SoSe 15: MÜ-Medieval English Literatures: The Postcolonial Middle Ages
Andrew James Johnston
Postcolonial criticism has long been a major force in English literary and cultural studies, though at first glance it might seem to be a force relevant only to students of modern or postmodern ... read more
Postcolonial criticism has long been a major force in English literary and cultural studies, though at first glance it might seem to be a force relevant only to students of modern or postmodern literature. After all, when medieval literature was being produced, the New World had not yet been discovered and most of the regions we associate with postcolonial literatures still lay beyond the cultural horizons of European writers. Besides, there is in postcolonial studies a strong tendency not to interrogate many of the implicit historiographical assumptions inherent in the postcolonial project itself, so that postcolonial methodologies easily contribute to the marginalisation of pre-modern literatures. Nevertheless, in recent years medievalists have increasingly been turning to postcolonial themes and methodologies and have produced a wide variety of new readings of familiar medieval texts as well as introducing interesting shifts within the canon of medieval English literature itself. This course seeks to investigate the uses that postcolonial theories and methodologies have for the medievalist.
A reader containing the relevant texts will be made available to participants at the beginning of the semester.
This course will be taught in English and requires a knowledge of the language commensurate with C1 or, preferably, C2.