Ang070 - Introduction to Literary and Cultural Studies - Curriculum

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The module ang070 consists of the following four parts:

Winter Term:

  • Seminar/Übung "Introduction to the Critical and Scholarly Discussion of Literature" (2 SWS)
  • Tutorium "Introduction to the Critical and Scholarly Discussion of Literature" (aka "Research Methods") (1 SWS)

Summer Term:

  • Seminar/Übung "Key Concepts in Cultural Studies" (2 SWS)
  • Vorlesung "Historical Backgrounds and Critical Concepts" (1 SWS)

In order to complete ang070, all parts of this module must be completed successfully, in two consecutive semesters. It is strongly recommended that you begin this module in the winter term.


The aim of this module is to prepare students for participation in critical and scholarly discussions of literature and other cultural texts by helping them:

  • to develop an understanding of the issues and questions dealt with in literary and cultural studies.
  • to acquire and consolidate the basic knowledge and skills necessary for such an understanding.
  • to apply their acquired knowledge and skills in order to address scholarly and critical issues in the fields of literary and cultural studies.


In the course of the module students will be made familiar with

  • different conceptions and definitions of ‘literature’ and ‘culture’
  • a range of different literary as well as other cultural forms of expression from various periods of British and American cultural history
  • the traditions of the debates on literature and various cultural texts
  • the spectrum of genres and periods in literary and cultural history
  • literary/ critical schools and movements
  • changing historical conditions of performance, as well as of production, circulation and reception of books and various other cultural texts

The tutorial TUT accompanying the S/Ü "Introduction to the Critical and Scholarly Discussion of Literature" will focus on skills for finding and processing information. The lecture VL "Historical Backgrounds and Critical Concepts" integrates the aspects outlined above into wider historical, critical and theoretical contexts.


The range of skills required for understanding issues and participating in the scholarly and critical discussion of literature and culture includes:

Research Skills

  • finding information (library and reference skills)
  • processing information (selecting and making excerpts of primary and secondary material; using secondary material for discussion)
  • presenting information (orally and in writing)

Critical and Analytical Skills (Reading Strategies)

  • recognising and describing the specific character of communication in different genres and media (e.g. narrative, dramatic, poetic, visual, etc.).
  • recognising and describing techniques of generating meaning through characterisation, figurative speech and performance in various media.
  • situating literary and cultural texts in the contexts of their production, circulation and reception.
  • identifying contexts in which literary and cultural texts could play a role today, e.g. in scholarly discussions, in projects of work one could do in a seminar paper.

Requirements, Portfolio

The portfolio of requirements for ang070 consists of the following items:

  • S/Ü "Introduction to the Critical and Scholarly Discussion of Literature": RPO + (research paper outline and problem-oriented sample analysis; 50%)
  • S/Ü "Key Concepts in Cultural Studies": RPO + (research paper outline and problem-oriented sample analysis; 50%)
  • In preparation for the problem-oriented sample analysis: three assignments (ungraded)
  • The content of both the tutorial (TUT) and the lecture (VL) will be relevant to various sections and tasks of the RPO+.
  • Regular attendance and active participation in all parts of the module is mandatory

Active Participation

  • Completion of five brief homework assignments in the TUT "Introduction to the Critical and Scholarly Discussion of Literature " (ungraded)
  • Preparation of handouts and relevant texts
  • In preparation for your RPOplus: finding and focusing on a topic (by week 10); presenting your RPOplus project (week 14)

Registration and Cancellation

  • Your Stud.IP registration for the S/Ü "Introduction to the Critical and Scholarly Discussion of Literature" includes the registration for the Portfolio.
  • In order to participate all assignments have to be handed in on time. Nota bene: Once you have handed in your third assignment, your participation in this seminar

is confirmed. You cannot withdraw from your Portfolio after that point, without failing the module.