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Uniwersytet Śląski w Katowicach

Wydział Humanistyczny

dr Nina Augustynowicz

Food in Culture and Literature

This interdisciplinary course is designed to problematise food as a network of relationships between the eater, what is eaten, and the context of eating. This perspective reveals food to be much more than just a biological necessity: instead of a purely nutritional question, food becomes a social, economic, and political issue. It is enmeshed in a number of contexts, signifying gender, race, and class. The course offers a historical perspective on food in culture and literature, including texts which constitute the theoretical framework of food studies. This background is then used to encourage students to read food and food narratives critically in the study of contemporary food cultures.

Among the specific subject areas which the course aims to address are the following: the fundamental opposition between the inside and the outside of the body/self/community and how the binary can be maintained or destroyed in the process of eating, commensality and exclusion on the basis of eating habits, eating disorders as cultural phenomena and the ideology of hunger, commodity histories, conceptual food metaphors.

The materials to be explored in class include a variety of sources, ranging from social media posts and cooking magazines to documentary films and literary fiction. The theoretical texts students will read include the works of the following authors: Mary Douglas, Clause Lévi-Strauss, Roland Barthes, Pierre Bourdieu, Julia Kristeva, Susan Bordo, Carole Counihan, and Lisa Heldke.

 

dr hab. Rafał Borysławski
The Feminine, the Monstrous and the Supernatural in the English Middle Ages
The module proposes to explore early and late medieval visions of femininity, monstrosity and supernatural present chiefly in English medieval literature and culture, but also manifested in the cultures related to it: Old Norse (Viking) and Anglo-Norman. In a number of ways there exist subtle and yet culturally formative correlations between these issues, each of which could assume the form of another and morph into the shapes bearing numerous ambiguous meanings. Medieval representations of women range from representations of their gender-oriented roles to the roles that medieval authors would find deeply disturbing and related to the spheres of power and influence assigned to the supernatural and the monstrous. These two, in turn, did not necessarily carry only negative meanings since their predominant cultural roles were those of omens and important signs. Therefore, by studying the seemingly marginal aspects of medieval cultures, we may approach their seminal meanings as well as see multiple reworkings, uses, abuses and influences that the marginal world of the Middle Ages exerted upon our contemporary culture and its conceptualisation of gender-related issues. The module is intended to offer perspectives and readings of the feminine, the monstrous, and the supernatural that span several medieval eras, from Old English, through Middle English, to the late medieval period. It is additionally intended to propose readings through several contemporary visions of femininity and monstrosity that have been influenced by broadly understood medieval culture.
Among the specific subject areas which are to be explored are the following: the monstrous and the supernatural in an anthropological understanding; early medieval magic and divination; a carnivalesque perspective on femininity and monstrosity; femininity and monstrosity in the Old English period; the supernatural world of the Anglo-French lais (poetic tales of love and supernatural); female characters in medieval English romances; romances and the supernatural; women in the contexts of medieval fabliaux; and several contemporary critical and popular perspectives on medieval constructs of femininity with considerable focus on contemporary cinema.
The texts to be read for classes will include a selection of chiefly Old-English and Middle English texts, although we will also look at several Old Norse and Anglo-Norman/French works. Altogether, all of them will be closely related to the issues pertinent to the module. We will also refer to several critical texts and several texts that look back towards medieval women and medieval monsters from a contemporary perspective.

 

dr Tomasz Burzyński

Wstęp do medioznawstwa

Przedmiot stanowi próbę przekrojowego spojrzenia na podstawowe nachylenia teoretyczne i metody badawcze współczesnych teorii medioznawczych. Proponowany kurs jest zatem w głównej mierze skoncentrowany na dialektycznych relacjach pomiędzy odbiorcą treści kultury masowej a procesami jej wytwarzania, co niejako automatycznie toruje drogę dla dalszych rozważań dotyczących stopnia, w jakim indywidualni odbiorcy zostają ukonstytuowani poprzez oddziaływania ekonomiczne, społeczne i kulturowe typowe dla rynku usług medialnych w czasach późnej nowoczesności.

Socjologia
Przedmiot stanowi próbę przekrojowego spojrzenia na podstawowe nachylenia teoretyczne i metody badawcze współczesnej myśli socjologicznej. Proponowany kurs jest zatem w głównej mierze skoncentrowany na dialektycznych relacjach pomiędzy jednostka a społeczeństwem, co niejako automatycznie toruje drogę dla dalszych rozważań dotyczących stopnia, w jakim indywidualni aktorzy społeczni zostają ukonstytuowani poprzez oddziaływania społeczne i kulturowe. Jako ćwiczenie “wyobraźni socjologicznej” (C. Wright Mills), kurs ten stanowi próbę udzielenia alternatywnych rozwiązań dla kwestii poruszanych w ramach nauk o kulturze i psychologii społecznej.

 

dr hab. Leszek Drong

Welcome to ‘Norn Iron’ – Contemporary Northern Irish culture, literature and film

If you think that Jamie Dornan (in 50 Shades of Grey) is the best that Northern Ireland has on offer, you haven’t seen and read much yet. The six counties of Ireland that belong to the United Kingdom are a very interesting place in so many respects: historically, politically, culturally and not least sociologically. The tensions between two major communities inhabiting Northern Ireland have been reflected in multiple works of art produced in the province over the last 100 years. This course offering takes a closer look at several of those, paying particular heed to how the works to be discussed respond to the conflict between the Irish nationalists and the British unionists. The lectures will focus on both films and writings concerned with Irish history and contemporary developments related to Brexit and the border issue, while our class discussions will revolve round the Derry Girls TV series developed by Lisa McGee in 2018. It is a portrayal of the concluding years of the Troubles in Derry from the point of view of several teenagers who attend a Catholic school and seem to be prejudiced against Protestants, but by poking fun at their attitudes the producers show how ridiculous those prejudices were (and sometimes still are). Other films and literary works to be discussed during the lectures include: Ripley Bogle by Robert McLiam Wilson; Bog Child by Siobhan Dowd; “Whatever You Say, Say Nothing”, “Digging” and “Punishment” by Seamus Heaney; Reading in the Dark by Seamus Deane; One by One in the Darkness by Deirdre Madden; The Truth Commissioner by David Park; Five Minutes of Heaven directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel; Bloody Sunday directed by Paul Greengrass.

Memory in fiction and non-fiction: how and what can characters remember/forget?

This course offering will focus on the presence of memory in various media connected with modern culture: we will zoom in on its uses and abuses in light of psychological and sociological approaches to what memory is capable of, and how it relates to interpretation and transmission of culture at large. We will talk about individual memory and collective memory; we will take a closer look at intertextuality as literature’s memory (by first discussing Mikhail Bakhtin’s views and then Julia Kristeva’s appropriation of Bakhtin’s notion of dialogism). We will discuss the politics of memory in the novel (and elsewhere), ways of remembering and forgetting the past (and the reasons why some people want to forget their past); reliability of autobiographical memory; interdependence of fictional memory and subject positions as well as memory’s figurative representations in film (e.g. in Memento). In class we are going to see how memory performs in actual texts: for that we will read short stories, excerpts from novels and autobiographical writings (non-fiction) to compare how various narrators and characters consolidate their diachronic reliability by performing as “recollectors”. Those excerpts will include, among other writings, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce; Reading in the Dark by Seamus Deane; Ripley Bogle by Robert McLiam Wilson; Notes to Self by Emilie Pine; Charlie Savage by Roddy Doyle. Other media to be discussed will involve video clips and films as well as TV series, photographs and paintings.

 

dr hab. Grzegorz Drożdż

A cognitive account of selected grammatical issues and its application in foreign language pedagogy

Cognitive linguistics, as an enterprise based on human psychological abilities, provides not only a new perspective on grammar but also many tools for describing it. Such alternative accounts enable scholars to increase their understanding of particular grammatical issues and rethink the methods of teaching them. The lectures aim to present the major characteristics of cognitive linguistics and show the pedagogical consequences of cognitive accounts of such grammatical issues as, e.g. present tenses, reported speech, prepositions, articles, count and mass nouns, or passive voice.

The cognitive approach to selected semantic issues

One of the peculiarities of cognitive linguistics is that the starting point of any linguistic analysis is semantics. At the same time, it is within the area of semantics that cognitive linguistics has made a considerable progress, especially within the area of categorisation (the prototype theory), metaphor and metonymy (Conceptual Metaphor Theory, Conceptual Blending Theory, and Conceptual Metonymy Theory), polysemy (the family rememblance model, the network model), etc. The aim of the lecture is to present the major cognitive advancements in these fields and show how these advancements can enhance our understanding of many linguistic problems.

 

dr hab. Sonia Front

Time and Temporality in Literature and Film

The course offers an overview of cultural figurations of time in literature and film. The lectures will provide a historical context of cultural shifts which impact the ways in which we think of time and represent it in literature and cinema. The classes will concentrate on close-reading of texts and films exemplifying various notions of time, e.g. relativity of time in time travel films and “Einstein’s Dreams” by Lightman, parallel universes in “Mr. Nobody,” memory in Nolan’s “Memento” and “Inception” and Amis’s “Time’s Arrow,” digital time in Wachowskis’ “The Matrix” and Lively’s “Moon Tiger” etc.

“Life is like a box of timelines” – Complex Narratives in Television Series

The module will address complex narratives, that is, narratives that play with chronological time and feature an elaborate, interconnected network of characters and actions. The lectures will provide a cultural context of the cultural shifts which have influenced the ways in which television series are structured while the classes will concentrate on close-reading of a variety of series. We will concentrate on the narrative techniques the series use and the ways in which they represent time (for example, parallel realms in Stranger Things, Westworld, The OA and Fringe, traumatic time in Russian Doll, memories of the future in FlashForward, time travelling in Dark and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, etc.).

 

dr hab. Ireneusz Kida

Językoznawstwo diachroniczne: moduł do wyboru: 1/historia języka, 2/gramatyka historyczna, jest przedmiotem poświęconym historii języka ze szczególnym uwzględnieniem języka angielskiego w jej kontekście. Przedmiot ten ma charakter praktyczny, więc oprócz omawiania teoretycznych zagadnień związanych z początkami, rozwojem i podziałem języków świata, przewiduje możliwość nauki języka irlandzkiego, staroangielskiego, staronordyjskiego, średnioangielskiego oraz języka Tok Pisin.

 

dr Agnieszka Kliś-Brodowska

The Postmodern Fairy Tale

Was grandmother the (were)wolf? And did the girl kill her, just as Cinderella killed her first step-mother? Far from being eternally true and responding to every child’s inborn fantasies, fairy tales are a faithful mirror to the times they were composed in. From oral folk tales in which they originate to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – Blood and Wine’s magic dollhouse, they have been invariably adapted to the needs of those who spin them.

In this course, we shall concentrate on the postmodern fairy tale incarnations in English and a generation of writers represented by, among others, Angela Carter – whose Bloody Chamber will be the entrance point to our considerations – Salman Rushdie and A.S. Byatt, and look at the ways in which they contest and subvert the ‘traditional’ plots, characters and motives with the aid of magic realism and postmodern sensibility, not simply in gender terms. We will consider particular texts in reference to their ‘original/s’, or sources in a broader sense, but we will also contest the notion of the original fairy tale by looking at how particular tales changed in time together with the agendas that underpinned their rewritings. Our discussions will be aided by an introduction to the genre and the major approaches to studying fairy tales, such as those of Bruno Bettelheim, Jack Zipes and Christina Bacchilega.

The Anatomy of Taboo/An Anatomy of the Gothic

The following course is based on the eight-episode BBC One’s dramatic series Taboo (2017), starring Tom Hardy as a Gothic (anti)hero James Keziah Delaney. Basically, it poses two questions:

  • ‘What constitutes Gothic fiction?’ and
  • ‘What is the understanding of the Gothic in the present-day popular culture?’

The approach we take is that of a Gothic stock-motifs list, which means we shall attempt to list major motifs, characters, techniques and themes the Gothic relies on, but with a twist. We shall treat the series as a kind of Frankensteinian monster – composed of bits and pieces of what its creators understood to constitute Gothic fiction – and dissect it while referring to the available theory of the Gothic. With each episode, we shall discuss chosen aspects of the Gothic genre/mode as they have evolved from their early forms into their present-day TV series incarnations. We shall touch upon the traditional features (such as Levis/Radcliffe horror/terror divide, suspense, ghosts, vengeance, curse, incest, gore, women representation, etc.), discuss the impact of psychoanalysis on the perception of the genre/mode (the uncanny, the complexes, but also the taboo), and investigate into the postcolonial Gothic. We will also discuss how the monster was put together – how different generic features but also critical approaches as well as Gothic’s forms were filtered by the creators and combined in the series to constitute a scary whole, perhaps a revision of a kind – and to what effect.

The Anatomy of the Fairy Tale

Did the wolf really dress up as Granny? Was the Little Red Riding Hood really fooled? Was that her real name at all? Is Cinderella a matricide? And why does Snow White always wear red towels?

The following course focuses on the multiple incarnations of the fairy tale as a genre. From oral tales, through Basil’s and Starapola’s politically charged versions, Perrault’s and Grimm’s polished and censored rewritings, to Disney’s Princesses from Snow White to Elsa and Merida and Ubisoft Montreal’s The Child of Light, but also Angela Carter’s wolf-girls, The Path by Tale of Tales, and Dina Goldstein’s fallen princesses (https://www.dinagoldstein.com/fallen-princesses/), SurLaLune website, and many, many others, the fairy tale has been transformed, adapted, contested, subverted, relocated and remediated.  The course will include an introduction into the genre, history and theory of fairy tales and the ‘fairy tale web’ (Bacchilega); we will discuss different tales and their adaptations across centuries and media, including film, the Internet, and video games; we will also look at them from the perspective of their social and political dimension, commodity status and activist/subversive potential.

“Match Made in Hell”: Video Game Horror

As Richard Rouse once noticed, horror was simply bound to succeed once coupled with video games (“Match Made in Hell,” 2009). There simply was something in the glitchy aesthetics of early games that welcomed it heartily. Or perhaps it is a matter of the medium itself. Drawing at will from other media, engaging a plethora of available means – from input devices (game controllers) and hardware’s properties, through camera angles and music, to save points and ammo management – and utilizing the games’ potential for performance, interactivity, immersion and emotional engagement, game developers have come up with a range of scare tactics that account for a blood chilling experience.

The basic question we will aim to address in this course is: How do video games scare? In trying to answer it, we will not only have a look at a selection of games; the course will comprise an introduction into the history of horror games and a selection of academic approaches to digital horror, such as Bernard Perron’s critical analysis of the Silent Hill series. We shall discuss the attempts at defining the genre and its possible subdivisions, look at the literary and film/cinematic influences, and review a range of scare tactics innate in the medium, comprising such areas as gameplay emotions, the presentation of game’s environment, PC’s actions, timing or enemies design, among many others.

 

dr hab. Marzena Kubisz

Veganism(s) and Their Contexts. Food, Resistance and Human-Animal Relations in Culture and Literature

The aim of the course is not to convert students to vegan diet but rather to reveal the ways in which western culture constructs a diversity of meanings around food, meat eating and abstention from meat. The course will explore the richness of forms veganism takes in contemporary culture and the ways it is represented in film, literature, art and new media. It will provide students with an understanding of the history of abstention from meat eating in western culture (from ancient philosophers to contemporary thinkers), psychology of meat eating (carnism and neocarnism), gendered food (do real man eat tofu?), animal rights (speciesism and anthropocentrism), the place of veganism in the academy (the rise of vegan studies) and the connections between food and late capitalism, globalization and environment. Seen from the perspectives of ecocriticism, feminism or postcolonial studies veganism turns out to be an important strategy of cultural and political resistance.

 

dr Marek Kulisz

English modernist literature 

Classes will be devoted to theAanalysis of selected poems, short stories, and novels written in the first half of the 20th century. Since major poets and novelists of that time wrote their works in conscious opposition to Victorian literature, the course’s main purpose will be to show in what way the new avant-garde writers distanced themselves from what they considered to be an outdated mode of seeing and presenting the world. Textual analysis will consist in detailed study of new narrative techniques which were created in the first decades of the 20th century, and which were considered to be better narrative tools. Another important issue taken up during the classes will be the modernist writers’ awareness of the quickly changing reality in its social, political, and cultural aspects, and the ways in which this awareness found its reflection in their works.

Analyzed will be the works of the following writers: R. Kipling, J.Conrad, T.S.Eliot, J.Joyce, V.Woolf, A.Huxley, G.Orwell.

 

dr Karolina Lebek

Hauntings: the literature of the ghostly in the 19th and early 20th century

The course offers students a survey of the literary motif of haunting with a selection of short fiction ranging from the early 19th century to roughly the 1920s. Apart from tracing a strong tradition of hauntings in various inflections and guises, the course aims to show how the figure of the ghost resonates with contemporaneous cultural and social contexts. This perspective shows how the experience of haunting reflects such issues as intimacy, cohabitation, memory, materiality and spirituality, power relations, gender and race, colonialism and capitalism, as well as comments on the horror of the First World War.

 

dr Anna Malinowska

Mediating the media

The aim of the course is to rethink “the media” and examine their contexts along old and merging media phenomena, media devices and media things in the transforming technological environment for a better understanding of human current condition. We tend to think of the media as “an extension” of man that we have familiarized in practice. We therefore think to know what we are talking about when we use the word “media” and understand its complexity. And yet, “the media” is a difficult problem whose comprehension slips practical and theoretical uses that seem to have chased one another since the expansion of the media and media criticism that followed. The rise of media studies as a discipline creates space for revisiting and revising the media and their criticism from the perspective of the media themselves. This course will be an opportunity to look at the media as a subject of theoretical practice and part of human evolution. It will allow for an insight into a “classic” media theory but approached critically and verified by the transformation of human relationship with technology. The title of the course – “Mediating the Media” – renders a dual inflection to think of the media as a mediating tool and the subject of mediation whose meditative nature is being mediated along the critical and practical uses.

Required Texts

The list of required texts will be announced at the course’s opening session.

(We will utilize Canvas as the main portal for the class. All class materials will be available there).

Course Requirements

  • Attendance (as specified by the Code of Studies and the course related regulations).
  • Participation: This is a reading and discussion based seminar. Preparation is essential for each class anad the inclass discussions is where we do most of our work.
  • Paper/project: For this seminar students will undertake a research paper or project. The guidelines for these will be outlined in a separate handout. A paper means a dissertation of 6000 words. A project means a presentation accompanied by a short written statement of about 3000 words. All topics must discussed and approved by me prior to their submission (the same relates to the choice of paper/project area/theme).

Grades

All grades are final and are not subject to change. Failure to complete a major course assignment may result in the failure of the course as a whole.

Conduct

All students are expected to behave in compliance with The Code of Studies and the course related regulations.

 

dr hab. Sławomir Masłoń

Michelangelo Antonioni in the English-Speaking World

The module will be devoted to the presentation and interpretation of the films by Michelangelo Antonioni made in English in non-Italian locations (London, California, Africa, Spain) for Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer (Blow-Up, Zabriskie Point, The Passenger) as well as the background to these films in Antonioni’s Italian tetralogy (L’avvenura, La notte, L’eclisse, Deserto rosso)

Revolt Incorporated: New Cinemas of the 1960s

The course aims at introducing the students to the most explosive and innovative decade in the history of the world cinema by examining the most influential movies of the period against the political and cultural context, changes in film technology and the industry’s economics.

A Mind in Exile: The World of Vladimir Nabokov

The module will be devoted to presentation and interpretation of selected works by Vladimir Nabokov in order to reconstruct a dialectics at work between his Russian and cosmopolitan literary heritage.

Tradition and Its Excrements

The module will be devoted to the question of possible meanings and consistency of the concept of (esp. literary) tradition in the 20th and 21st centuries and to various attempts to sabotage, erase or displace it.

Tradition and Its Excrements

The module will be devoted to the question of possible meanings and consistency of the concept of (esp. literary) tradition in the 20th and 21st centuries and to various attempts to sabotage, erase or displace it.

Michelangelo Antonioni in the English-Speaking World

The module will be devoted to the presentation and interpretation of the films Michelangelo Antonioni made in English for Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer (Blow-Up, Zabriskie Point, The Passenger) as well as the background to these films in Antonioni’s Italian tetralogy (L’avvenura, La notte, L’eclisse, Deserto rosso).

Revolt Incorporated: New Cinemas of the 1960s

The course aims at introducing the students to the most explosive and innovative decade in the history of the world cinema by examining the most influential movies of the period against the political and cultural context, changes in film technology and the industry’s economics.

A Mind in Exile: The World of Vladimir Nabokov

The module will be devoted to presentation and interpretation of selected works by Vladimir Nabokov in order to reconstruct a dialectics at work between his Russian and cosmopolitan literary heritage.

Michelangelo Antonioni in the English-Speaking World

The module will be devoted to the presentation and interpretation of the films Michelangelo Antonioni made in English for Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer (Blow-Up, Zabriskie Point, The Passenger) as well as the background to these films in Antonioni’s Italian tetralogy (L’avvenura, La notte, L’eclisse, Deserto rosso).

 

dr Marcin Mazurek

Utopia and Dystopia in Literature, Film and Theory 

The module’s purpose is to analyse selected examples of both literary and cinematic utopias and dystopias in view of their conceptual assumptions and – in case of utopias – their failures resulting in blurring the boundary between utopian ideals and dystopian, or anti-utopian outcomes. The texts and films under scrutiny include both classic literary representations and contemporary visions, which are all located within relevant theoretical contexts, including dystopian undertones in particular theoretical approaches.

 

dr hab. Jacek Mydla

The Contemporary Mystery Thriller (Współczesny thriller kryminalny: tajemnica i suspens)

The course is devoted to contemporary British, Irish and American crime fiction. In class discussions we will discuss chosen 21st-century novels by British, Irish and American authors who represent the genre (e.g. Robert Galbraith / J.K. Rowling, Peter May, Brian McGilloway, Dennis Lehane, John Connolly). Students’ suggestions are very welcome.

Here are some of the things we will talk about:

  • how the novels reflect our anxieties: violence against women and child abuse, social inequalities, gender relations, immigration and ethnic diversity, mass communication and social media
  • the literary devices used to create and sustain mystery and suspense
  • varieties within the genre and conventions (e.g. Gothic, supernatural, police procedure)
  • elements of forensic science
  • the specific local and national flavours and colours by which the individual authors and their novels differ from one another

Shakespeare – text-interpretation-adaptation 

The course is devoted to one Shakespeare play, and the students are welcome to chose which of the plays they want to work with throughout the semester.

The lectures will be concerned with the broader context: literary-historical (e.g. the conventions of Elizabethan drama) and theoretical (e.g. the functioning of language in drama).

In our class discussions we will close-read selected scenes, in order, first of all, to understand the textual meaning and then, on that basis, to reconstruct stage action. This in turn will allow us critically to examine existing theatrical and film adaptations of the play.

Gothic narratives 

The course is devoted to narrative structures typical of so-called literary Gothic, which combine mystery and terror. Gothic narrative progression consists in unveiling past mysteries as a process which affects the protagonist’s sense of identity. The protagonist typically is cast in the role of an investigator, professional or not. As literary material for this course we examine a selection of texts, both classical and contemporary.

 

dr Ewa Myrczek-Kadłubicka

Tłumaczenie konsekutywne (teksty prawnicze)

Celem zajęć jest rozszerzenie wiedzy i umiejętności studentów w zakresie tłumaczenia tekstów o charakterze specjalistycznym ze szczególnym naciskiem na teksty prawne i prawnicze. Na zajęciach poruszane są  kwestie związane z odpowiednim zastosowaniem technik i strategii w tłumaczeniu konsekutywnym, jak również właściwym przygotowaniem merytorycznym do tłumaczenia prawniczego. W trakcie zajęć studenci  zapoznają się zasadami obowiązującymi w tłumaczeniu poświadczonym. Ponadto nabywają umiejętność weryfikacji terminologii i samodzielnego wyszukiwania ekwiwalentów w kontekście tłumaczenia tekstów prawnych i prawniczych.

 

dr hab. Małgorzata Nitka

The victorian novel in context 

The aim of the course is to critically examine a selection of 19th-century novels in their cultural context so as to trace the links between the Victorian Age and modernity. Along the major subject areas such as e.g. class, gender, law or science, technology, as presented in literary fiction and complementary historical and critical material, there will be discussed diverse narrative strategies employed by the chosen Victorian novelists. The reading list features works of such authors as Elizabeth Gaskell, Charlotte Brontë, Wilkie Collins, Arthur Conan Doyle, and Herbert George Wells.

The above mentioned names are a suggestion, the modification of the reading list so as to include different 19th-century writers is possible, but the reading list for the course will contain no more than 5 items. The emphasis is on thoroughness rather than quantity.

 

dr Katarzyna Papaja

Glottodydaktyka (Trudności w uczeniu się i nauczaniu języków obcych)

Zajęcia mają na celu pogłębienie i poszerzenie wiedzy studentów na temat procesu dydaktycznego języka obcego, ze szczególnym uwzględnieniem trudności napotykanych przez ucznia na różnych etapach nauki języka obcego. Celem zajęć jest również rozwinięcie umiejętności właściwej oceny sytuacji dydaktycznych oraz zastosowania odpowiednich strategii zaradczych. Poruszane zagadnienia obejmują m.in.:

  • Nauczanie języka obcego uczniów o specjalnych potrzebach edukacyjnych –charakterystyka  typów uczniów o specjalnych potrzebach (m.in. uczeń językowo utalentowany, uczeń z dysleksją, ADHD i Syndromem Aspergera, uczeń z doświadczeniem migracji),  przedstawianie najczęstszych problemów i najbardziej efektywnych strategii zaradczych.
  • Wpływ czynników indywidualnych na rozwój kompetencji językowej (stres, lęk przed komunikacją).
  • Utrata kompetencji w języku rodzimym pod wpływem języka drugiego.
  • Emocje a proces uczenia się języka obcego. Wpływ czynników afektywnych na proces uczenia się języka obcego.
  • Demotywacja wśród uczniów.

 

dr Adam Pluszczyk

Odmiany języka angielskiego

Celem zajęć jest zapoznanie z różnymi odmianami oraz dialektami języka angielskiego oraz ich cechami. Zajęcia są poświęcone odmianom języka z punktu widzenia regionalnego (zróżnicowanie regionalne, cechy języka) oraz społecznego (dialektologia, socjolingwistyka). Zostaną omówione różne pojęcia związane z tematyką, np.: język, dialekt, akcent, idiolekt, żargon, slang, odmiana, dialekt standardowy, niestandardowy, prestiżowy, regionalny, społeczny, zróżnicowanie / wariancja, zjawisko hiperpoprawności, język a dyskryminacja, kod językowy, zmiana, język i kultura, tożsamość kulturowa, język i płeć, różnice językowe ze względu na płeć, styl, rejestr, wariancja (badania), kompetencja pragmatyczna, socjolingwistyczna oraz wiele innych aspektów związanych z problematyką zróżnicowania językowego.

 

dr Agnieszka Podruczna

World Science Fiction

Contrary to the popular opinion, science fiction can tell us more about the contemporary world as well as its past than it can about the future it is supposed to predict. At the same time, as the genre continues to grow in popularity, so does the number of different voices it attempts to represent. Following this logic, the course will focus on primarily non-Western approaches to the speculative fiction genre across different media (literature, film, comic books, video games). Characterized by their counter-discursive potential, these works of fiction by authors originating from Africa, Asia, Australia, South America as well as the indigenous and diasporic communities of North America engage in a dialogue with the mainstream narratives proposed by the genre, to arrive at a variety of hybrid forms and modes that fully utilize both the transformative potential of the genre and the non-Western influences and points of view. To this end, the course will look into the emerging hybrid modes and narratives, mapping the ways in which they intersect with both the mainstream works of science fiction as well as various theoretical approaches, including postcolonial theory, ecocriticism, feminist theory, posthumanism, queer studies, and other. Starting with a brief overview of the theoretical aspects of science fiction writing as well its cultural importance as a genre, the course will then move on to weekly discussions concerning the selected reading, including writers and creators such as N.K. Jemisin, Nalo Hopkinson, Elaine Cuyegkeng, Eden Robinson, Nnedi Okorafor, Vandana Singh, Wanuri Kahiu, Rivers Solomon or Larissa Lai.

 

dr Marcin Sarnek

David Simon and the idea of American Progress

The idea of “progress” permeates the works of David Simon. An acclaimed journalist, non-fiction writer, and creator of celebrated TV shows (Homicide, The Corner, The Wire, Generation Kill, Treme, Show Me a Hero, and The Deuce), Simon has earned a position of a vital commentator of the American experiment, amongst nation’s most demanded intellectuals: those capable of demanding radical progressive change, while maintaining a fundamental accessibility of their work. Simon’s angry, often dark, but also hilarious and deeply ironic fiction represents what’s best in American popular and high culture. His most important work to date – The Wire – is referred to as “probably the best TV show ever made” by nearly every single academic or journalistic text that discusses it.

Simon’s multifaceted progressive obsessions will be analyzed on varied levels. One of these is the construction of the narrative, which – while often cyclical, intertextual, and thematically and structurally rich in classical generic associations, is always directed towards experimentation. Another progressive aspect of his work is the management of technical development, which is often paradoxical (and often consciously anachronistic), but always at the center of attention. Most significantly, though, Simon’s works are always focused on social progress. It is not, however, a calm and quiet progressive discourse that interests Simon. Rather, it is the loud and frequently naturalistically brutal demand for change, together with a coherent artistic vision, that have managed to turn the outbursts of creative anger into a true American institution that David Simon is today.

During the course students will be expected to read fragments of Simon’s non-fiction books and watch a selection of his televisual work, as well as work with selected academic texts. Most importantly, however, students will be expected to come with an open mind and ready to embrace the world of one of the most significant American authors of the early 21 century.

 

dr hab.Eugenia Sojka

(De)constructing canadianness.  Revisiting  mythologies of Canada 

This interdisciplinary course is designed to explore literary and cultural texts (including film and visual arts) of several minority groups in Canada with reference to changing mythologies of Canadianness. It focuses on dominant Canadian narratives of nationhood and their distinctiveness within the North American model. Exploring the concepts of nationhood, citizenship,  cultural identity, diaspora, multiculturality,  transculturality,  ethnicization and  racialization, as well as various minoritarian strategies of self-representation, it shows how visible and invisible minority writers, artists and filmmakers re-read and re-write the mainstream mythologies of Canada.

Re-imagining “indians”.  Indigenous  self-representation in Canadian culture and literature.

The course focuses on the postcolonial / decolonial analysis of  selected examples of cultural and  literary representations of Indigenous people of Canada. First it examines various types of their colonial misrepresentation in the mainstream Canadian painting,  photography, film and literature, and then it proceeds to the exploration of self-representation by selected Indigenous artists and writers in a variety of discourses showing the role of Indigenous artistic expression in the processes of decolonization and re-imagining/ re-visioning of Indigeneity.

 

dr hab. Agnieszka Solska

Relevant ambiguities: their interpretation, appreciation, use 

The monographic lecture “Relevant ambiguities: their interpretation, appreciation, use” focuses on the utterances which exploit linguistic ambiguity to communicate meanings. Drawing mainly from Sperber and Wilson’s (1986/1995) Relevance Theory it presents the formal and semantic features of the so-called “relevant ambiguities”, i.e. mainly puns and other kinds of wordplays, and outlines the interpretative path followed by their comprehenders. Using diverse socio-pragmatic models of communication it examines the role they play in interpersonal communication as well as their cultural embedding. Morever, it investigates the causes of the strong affective reactions “relevant ambiguities” tend to evoke in their recipients.

 

dr Bartosz Stopel

Nation of rebels: American counterculture from romanticism, through hippies to Silicon Valley

The focus of the course is to explore the ways in which the numerous phenomena labelled as the 1960s hippie revolution affected American society and Western culture in general. American culture has embraced the spirit of rebelliousness as its core value perhaps since its inception by the dissenting Pilgrim Fathers, through Revolutionary War, Civil War and other events, yet is the cultural revolution of the pacifist hippies that has produced the most lasting effects on contemporary Western World.

I will aim to show how the diverse movements within the 1960s Flower Power revolution shaped our contemporary realities (including lifestyle, consumer patterns, politics, human and civil rights, women’s and minority rights, environmentalism, drug culture, teenage culture, online communities and subcultures, internet and high tech industry, music, film and others). Apart from that, the course will also offer some general historical background of post-war American society and trace how certain core American values and ideas, which lay at the heart of the 1960s counterculture evolved from 19th century (and beyond) to contemporary times.

The material for analysis and discussion will vary greatly and will include fiction, documentary films, feature films, popular magazines and journalism, music, history, advertising, along with some essays on cultural theory. The tracing of countercultural ideas will involve reading some classical American authors, such as Emerson, Thoreau, or Whitman. The 1950s and 1960s literature will include (but will not limit itself to) J.D. Salinger, J. Kerouac and A. Ginsberg. Popular culture will be prominent, especially ways in which the emerging rebellious teenager culture appropriated certain 1950s films and their stars’ image (e.g. James Dean, Marlon Brando and even Audrey Hepburn) and later transformed cinema by starting the New Hollywood movement (including films like The Graduate, Bonnie and Clyde, Easy Rider and others). Music will be crucial, especially the massive musical/cultural revolution started by the emergence of rock’n’roll, Bob Dylan and The Beatles that accompanied the birth of teenager culture.

After reviewing the roots and the various manifestations of the youth revolution both in literature, films and in non-fiction, the course will proceed to assess the troubled legacy which the hippies have left American (and Western) culture. This would include exploring countercultural ideology, tropes and motifs one might find in contemporary pop-culture and on the other hand, investigating how the hippies shaped our identity, lifestyle, politics and consumer behavior. Finally, and paradoxically, the hippies also inspired cyberculture, inventing both hacker ethics and Silicon Valley tech giants, but they also significantly contributed to the development of online culture wars and alt-right.

 

Dr Julia Szołtysek

Contemporary Literatures in English: Revisionings and Continuations

The course will aim at determining the defining trends in contemporary literatures written in English, with a view to critically comparing them and analysing their socio-cultural implications. The authors of the selected novels come from diverse cultural backgrounds and profess a range of literary and artistic interests and motivations, the patterns of which will be the focus of class discussions during the course.

Primary sources:

  • Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale (1985)
  • Edward St. Aubyn, Patrick Melrose novels – selected (1992 – 2012)
  • Andre Aciman, Call Me By Your Name (2007)
  • Eimear McBride, The Lesser Bohemians (2017)
  • Otessa Moshfegh, My Year of Rest and Relaxation (2018)

Ballads of East and West: Visions of Intercultural Encounters in Selected 20th Century English Novels

The course will aim at retracing the directions in which selected 20th century English and American authors went about representing modes of intercultural encounters between the broadly understood constructs of Occident and Orient. Class activities and discussions will be designed to expand and promote students’ understanding of the problematics, with a view to determining and analysing the impact of works grounded in the dynamics of Orientalism and post/colonialism.

Primary sources:

  • Virginia Woolf, Orlando (1928)
  • Agatha Christie, Murder in Mesopotamia (1936)
  • Paul Bowles, The Sheltering Sky (1949)
  • Rose Macaulay, The Towers of Trebizond (1956)

Ballads of East and West: Visions of Inter-Cultural Encounters in Selected 20th Century English Novels

The course will aim at retracing the directions in which selected 20th century English and American authors went about representing modes of intercultural encounters between the broadly understood constructs of Occident and Orient. Class activities and discussions will be designed to expand and promote students’ understanding of the problematics, with a view to determining and analysing the impact of works grounded in the dynamics of Orientalism and post/colonialism.

Primary sources:

  • Virginia Woolf, Orlando (1928)
  • Agatha Christie, Murder in Mesopotamia (1936)
  • Paul Bowles, The Sheltering Sky (1949)
  • Rose Macaulay, The Towers of Trebizond (1956)

 

Fiction and Films: Evil Twins? Challenges of Film Adaptations

The proposed course will be devoted to critical comparisons and analyses of selected novels written in English and their film adaptations. The chosen texts share a common ‘Oriental’ interest, both in terms of  their geographical settings, as well as with regards to the plots and the characters which appear in them. Class discussions will aim at elucidating these Oriental motifs and tropes, and evaluating whether or not the film directors who took up the tasks of adapting the novels for the screen rose up to the challenges posed by such thematically and frequently also politically charged source materials.

Sources – novels followed by their respective film adaptations:

  1. Orlando
  • Virginia Woolf, 1928
  • Sally Potter, 1992
  1. The Sheltering Sky
  • Paul Bowles, 1949
  • Bernardo Bertolucci, 1990
  1. Hideous Kinky
  • Esther Freud, 1992
  • Gillies and Billy MacKinnon, 1998
  1. Holy Smoke
  • Anna Campion, 1999
  • Jane and Anna Campion, 1999

 

dr Agnieszka Woźniakowska

American Drama

The module focuses on American drama in the 20th century. Its aim is to present and examine selected plays in their historical, social and cultural context. It will discuss changes which have taken place in American theatre and drama from the first decade of the 20th century to the present day. Playwrights whose dramas will be discussed include Eugene O’Neill, Thornton Wilder, Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, Edward Albee, David Mamet, Woody Allen.

 

American Modernism

The course focuses on the period of modernism in American literature. Its aim is to present historical, social, cultural, and literary events which transformed life in America at that time. Students will discuss changes which took place in American theatre and drama in the mid-war period and talk about new directions in poetry and fiction. Selected works of the following authors will be discussed: William Faulkner, Ernest Hemingway, John Steinbeck, F.S. Fitzgerald, Eugene O’Neill, T.S. Eliot, Maxwell Anderson, Ezra Pound, Amy Lowell, e.e. cummings, Wallace Stevens, Zora Neale Huston, Langston Hughes.

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