Postcolonial Literatures

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Postcolonial Literatures

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    English, Literature

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    18 200-level ENGL points

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    Twentieth-century literatures in English from Africa, Canada, the Caribbean, England, New Zealand and the South Pacific, emphasising the forms of cultural encounter and response arising from colonial expansion and from contemporary contexts of travel and writing.
    Some of the most innovative and challenging twentieth-century literature in English has been produced in response to the experience and legacy of British colonisation, giving rise to a phenomenon we refer to as postcolonial literature. This course offers a selection of fictional and dramatic works in English by writers from Africa, Canada, the Caribbean, England, New Zealand and the South Pacific. They present narratives of, and responses to, colonial encounters among peoples, traditions and ideas, the complex processes and effects of decolonisation, and the legacies of colonialism in contemporary individual and/or collective cultural experience. With reference to some of the key figures and essays in postcolonial theory, the course focuses readings of these fictional works on the ways that literature can creatively negotiate relations between politics, ethics and poetics across a variety of colonial and postcolonial contexts.

    Course Reader: Postcolonial Theory (Available from Print Shop)
    Conrad, Joseph. Edited Knowles, O. & Hampson, R. Heart of Darkness & The Congo Diary (Penguin Classics)
    Kincaid, Jamaica. Lucy (Farrar Straus and Giroux)
    Fugard, Athol. Statements (Theatre Communications)
    Hau'ofa, Epeli. Tales of the Tikongs (University of Hawaii Press)
    Kureishi, Hanif. Buddha of Suburbia (Faber & Faber)
    Atwood, Margaret. Bodily Harm (Vintage)
    Frame, Janet. Carpathians (Random House)

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

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Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.