 441-64. Print.
  • Squires, Claire. Marketing Literature. The Making of Contemporary Writing in Britain. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007. Print.
  • Straub, Julia. "Literary Reviewing and the Velocity of Book Histories in Times of Digitization." Anglia 139.1 (2021): 224-241.
  • Thompson, John B. Merchants of Culture: The Publishing Business in the Twenty-First Century. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Polity, 2012. Print.
  • Todd, Richard. Consuming Fictions: The Booker Prize and Fiction in Britain Today. London: Bloomsbury, 1996. Print.
  • Van Rees, C.J. “How a Literary Work Becomes a Masterpiece: On the Threefold Selection Practised by Literary Criticism.” Poetics12 (1983): 397-417. Print.
  • Van Rees, Kees, and Gillis J. Dorleijn. “The Eighteenth-Century Literary Field in Western Europe: The Interdependence of Material and Symbolic Production and Consumption.” Poetics 28 (2001): 331-48. Print.
  • Varela-Zapata, Jesús. “Literary Prizes and the Institutionalization of Postcolonial Literatures in English.” Pre- and Post-Publication Itineraries of the Contemporary Novel in English. Eds. Vanessa Guignery and François Gallix. Paris: Éditions Publibook Université, 2007. 211-21. Print.
  • Verdaasdonk, Hugo. “Social and Economic Factors in the Attribution of Literary Quality.” Poetics12.4-5 (1983): 383-95. Print.

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