Department of English

Faculty of Arts, Chulalongkorn University

2202441  British Fiction from the Twentieth Century to the Present


Puckpan Tipayamontri

Office: BRK 1106

Office Hours: M 13 and by appointment

Phone: 0 2218 4703


Week Design

For the final paper, you will be designing a week of the course 2202441 British Fiction from the Twentieth Century to the Present. There will be two components to the final paper: 1) the week's lesson (provide link to its online presence), and 2) the paper (e-mailed to me). Here is an opportunity to look at the overall picture of British fiction from the last century to the present, and to focus specifically on a work, a period, an issue within that literary history to tell the story of this remarkable creative production that has influenced the world, continues to do so, and is also influenced by the outrageously diverse and dynamic world in turn.

This final project is also an opportunity to assess the course. What has been skipped and skimmed over that needs more careful attention? What real world events could have been taken advantage of in the learning experience that was missed? What resources (audio, film, live theater, author invitations, guest speakers, virtual museums, online library collections, literary festivals, debate, role play, field work) could be used that hasn't? How might students be encouraged to participate, to think creatively and critically, or to make their knowledge useful to the public? What kinds of learning experiences do you want your students to have? How will you pace out the reading and learning over the Tuesday and Thursday lessons? When can students be assessed, how and how often?

The Syllabus/Lesson

Some questions to ask yourself as you design your week of British Fiction.

The Paper
Your 5–7-page paper is an argument for your week's course design. The two-day lesson needs to be fully remote-learning enabled.

Quick View

Below are some week's designs under construction. Share your ongoing project, if you like, and give feedback to other projects being developed. E-mail me your link, notes and comments so I can post them here.

Works in Progress

Link Week Designer Notes
Peer Comments
Weeks 1 and 2
  • William Hope Hodgson, "The Voice in the Night" (1907)
Panuwat: Here, I would like to insert William Hope Hodgson’s “The Voice in the Night” (1907). The short story explores themes of agnosticism, and the role of nature that challenge the rational field of science and medicine. It breaks with tradition of rational value and worth studying in this course.

Weeks 1 and 2
Pattanun: With her one short story, we can see a lot of perspectives of England during the 1910s such as the current situation, the impacts of war, the proficiency of politicians, the question of knowledge, the lack of self-reflective, the negative effects of the conformist followers and many more.

Week 3
Panas: Students would have a chance to investigate the historical events and changes in the time, and the reflection of history on the fiction works, which is selected to be horror short stories.

Week 4
  • Aldous Huxley, Brave New World (1932)
Romrawin: Despite being written almost 90 years ago, the content seems to be more relevant than ever in the world with social media, constant advertising and many technological conveniences. I wish that students can explore some similarities and differences between Brave New World and modern society.

Week 6
  • William Golding, Lord of the Flies (1954)
Onjira: Students can also discuss about the significance of the characters. Why the characters are all children when this story talks about brutality and savagery?

Week 6
  • *Alan Sillitoe, "The Fishing-Boat Picture" (1959)

Week 8
  • *Elizabeth Baines, The Birth Machine (1983)
Intukorn: The Birth Machine was and probably is considered as controversial because of its contents about disturbing imagery, labour and sexual experience. It is interesting to see the representation of women from an “indie” publication, a non-mainstream view which caused such a shocking reaction to other publications.
Week 8
Sukapinya: The reason I choose to place this book there is though Midnight's Children is undeniably a great text to explore the theme of post-colonial sensibility as we have already discussed in class, Wide Sargasso Sea, offers us a different perspective and represents the voice that might have been overlooked in the history of British Empire. Rhys who was shocked to to see Bronte’s portrayal of Bertha as a mad woman started to pen the story of Antoinette Cosway [...]

Week 8
  • *Roald Dahl, Matilda (1988)
Puthita: The difference between children and adult books is
what I want to discuss in the class.

Week 10
Narumol: I will be constantly updating the schedule in my google drive so please feel free to check and comment.
Puckpan: This is, of course, a controversial choice. How it will work depends on several factors. My comments focus on three areas:
  • Commonwealth vs. British: This has to do with both definitions and organization. In your planned discussion, you bring up a highly relevant question and also a messy one: What is British? The dictionary defines British as the UK. How will you justify extending it to the larger British empire? Also, more important than artificial boundaries, however, is relevance. How British or Commonwealth (whatever that means) is Coetzee? How South African, Dutch, or Afrikaans? What about the novel? It's characters? Context and themes? In terms of organization, aren't definitions already debated at the beginning of the semester? Why this redux? How will discussing these issues again much later in the term develop what has already been considered?
  • Sources: Why does your extensive supplementary reading list not include any Coetzee interviews or articles? This is a writer whose graduate study is in literature and has written incisively about it. Counterbalancing critics' preoccupations with Coetzee's own focus and analyses might illuminate not only the novel but also academic fashion and biases?
  • Approaches and close reading: How much do the sources you use inform your approach and close reading? Are you using it to speak about the text for you or are you using it to provide a range of perspectives with which to study the novel? Where is your own reading of the text? Most of the secondary reading dwell on issues of postcolonialism and rape. Is this all that Disgrace has to offer? How does it in fact handle issues that are the mainstays of postcolonial studies? What questions or ideas does it elaborate about rape? My suggestion is to unpack the categories and peel back critically the labels in teaching the novel. How to train your students to be independent and critical thinkers? How fitting is the postcolonial lens for viewing the post-apartheid relationship between professor Lurie and Melanie Isaacs? How does the postcolonial framework explain Lurie losing his job, or Melanie's behavior and racial ambiguity, or the academic committee deciding his case? What more about rape does the text ask when it introduces Lucy's being lesbian, the attackers' race and attitude, her pregnancy, and Lurie's experience of this as a father after his own disgrace?
Week 11
  • *Mark Haddon, The Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (2013)
  • *James Campbell, “How to Start a Story,” The Book of Hopes (2020)
Niramit: The ever-changing meanings of both literature and life are intertwined, accelerated by technologies of the present age. There are infinite ways to define Britishness, Thainess, or anything-ness.

Week 13
Raiwin: I want people to experience something new, something that will blow their mind or maybe, in this case, creeps them out.

Week 13
  • *Mark Haddon, The Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (2013)
Chollada: The goal is to let the students see recurring social issues through the fiction, so that they are more aware and thoughtful towards the complicated situations.
Puckpan: I like your heading "Student Engagement." It's a clear but broad category that can encompass both the the overall course/lesson spirit and policy and the specific pedagogy of lesson planning ex. activities, discussion questions and style, and even assessment methods. Engagement is also such a friendly and active term.

A couple of other comments:
  • Materials access: It's nice of you to provide hard copies of Haddon's novel for students at khun On's shop. Making provisions for new and used copies of The Incident of the Dog to be available at the Sala Prakiaw CU Bookstore would also be great under a different circumstance, but let's be really proactive with this project and design ways for students to access material remotely as well.
  • Discussion: While Asperger's syndrome (and autism) is an important topic to discuss in this novel, you are using it in British Fiction from the Twentieth Century to the Present class so in planning your week and two-day lessons, think about how the work fits into that trajectory. What does the novel show or do as an example of 2010s imaginative writing? What should students know or learn about contemporary British fiction, and how does their reading of Incident enable thinking and conversations about the range and variety of this output, and/or related changes and development, problems and implications of the text, readership, and industry?
Week 16
  • Frances Hardinge, Deeplight (2019)
Pichayapa: This course design takes us back to the paperback of the book with an old-school fantasy setting that was released in 2019, because I want to show that even with the new narrative being invented on another platform, the ‘old’ style still exists.

Weeks 16 and 17
  • *Alain de Botton, Essays in Love (2015)
Tanyamon: We will inspect on love in the twenty-first century British society presented through the mundane love story of the protagonist. Together with comparing it with our own perspective on the subject, we will be able to see how universal emotions and logic behind the concept of love is. 

Week 19
  • *Jenny Downham, Before I Die (2007)
  • *Now Is Good, directed by Ol Parker, BBC Films (2012)
  • *Virginia Woolf, "The Cinema" (1926)
  • *The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, directed by Robert Wiene (1920)
  • *Thomas De Quincey, "The Palimsest of the Human Brain" (1845)
Pasit: This additional week will cover the focus on the perception of modern British literature and its adaptation in different media.



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Last updated May 17, 2020