European Studies

Module information for incoming Erasmus and Exchange students interested in modules in European Studies.

Year 1

Landmarks in European Film (09 20754) (Term 1 and 2)

The module will offer students an introduction to the historical development of European cinema. The first semester will focus on the development of film technology, considering key stages such as silent film, the advent of sound, the role of studios and the development of colour film. The second semester will focus on ‘Moments and movements’, and it will address selected issues including political cinema, auteur cinema, gender issues and the phenomenon of historical cinema. The course topics will be linked to a set of key films, which will be screened and form the subject for seminar discussion.

Year 2

Introduction to the European Novel (09 15205/06) (Term 1 and 2)

This module focuses on four major European novels: Cervantes' Don Quijote , Stendhal's The Red and the Black , Kafka's The Trial and Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose . Whilst the main focus of the course is on the four prescribed texts, the lectures and seminars will also explore the author's oeuvre as a whole, the historical and ideological contexts impinging on their work, and general themes such as their place in the European novel tradition, narrative structure, characterization and psychology. Students are encouraged to explore these contextual approaches to each text and to reflect on the different contributions each text makes to the tradition of the novel. Assessment is by two essays of approximately 2,000 words. Essays should demonstrate a good understanding of at least one of the prescribed texts. Each essay must discuss a different text or texts. Particular credit will be given to essays which demonstrate an ability to make relevant connections with other texts, including other novels covered on the course.

Gender, Culture and Society (0915209/0915210) (Term 1 and 2)

Semester 1 begins with a survey of the fundaments of some of the most influential approaches to theorising about gender. Students are then encouraged to employ the tools offered by these theories to begin to analyse a variety of texts from a range of genres, drawn from several different European socio-cultural moments. Moving from revolutionary France to late 20 th century Spain, the first semester focuses on different representational concepts such as the canon, gender and genre, feminist historiography, gender and minority, the question of nation and nationalism, gender and institutions. Semester II builds on semester I; it concentrates on particular periods and issues: Gender roles in fascist Italy ; women between cultures and decadent masculinities. Students are encouraged to seek links between topics and texts covered. Assessment is by two essays of approx. 2000 words.

European Cinema (09 15207/08) (Term 1 and 2)

This module will introduce students to the cinemas of Spain , Italy , France and Germany from their origins in the silent era up to the end of the twentieth century. Four teaching blocks on these national cinemas will look at (1) Spanish cinema from the Surrealist age on, starting with surrealist films by Luis Bunuel and moving via postwar and 1960s developments to post-Franco film and recent and contemporary directors such as Pedro Almodovar (2) Italian film from neorealism and the ‘auteur' cinema of the 1960s and 1970s to developments in contemporary cinema (3) the silent era in France, French poetic realism of the 1930s, the development of ‘auteur' cinema in the 1960s and the postmodern cinema of the 1980s and 1990s (4) German silent film in the Weimar Republic, Film in National Socialism, West German and East German cinema 1949-89, and contemporary developments in German cinema.