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Situated Literatures II: James Joyce as a European Writer


Admission requirements

A relevant BA degree. If in doubt, please contact the tutor.


This course is an extension of the MA course “Situated Literatures” (5 EC), and intends to offer a detailed study and analytical reading of Ulysses by James Joyce (1882-1941), one of the most innovative and influential writers in English of the twentieth century. We will place his work in a historical, literary and theoretical context. Questions to be addressed among others will be: what are the major contributions of Joyce to the development of Modernism? How ‘European’ is Joyce? How much does Ulysses rely on Homer’s Odyssey?

Course objectives

Based on the assumption that participants have already acquired the basic skills for the analysis of literary texts, this course aims to extend these skills both in terms of textual analysis (close reading) and contextual approach (cultural-historical as well as theoretical). Students will be encouraged to share analytical and theoretical views on the texts ascribed in class discussion, and to focus research skills on a relevant subject of their own choice within the parameters of the course in the form of a final research paper.


The timetable will be available by July 1st on the website.

Mode of instruction

2-hour seminar per week.

Course Load

The course load is 140 hours: *14 hours of tutorial

  • 85 hours of reading primary and secondary material

  • 41 hours for research and writing of the research paper.
    The hours above are an approximate calculation only. Some students read fast and write slow and vice versa.

Assessment method

Evaluation of this course will be on the basis of participation in class discussion (20%) + a written paper of ca. 5,000 words (80%).


Blackboard will be used to provide students with additional information/reading material.

Reading list

  • James Joyce, Ulysses: Annotated Student’s Edition, with an introduction and notes by Declan Kiberd (Penguin)

  • Derek Attridge, ed., The Cambridge Companion to James Joyce (2nd edn)


Students should register through uSis. If you have any questions, please contact the departmental office, tel. 071 5272251 or mail.

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Study in Leiden website for information on how to apply.

Contact information

MA Literary Studies departmental office, Van Wijkplaats 3, room 002A. Tel. 071 527 2251 or mail.
Coordinator of Studies: Ms T.D. Obbens, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 103C.


It will be useful to have read or have basic knowledge of Joyce’s Dubliners and A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man before taking this class.