First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Human and Social Sciences and Cultural Heritage
Course unit
LE02104370, A.A. 2018/19

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2017/18

Information on the course unit
Degree course First cycle degree in
SU2294, Degree course structure A.Y. 2016/17, A.Y. 2018/19
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 9.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination ANGLO-AMERICAN LITERATURE
Website of the academic structure
Department of reference Department of Linguistic and Literary Studies
E-Learning website
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction English, Italian
Single Course unit The Course unit CANNOT be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit is available ONLY for students enrolled in LINGUE, LETTERATURE E MEDIAZIONE CULTURALE (Ord. 2016)

Teacher in charge ANNA SCACCHI L-LIN/11

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Core courses L-LIN/11 Anglo-American Languages and Literature 9.0

Course unit organization
Period Second semester
Year 2nd Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 9.0 63 162.0 No turn

Start of activities 25/02/2019
End of activities 14/06/2019
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2018 course timetable

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
2 1819 01/10/2018 30/11/2019 SCACCHI ANNA (Presidente)
OBOE ANNALISA (Membro Effettivo)
1 1718 01/10/2017 30/11/2018 SCACCHI ANNA (Presidente)
OBOE ANNALISA (Membro Effettivo)

Prerequisites: Students should be able to read and discuss primary and secondary sources in English.
Target skills and knowledge: Students will become familiar with the most important themes and historical events in the cultural life of the US, from the colonial era to the beginning of the Twentieth century. They will be able to understand the historical evolution of and evaluate critically the American racial discourse as represented in a number of literary texts and films. They will acquire a good level of competence in the analysis of literary, filmic, and visual texts and they will be able to critically connect them to their historical context.
Examination methods: Mid-term written exam (optional). Final oral exam in English.
Assessment criteria: Evaluation will be based on the student's ability to critically discuss crucial aspects of US culture in their literary representations and from a historical point of view. Students should also be able to analyze texts from multiple points of view (form, meaning, context), referring to the critical essays included in the reading list.
Course unit contents: Racial Discourse in American Literature and Culture

After a first introductory module, which will deal with central themes in the construction of American national identity, the course will focus on the centrality of race in the US and how the American racial discourse has evolved from the abolition of slavery to the contemporary years. Literary texts, specifically a selection of short stories and a novel, as well as films, documentaries and popular culture will offer the students ground for the analysis and discussion of such cultural myths as the tragic mulatto, the white savior, the black beast, the faithful mammy, and deep insights into such issues as miscegenation/racial purity, colorism, interracial relationships, cultural appropriation and so on.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: Teaching will be mostly based on lectures, but you will be encouraged to participate in the critical reading of the texts, which means that you should come to class having read them, at least partially. The course schedule will be uploaded on Moodle before the beginning of the course. Guest speakers will offer lectures on selected topics.
Additional notes about suggested reading: Much of the reading material will be available for downloading on my Moodle page, where you will also find the definitive program and course schedule when classes begin.
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Kate Chopin, “Desiree’s Baby” (1893). --: --, --.
  • Charles W. Chesnutt, “The Wife of His Youth” (1898). --: --, --. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884). --: --, --. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Richard Wright, “Big Black Good Man” (1958). --: --, --.
  • Alice Walker, “Nineteen Fifty-five” (1981). --: --, --.
  • ZZ Packer, “Brownies” (2003). --: --, --.
  • Paul, Heike, Myths That Made America, The : An Introduction to American Studies (2013). --: --, --. a selection of chapters Cerca nel catalogo
  • Burgett, Bruce and Glenn Hendler, Keywords for American Cultural Studies (2007). --: --, --. a selection of entries
  • Langston Hughes, "Slave on the Block" (1933). --: --, --.

Innovative teaching methods: Teaching and learning strategies
  • Interactive lecturing
  • Use of online videos
  • Loading of files and pages (web pages, Moodle, ...)

Innovative teaching methods: Software or applications used
  • Moodle (files, quizzes, workshops, ...)

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Quality Education Gender Equality Reduced Inequalities Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions