Università degli Studi di Napoli "Parthenope"

Teaching schedule

Academic year: 
Belonging course: 
Course of Bachelor's Degree Programme on ECONOMICS AND BUSINESS
Disciplinary sector: 
Year of study: 
Second semester
Hours of front activity: 



Course description

The course aims to enhance students’ knowledge of the cultural, economic and socio-political context of the United Kingdom through the analysis of literary and non-literary texts which deal with the complex notion of national identity.
Besides conveying specific notions, the module is also designed to develop students’ interest in the study of distant cultures present in British multicultural society (especially east-Asian ones), together with the languages and mass media through which these cultural aspects are disseminated.


Knowledge and understanding:
Students are expected to demonstrate the knowledge of the main distinguishing features of contemporary British culture, with particolar reference to its multiethnic nature and hybrid identity, as well as the perception of how these aspects affect the artistic and literary production.

Applying knowledge and understanding:
Students are expected to be able to report on the distinguishing features of British culture and to interpret some literary texts also by identifying the connection between reality and fiction.

Making judgments:
Students are expected to demonstrate the ability to approach and judge a foreign culture with an open attitude, critical and deconstructive towards stereotypes and preconceptions.

Communication skills:
Students will demonstrate the ability to communicate in English in a clear and appropriate way.

Learning skills:
Students are expected to demonstrate a good capacity of learning independently as well as and of studying in depth and using appropriately the acquired cultural knowledge and communicative functions, also practicing with the supplementary materials uploaded on the e-learning platform.


In order to follow the lectures and study the course materials students are expected to have a good command of English (at least B2).


Module 1 - Civilization: the United Kingdom

Module 2 - Literature: Contemporary British Fiction

Teaching Methods

Besides the lectures and class activities, students can practice and consolidate their knowledge on the dedicated section on the Moodle e-learning platform (


Extracts from the following texts:

Module 1:

James O’Driscoll, Britain for Learners of English, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2009 (chapters 1, 4, 5, 16, 22).
Mike Storry, Peter Childs, British Cultural Identities, Fourth Edition, Routledge, 2013 (extracts)

Module 2:

Monica Ali, Brick Lane (any edition, first chapter and extracts)
Julian Barnes, England, England (any edition, first chapter and extracts)

Nick Bentley, Contemporary British Fiction, Edinburgh, Edinburgh University Press, 2008 (Introduction, excerpts of chapters 2 and 5);
Vera Nünning, “The Invention of Cultural Traditions: the Construction and Deconstruction of Englishness in Julian Barnes’s England, England”, Anglia 119, 2001, pp. 58-76 (pp. 5-28 of PDF)

NB. All materials can be downloaded on the dedicated section on the Moodle e-learning platform. You can find the module among the units of the degree course in Economics (“Economica e Commercio”) at

Additional materials for students attending the course will be provided in class.

Learning assessment

Oral examination in English, aimed to verify the level of acquisition and personal reinterpretation of the cultural and literary topics presented during the course.

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