26027 - The Revision Of The Body In Women's Literature

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Francesco Cattani

  • Credits 6

  • SSD L-LIN/10

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures

  • Language English

  • Campus of Bologna

  • Degree Programme Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Modern, Post-Colonial and Comparative Literatures (cod. 0981)

  • Teaching resources on Virtuale

  • Course Timetable from Sep 29, 2021 to Nov 10, 2021

SDGs

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Quality education Gender equality Reduced inequalities Life on land

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

Students acquire knowledge of gender studies (theories and methodologies) in diverse cultural contexts whereby the notions of identity and otherness, difference and diversity are analysed with specific reference to the politics of the body. The course intends to favour the capability to deconstruct these notions in diverse texts (theoretical, literary, visual).

Course contents

The Politics of the body and the (new) ways of being (non)human

Focusing on literary texts, with specific reference to dystopian and science-fiction novels, the course will discuss diverse politics of the body in feminist, postcolonial, decolonial and posthuman critical theories.

In particular, the course will tackle the historical and discursive construction and "framing" (J. Butler) of the non-human, exposing the body as a crucial issue in the redefinition of the human/posthuman/transhuman and questioning the possibility of imagining an episteme that expands the very category of the human, not only to those subjectivities that have never had complete access to it (R. Braidotti), but also to a series of new "bodies" that have never been associated with the idea of human, and therefore of life.

The program is in progress. Please do check this webpage for further notice

Readings/Bibliography

Bibliography

Primary Sources:

Atwood, Margaret, The Handmaid's Tale, 1985

Ishiguro, Kazuo, Never Let me Go, 2005

Winterson, Janette, Frankissstein: A Love Story, 2019

Bibliography of Secondary texts:

Baccolini, Raffaella, “Gender and Genre in the Feminist Critical Dystopias of Katharine Burdekin, Margaret Atwood, and Octavia Butler”, Future Females, The Next Generation: New Voices and Velocities in Feminist Science Fiction Criticism, Ed. Marleen S. Barr, Lanham, Rowman & Littlefield, 2000. 13-34.

Braidotti, Rosi, The Posthuman, Polity Press, 2013. (In particular: Introduction; Chapter 1 "Post-Humanism: Life beyond the Self"; Chapter 2 "Post-Anthropocentrism: Life beyond the Species")

Butler, Judith, “Introduction: Precarious Life, Grievable Life”, Frames of War: When Is Life Grievable?, London-New York, Verso, 2009, pp. 1-32.

Butler, Judith, “Preface”, Precarious Life: The Powers of Mourning and Violence, London-New York, Verso, 2006, pp. xi-xxi.

Fanon, Frantz, “Introduction”, Black Skin, White Masks, London, Pluto Press, 2008; First ed. Peau Noire, Masques Blancs, Paris, Éditions du Seuil, 1952; pp. 1-7.

Lugones, María, "Toward a Decolonial Feminism", Hypatia , Vol. 25, No. 4, 2010, pp. 742-759.

Monticelli, Rita, The Politics of the Body in Women’s Literature, Bologna: Odoya, 2012.

Spillers, Hortense J. “Mama's Baby, Papa's Maybe: An American Grammar Book”, in Diacritics. A Review of ContemporaryCriticism17 (2), 1987, pp. 65-81; Italian version: “Figli/e di madre, del padre forse: una grammatica Americana”, in Critiche femministe e teorie letterarie. A cura di Raffaella Baccolini; M. Giulia Fabi, Vita Fortunati, Rita Monticelli, Bologna, CLUEB, 1997, pp. 255-279, trad. Lucia Gunella e Rita Monticelli.

Spivak, Gayatri C., “Can The Subaltern Speak?”, Colonial Discourse and Post- colonial Theory: a Reader, edited by Laura Chrisman and Patrick Williams, New York, Sidney, Harvester Wheatsheaf, 1993, pp. 66- 111.

Bibliography and further information will be provided also during the lessons (and then published in the online reading list and program). Students who cannot attend lessons must contact the lecturer via e-mail before the end of the course. Students are requested to check the online program also during the course for further notice and information.

B.A students are not admitted. Erasmus students are requested to contact the lecturer before enrolling in the course.

Teaching methods

Important Notice:

L’Università di Bologna, per garantire alle studentesse e agli studenti il normale svolgimento del proprio percorso di studio, erogherà la didattica in modalità mista anche nel primo semestre dell’a.a. 2021/22.
Le lezioni di tutti i corsi di studio saranno quindi disponibili in presenza e a distanza.

To ensure students can continue their normal study activities, the University of Bologna will offer blended teaching activities also during the first semester of the 2021/22 academic year.
All the lectures will therefore be held both in classrooms and online.

Lessons, seminars, discussion, students' presentations. Languages: English

 

Assessment methods

Students are requested to analyse the 3 primary sources and articles/essays/chapters (about 150 pages not from a single volume) from the Reading list of the Secondary sources.

Please do check this web page for further notice and information

Active participation in class discussions: 30%. By participation in class we mean the ability of the student to enter the debates, contributing with questions and/or elaborations of the topics proposed by the lecturer. This participation does not aim at testing students' specific preparation in the field, rather, they want to favor their ability to take part in discussions and their capability to discuss in group.

Final oral exams: 70%

The final oral exam will test the student's critical capability, their knowledge of the methodologies employed, their ability to combine theories with the analyses of the case studies chosen. The close reading of the texts aims at showing the student's critical ability, their knowledge not only of the texts but also of their context of creation together with the cultural politics that inform them. Students are requested to use an appropriate language, to be able to articulate their thought in English and Italian (high level) and to have an accurate knowledge of the bibliography chosen for the exam.

Grades:

Excellent: Students' high capability to elaborate on the exiting debates on the topics chosen, originality of thought and excellent knowledge of the theories and of the texts chosen for the exam, their ability to read them within a gender perspective, using also the theories employed during the course and showing comprehension of the bibliography chosen, accurate and appropriate language.

Very good level: Students' capability to elaborate on the exiting debates on the topics chosen, originality of thought and very good knowledge of the theories and of the texts chosen for the exam, their ability to read them within a gender perspective, using also the theories employed during the course and showing comprehension of the bibliography chosen, and appropriate, accurate language.

Good level: Students' capability to elaborate on the exiting debates on the topics chosen, knowledge of the theories and of the texts chosen for the exam, their ability to read them within a gender perspective, using also the theories employed during the course and showing comprehension of the bibliography chosen, and appropriate language.

Pass: Students' capability to enter the exiting debates on the topics chosen, knowledge of the theories and of the texts chosen for the exam, their ability to read them within a gender perspective, using also the theories employed during the course and showing comprehension of the bibliography chosen, and appropriate language.

Fail: Student's lack of knowledge of the theories employed during the course, incapability to critical reading of the novels, inappropriate and inaccurate language.

Please do check this web page for further notice and information

Teaching tools

slides, videos

Office hours

See the website of Francesco Cattani