ENGLISH 1TCV: TEXT, CRITICISM AND THE VISUAL
Information for Students - 2006
The Scope and Aims of the Subject
In TCV we study a range of literary texts and films based on the literary texts. The literary texts
include popular and ‘classic’ works, and a play by Shakespeare. The films are all recent. Our aim is to
treat the literary texts and the films as independent narratives, but also to use literary texts and films to
illuminate each other. We will discuss the differences and similarities in emphasis, meaning and effect;
we will consider details - selection, omission, addition, alteration - and general matters concerned with
the way these literary texts and these films tell their stories and make their meanings. Issues of gender
and genre, modernization and ‘authenticity’, will be discussed where the opportunity arises. We will
give some consideration to what might be meant by describing some of the texts and films as ‘popular’
and some as ‘classic’.
You should read all the literary texts and view all the films. You will need to own copies of all the
literary texts; they are on sale in the Bookshop. Videos of the films will be available for viewing in the
libraries at Bundoora, Albury/Wodonga and Mildura and also in the English department at Bundoora
(see Marie Mackenzie, room 526). Most of the films are to be found in your local video store.
Texts in the order in which they are taught are as follows: Trainspotting (novel by Irvine Welsh, film
directed by Danny Boyle); Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (Philip K Dick) and Blade Runner
(Ridley Scott); Persuasion (novel by Jane Austen, film directed by Roger Michell); Washington Square
(novel by Henry James, film directed by Agnieska Holland); Romeo and Juliet (play by William
Shakespeare, films directed by Franco Zeffirelli and by Baz Luhrmann). Note that Do Androids is also
published as Blade Runner; either edition is fine, as long as it is by Philip K Dick (there’s a Blade
Runner novelization by K W Jeter which is not relevant to our purposes). (There’s also a short,
simplified edition of Do Androids published for ESL students. Avoid this edition.)
Lecture/Seminars and Tutorials
1TVC will be taught in a combination of a two-hour lecture/seminar, and a one- hour tutorial per week.
The lecture/seminar at Bundoora is on Tuesdays, 1-3 in the Agora Cinema. The tutorials will be
organized at the first lecture and will commence in the second week of semester. There will be a wide
choice of times for the tutorials.
Work in the subject is organized in two-week blocks (‘units’) in the following way. In the first week of
the unit, there will be a lecture on the literary text, followed by a half hour or so for questions and
discussion, or a screening of part of the relevant film. The tutorials in the first week will discuss the
literary text. (You need to read all of it before the lecture and tutorial.) In the second week, there will
be a discussion of the corresponding film. This will usually involve the screening and discussion of a
number of sequences. The tutorials in the second week will discuss the film, and make comparisons
between film and literary text. Romeo and Juliet will have three weeks (we’ll discuss the films by
Zeffirelli and Luhrmann).
Assessment is detailed below. Please note that although you will mainly be assessed on your written
assignments, attendance at lectures and tutorials is obligatory. Collective discussion is a central part
of university work. This is particularly so in this subject. Opportunities for discussion - collectively
working out ideas, responses and problems - are many in this subject. Tutorial groups will sometimes
be larger than is desirable; this circumstance is a result of the financial situation of universities.
Please turn off mobile phones in lectures and tutorials.
This facility will be explained in the first lecture. The subject website will give you access to basic
information (timetable, assignment topics), links to useful web sites, a chat room for vigorous and
wide-ranging (but not rude!) discussion and a facility for emailing the subject co-ordinator. There will
also be material on E reserve, accessed through the Library website.
General Information about School of English
For general information about School of English and all the School's procedures, you should obtain a
copy of the Essential Guide for Students in the School of English, available from outside the English
general office (Humanities 2, room 526).
You are required to submit two assignments each of 1,500 words, each worth 35% of your final mark.
You have to submit 5 class preparation exercises, one for each unit. The class preparation exercises are
worth 20% of your final mark. Contribution to class work is worth 10% of your final mark.
The first assignment will involve comparisons of parts/specific aspects of novels and films; there will
be a choice of questions on Trainspotting and Do Androids/Blade Runner. The second assignment will
involve more general essay type questions; there will be a choice of questions on all the literary texts
and films. Note that you may not write on the same text or film for both assignments. The class
preparation exercises will involve brief questions on the novel/film to be discussed in each tutorial.
They are designed to help you prepare for the tutorials. Provided that you’ve read the book/viewed the
film, you should be able to do each class preparation exercise in about half an hour. With each unit
(that is, pairing of literary text and film) you choose which preparation exercise you do. This means
you do a preparation exercise roughly once a fortnight.
Assignment Length Due Date Value
First 1500 words 1 September 35%
Second 1500 words 30 October 35%
Preparations x5 about half a page at tutorial 20%
Class contribution 10%
Late Penalties and Extensions
If you have difficulty in submitting an assignment by the due date you should notify your tutor well
before the submission date. At the tutor's discretion a penalty of two percentage points per working day
may be deducted from the mark you receive. Work that is more than ten days late without extension or
explanation will not be accepted if there are no grounds for special consideration.
Each class preparation exercise should be submitted to the tutor at the beginning of the class for which
it is a preparation. You have to do 5.
You are entitled to ask for an essay to be remarked if you are unhappy about the mark. In the first
instance you should consult your tutor about any such request. Please see Essential Guide for details
of procedures to be followed.
Assignments that have been awarded a fail or an A have always been double marked.
Written work: You cannot pass 1TVC unless you submit the two assignments.
Tutorials: Attendance at tutorials is obligatory. If you attend less than 50% of tutorials you will
forfeit all marks for class contribution and may also fail the subject on the grounds that you have not
met subject requirements.
Coverage of texts: You cannot write on the same work (literary text or film) in both assignments.
Provisional nature of marks: University regulations provide that all marks allotted for written work
submitted in a subject are provisional until confirmed by the Examiners Meeting at the end of the year.
All written work submitted may be recalled at the discretion of the Chairperson of the Department. It is
your responsibility to keep a photocopy of all the written work you submit until the end of the year.
Written Work: Use of Secondary Material
Assignments must show, by means of footnotes and a bibliography, all sources from which material has
been obtained. Quotations from critics must be acknowledged in footnotes. If a critic is being
paraphrased the source (including page number) must be given. You should work into your text a clear
indication of where paraphrased material begins and ends - a footnote at the end of a paragraph is
usually too vague as an indication of what is being acknowledged. The bibliography should include all
works consulted in the preparation of the piece - even if this is only the primary text under discussion.
Failure to follow these standard scholarly guidelines - which, in effect, means to plagiarise material -
will be regarded with the utmost seriousness. If you are in any doubt as to what might constitute
plagiarism, consult your tutor.
For further information about the preparation of written work you should consult the Essential Guide
If you experience any problems you should take them up in the first instance with your tutor or the
subject coordinator. It is a good idea to bring any problem to the attention of someone in the School as
soon as possible.
If you have any queries about any aspect of the subject, or need further information, please contact
Chris Palmer, the subject coordinator, in the Program in English, room 507, Humanities 2 building, or
via the subject web site.