1 x 1-hour lecture weekly
1 x 1-hour workshop weekly
1 x 111-hour independent study per semester
9 units of second-year topics
Enrolment not permitted
ENGL2133 has been successfully completed
Assumed knowledge
Basic literary concepts and terminology.
Assignment(s), Analysis
Topic description

This topic will explore the earliest works of English literature in the wider context of the early medieval North Sea cultures. From the 8th to the 11th centuries, England and Scandinavia were in constant contact driven by waves of immigration, raiding, trading and invasion. Converted to Christianity, early medieval English authors produced some remarkable writing on Christian themes, but also looked back on the pagan past in Scandinavia in poems like Beowulf. Students will read a wide variety of prose and poetry from the North Sea cultures in translation and will also be offered an introduction to runes, Latin and Old English language.

Educational aims

This topic aims to:

  • Examine the impact of various cultural, social and historical contexts upon a range of early medieval texts
  • Develop a fundamental understanding of the mechanics of medieval literature
  • Develop students’ comprehension of Old English and Latin
  • Further develop students’ critical reading, research, and writing skills
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to able to:

  1. Discuss the use and function of literary devices, tropes and narrative in their cultural context
  2. Create translations of simple texts in Old English and Latin
  3. Assess and formulate critical arguments
  4. Construct well-reasoned, well-researched and nuanced responses to literary texts