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Literature 5C: Introduction to British Popular Culture


Admission requirements

Literature 1A and/or Literature 2, 3 or equivalent.


We will explore British popular culture from 1940 to the present day. We will examine film, television, pop music and youth subcultures. We shall investigate how these popular cultural forms reflect social and political changes in Britain. This means that students will be introduced to the basic ideas and history of ‘cultural studies’.

Course objectives

  • This course will extend and deepen students’ critical analysis through in-depth consideration of texts. Students will explore critical debates concerning British culture.

  • The course will aim to provide for literature students the critical skills necessary for the analysis of popular cultural texts.

  • Students will share analytical and critical views on the texts ascribed in class discussion, including short presentations, and will focus research skills in the writing of a final research paper and an exam. Their paper will be on a relevant subject of their own choice within the parameters of the course.


The timetable will be available by June 1st on the website

Mode of instruction

  • Lecture

  • Seminar

  • Research

Course Load

The course load of this course is 280 hours.

  • 24 hours spent on attending lectures and seminars: 24

  • time for studying the literature and films: 60

  • time to prepare for the exam and write the papers (including reading / research): 196

Assessment method

  • Essay(s) (50%):
    Two essays of 1200 words (25% each); or, one short essay of 1200 words and one presentation; or, one longer essay on a comparative subject (dealing with at least two texts featured on the syllabus) of 2500 words (50%).
    Both essays are due one week following the last class.

  • Final Exam (50%)

If the final grade is 5 or less students may only resit the insufficient course component(s).

Attendance is compulsory. Unauthorized absence will mean that you cannot take part in the relevant exam(s).


Blackboard will be used to provide students with an overview of current affairs, as well as specific information about (components of) the course.

This course is supported by blackboard.

Reading list

There is no set reading. However, one useful book that provides the major essays in the field of cultural studies and therefore may be of use to students is:

During, Simon, (ed.). (2007) The Cultural Studies Reader (Routledge).


Enrollement trough uSis is mandatory. If you have any questions, please contact the departmental office, tel. 071 5272144 or mail:

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte
Registration Contractonderwijs

Contact details

English Language and Culture student administration, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 102C. Tel. 071 5272144;
Coordinator of studies: Ms T.D. Obbens, MA, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 103C.


The text for week one is: Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943).