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Reading Transnational Cultures (Level 5)


There are no classes currently available for registration.


Our Reading Transnational Cultures short course is designed to help you explore the ways in which culture relates to the ideas of the nation and the transnational. In doing so, we will encourage you to work with cultural artefacts which engage with more than one cultural context.

We will consider questions such as:

  • How important or restrictive is it to explore culture within a national context?
  • What does a text need to do to be described as transnational?
  • Can our understanding of these categories be transformed by our engagement with literary and film texts?
  • What are some of the multiple ways in which a text can engage with more than one culture, and are these always liberating and transformative or can they also be oppressive and reactionary?
  • How important is language to these questions?
  • Do texts have to be monolingual or does transnationality require an engagement with more than one language?

We will work together as experts in different cultural contexts to explore these ideas in relation to specific texts such as the following:

  • France and Americanisation: Jean-Luc Godard, Breathless (1960)
  • Germany and Americanisation: Wim Wenders, The American Friend (1977)
  • Enlightenment perspectives, France and England: Voltaire, Lettres philosophiques (1734) [Letters concerning the English Nation]
  • French versus American Democracy: Bernard-Henri Levy, American Vertigo: Travelling America in the Footsteps of Tocqueville (2007)
  • Colonialisms: Gilberto Freyre, The Portuguese and the Tropics (1961) and Peter Weiss, Song of the Lusitanian Bogey (1969)
  • Emigrations: João Canijo, Ganhar a Vida (2001) and Ruben Alves, The Gilded Cage (2013)

Assessment is via two 800-word tasks (25% each) and a 2500-word essay (50%).

30 credits at level 5

  • Entry requirements

    Entry requirements

    Most of our short courses have no formal entry requirements and are open to all students.

    This short course has no prerequisites.

    As part of the enrolment process, you may be required to submit a copy of a suitable form of ID.

    International students who wish to come to the UK to study a short course can apply for a Visitor visa. Please note that it is not possible to obtain a Student visa to study a short course.

  • How to apply

    How to apply

    You register directly onto the classes you would like to take. Classes are filled on a first-come, first-served basis - so apply early. If you wish to take more than one short course, you can select each one separately and then register onto them together via our online application portal. There is usually no formal selection process, although some modules may have prerequisites and/or other requirements, which will be specified where relevant.