Module Catalogues, Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University   
Module Code: ENG322
Module Title: The Gothic
Module Level: Level 3
Module Credits: 5.00
Academic Year: 2019/20
Semester: SEM2
Originating Department: English
Pre-requisites: N/A
Ghost stories, horror novels, ancient European tribes, medieval churches, dystopian megacities, revolutions and reactions, constitutions and tales of chivalry – all of these are Gothic. This module sets out to excavate the complex cultural history of the Gothic that connects them. The module builds on the recent critical reassessment of Gothic as a term with specific historical meanings: freedom or slavery, piety or superstition to the eighteenth and nineteenth century; horror, abjection, and transgression in the present day. By uncovering a larger context, students achieve a resonant experience and a rich critical understanding of the global cultural phenomenon of ‘the Gothic’.

The main focus of this module is Gothic literary writing, from the eighteenth century to the globalized present, studied alongside film and tv, cartoons, video games, and digital platforms and memes. Texts are studied as contemporary cultural documents, set within the context of a rich genre history of over 250 years and of important concepts and approaches that have emerged from the Gothic, such as abjection, cryptonomy, hauntology, and Object-Oriented Ontology (OOO).’

By studying and discussing Gothic texts, learners will develop advanced skills in critical thinking, persuasive writing, and genre analysis.

Overall the module aims to:

• Introduce students to the cultural phenomenon and ‘tradition’ of the Gothic, covering texts which are common cultural reference points, historic and contemporary;

• Provide critical and conceptual frameworks for thinking about and interpreting these texts;

• Encourage students to consider relationships between texts and contexts, production and reception, in local and global perspectives;

• Encourage students to develop original and persuasive readings of texts, informed by close reading and knowledge of key contexts and critical perspectives

Learning outcomes 
A. produce independent critical analyses of the Gothic in literature and culture

B. demonstrate critical understanding and awareness of the cultural phenomenon of the Gothic in historical and cross-cultural perspectives

C. structure coherent, perceptive and reflective responses to a variety of Gothic texts in a range of different media (prints, novels, audio recordings, films, etc.)

Method of teaching and learning 
The teaching sessions are divided into lectures and seminars. Lectures introduce relevant knowledge and ideas. Seminars facilitate reflective critical discussions about specific texts and contexts.
Topics and texts may typically include:

1. Living in Gothic times: Introducing the Gothic (Angela Carter, The Bloody Chamber)

2. Global Gothic: Ahmed Saadawi, Frankenstein in Baghdad, Max Brooks, World War Z, Bong Joon Ho, Parasite

3. Ecogothic: Cormac Macarthy, The Road and Rana Dasgupta, Tokyo Cancelled

4. Cosmic Gothic: H.P. Lovecraft, The Dreams in the Witch House and the films of Guillermo Del Toro

5. Neogothic: Graeme Macrae Burnet, His Bloody Project and the Melmoth texts of Charles Maturin and Sarah Perry

6. Female Gothic: Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale and The Testaments; Mian Mian, Candy; and classical female Gothic in Ann Radcliffe and the Bronte sisters

7. Cybergothic: James Tiptree, Jr., The Girl Who Was Plugged In; Silent Hill; Friend Request; Slenderman

8. Gothic and the Short Story: Helen Oyeyemi, What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours; adaptations of M.R. James

9. YA Gothic: Holly Black, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown; Stephenie Meyer, Twilight; the vampire in Anne Rice and Poppy Z. Brite

10. Gothic Comics: Alan Moore, From Hell and Todd Phillips, Joker

11. Postmodern Gothic: Mark Z. Danielewski, House of Leaves

12. Gothic History: Hilary Mantel’s Cromwell trilogy, on page and screen

13. Classical Gothic: reading and adapting Horace Walpole, Ann Radcliffe and Matthew Lewis

Delivery Hours  
Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab/Prcaticals Fieldwork / Placement Other(Private study) Total
Hours/Semester 13  26        111  150 


Sequence Method % of Final Mark
1 Portfolio 40.00
2 Coursework Essay 60.00

Module Catalogue generated from SITS CUT-OFF: 12/2/2020 4:48:06 AM