English Literature I [CInt M-Z] (2009/2010)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Susanna Zinato
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
II semestre dal Feb 22, 2010 al May 31, 2010.

Lesson timetable

Learning outcomes

The module aims at making students informed about authors and genre modes which are held to be representative of the English literature and culture belonging to the periodization scheduled for the first-year course syllabus, by presenting them with the basics for a critical analysis of literary texts and genres in their contexts.


“Figuring and disfiguring the modernist character”
The course aims at focusing on the techniques and devices employed to represent character and, consequently, the world-subject relationship in texts particularly representative of the modernist poetics, from its beginning to the first programmatic and radical contestation of its epistemological anxieties in the late thirties.

The module will be held in Italian, primary texts will be read in English.
It will be set up into lectures (24h) and a seminar (24h) intended to further the discussion of the syllabus while applying to textual analysis the critical tools presented during the classes. Non attending students are required to follow the primary text and reference lists recommended to attending students and to complement it with the supplementary reference list.


Primary Texts

-J. Conrad, Heart of Darkness, Mursia, Milano, 1978-1985; o Norton Critical Editions, 2007 (especially recommended to non-attending students)
-V. Woolf, Jacob’s Room, Marsilio, Padova, 1994
- J. Joyce, “Nausicaa”, capitolo13 da Ulysses
-T.S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
-S. Beckett, Murphy

Please be advised: the students are recommended to read the introductions to the selected editions.
B. Segre, “Generi”, in ID, Avviamento all’analisi del testo letterario, Einaudi, Torino, 1985
G. Cianci (ed.), Modernismo/Modernismi, Principato, Milano, 1991 (sections to be indicated)
A. Righetti, Dittico Eliotiano, Part I, Il Segno, Verona, 1984

As regards the handbook covering the literary-cultural context of the period spannig from Victorianism to the present, students are referred to :
A.Sanders, The Short Oxford History of English Literature, Clarendon, Oxford, 2004
In addition, but not as a substitue, the following can be usefully consulted:
P. Bertinetti (ed.), Storia della letteratura inglese, Torino, Einaudi, 2000, vol.II

To facilitate textual reading, students may usefully refer to any of the following optional handbooks of narratology, rhetoric, stylistics and poetics:
A.Marchese, L’officina del racconto:semiotica della narratività, Mondadori, Milano, 1983
A.Marchese, Dizionario di retorica e di stilistica, Mondadori, Milano, 2002
O. Reboul, Introduzione alla retorica, Il Mulino, Bologna, 1996
A. Marchese, Il laboratorio della poesia, Mondadori, Milano, 1997

Please be advised
Further details on required readings and general information on bibliographical material will be provided during classes.

-S. Chatman, Story an Discourse. Narrative Structure in Fiction and Film, Cornell U.P., Ithaca/London, 1978, ch.3: pp.108-134, ch.4: 173-186, ch. 5: 197-215
-Supplementary paragraphs from G. Cianci (ed.), Modernismo/Modernismi, cit., will be given at the beginning of the semester.
-G. Galigani, “Experimentation and Impressionism in Jacob’s Room by Virginia Woolf”, in E. Siciliani , A. Cecere, V.Intonti, A. Sportelli (eds.), Le trasformazioni del narrare, Schena, fasano, 1993
-J. Pilling, “Beckett’s English Fiction”, in J. Pilling (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Beckett, cit., ch. 2

Assessment methods and criteria

The exam will consist in an oral discussion on the module’s topics in Italian and in English. The students attending the seminar may also take in-progress written tests.
Non-attending students will take an oral exam only.