Studying English Literature means reading a lot of books (obviously) and hence involves buying a lot of books too! In today’s post, I’m going to talk you through the books I am / will be studying in my second year of university.
Contemporary Poetry Module :
Having never studied contemporary poetry before, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from this module. However, after taking it for four weeks now I can tell you that it’s an extremely eclectic mix of various forms of poetry from a variety of English speaking countries. The two anthologies I am studying from are below:
The Bloodaxe Book of 20th Century Poetry from Britain and Ireland Edited by Edna Longley
The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Poetry Edited by J.D McClatchy
Romantic Poetry Module:
I decided to take a romantic poetry module this year as I loved studying it in my English Literature A Level. At A Level we focused very heavily on Keats, hardly touched Wordsworth and definitely didn’t look in depth at any female writers. If I’m honest, I wasn’t aware of any prominent female writers in the romantic era, but since studying this module I have come to learn that in fact there were many and they were very popular at the time!
For this module I only have one book, but it’s possibly the largest, thickest and heaviest book I now own:
Romanticism: An Anthology (Blackwell Anthologies)
Girls (Novels and Non-Fiction) Module:
I am yet to start this module but have already made progress with my reading for it. As I can’t tell you what I’ve learnt from this module yet, I’m going to talk to you about the individual texts below:
The Accidental by Ali Smith – Having read and enjoyed Girl Meets Boy last year, I expected to enjoy this novel also. I was wrong. The Accidental centres around a family who are on holiday and take in a stranger. The premise sounds interesting! Yet, nothing really happens in this book. I didn’t feel as though there was any momentum to it and finished it feeling disappointed and unfulfilled.
Grace, Tamar and Lazlo the Beautiful by Deborah Kay Davies – Another interesting one. This is a book of short stories, in chronological order, looking at the relationship between two sisters. Some stories in this book were extremely odd and slightly disturbing. So again, I didn’t really enjoy reading this book either. However, the book is very thin so was a quick read!
Bad Blood by Lorna Sage – An autobiography of a girl recollecting on her relationship with her grandparents, parents and her first steps into the world of romance. I found this book to be quite dragging, I became bored with the details of her childhood and family life, and having read a synopsis online I was eager for her to begin talking about her teenage pregnancy. Sage eventually does talk about this experience but not for very long. In my personal opinion I think more focus on her pregnancy and motherhood at a young age would have made this book far more gripping.
Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel – This is another autobiography, however it differs from the previous as this is written in comic format. In all honesty, I’m confused as to why a comic novel is on my English Literature degree. I enjoyed the subject matter of this but I wasn’t so sure on the comic format.
Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi – This one is still on my to be read list so I cannot tell you much, other than it is another autobiography written in comic format.
Tipping The Velvet by Sarah Watersm – A normal novel!! Again, this is on my to be read list so as of yet I have nothing to comment on.
Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding – The reason I picked this module! Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE Bridget Jones! I can’t even count how many times I have watched the films! I read the first book in the series about two years ago for the first time and really enjoyed it so can’t wait to read it again! P.S. Bridget Jones is the best rom-com of all time and I won’t accept any other answers!
Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham – The final book I am ‘hauling’ today. Again, I read this a couple of years ago (knowing nothing more than Lena Dunham was friends with Taylor Swift)! I really enjoyed this autobiography, it’s really light-hearted and talks about a lot of issues that face young women today.
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning which books I am studying this year for my English Literature degree! Tell me in the comments below what books you’re studying this term!