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A Literary Surgery and Pedagogical Treatment to Literature in Language Teaching: Literature in English Language Teaching

A Literary Surgery and Pedagogical Treatment to Literature in Language Teaching: Literature in English Language Teaching



Literature in English Language Teaching

Course Title: Literature in English Language Teaching      Full Marks: 50

Course No. Eng. Ed. 522                                               Pass Marks: 20

Nature of the Course: Theory                                         Period per week: 3

Year: Second                                                    Time per period: 55 minutes

Level: M.Ed.                                                                 Total Periods: 75


  1. Course Description

This is a compulsory course which aims to expose the students to a wide verity of literary genres and thereby equip them with the skills of teaching and adapting them for English language development. The course consists of five units. Each unit offers a theoretical background to a particular genre and presents basic techniques of exploiting literary text for English language teaching. The first and second units introduce the students with the elements of teaching poetry and drama with varieties of sample texts followed by their corresponding teaching activities. Similarly, units three, four and five deal with the teaching of short stories, novels and essays respectively. The last unit presents some current trends of literary criticism.

  1. Course Objectives

The general objectives of the course are as follows:

  • To acquaint the students with different form of poetry and develop skills in them to teaching poems.
  • To introduce the students to various aspects of teaching drama.
  • To familiarize the students with the techniques of teaching short story.
  • To enable the students to teach novels in the classroom.
  • To expose the students with various techniques of teaching essays.
  • To familiarize the students with different theories of contemporary literary criticism.
  1. Specific Objectives and Contents
Specific ObjectivesContents
·         Discuss different forms of poetry.

·         Explain the role of poetry in the language classroom.

·         Plan lessons, design materials and activities for teaching poetry.

·         Use different poems for the teaching of the English language

Unit I: Teaching Poetry (15)

1.1 Different forms of poetry

1.1.1 Sonnet

1.1.2 Elegy

1.1.3 Ode

1.1.4 Ballad

1.1.5 Epic

1.1.6 Lyric

1.1.7 Pastoral

1.1.8 Narrative

1.1.9 Romance

1.1.10 Close form versus open form

1.1.11 Words order in a fixed/open poem

1.2 Poetry in a language classroom

1.2.1 Poetry with the language learners

1.2.2 Teaching unusual language features

1.2.3 Poetry in the lower level

1.2.4 Poetry in the higher level

1.3 Planning lesson and designing materials for teaching poetry

1.4 Activities for teaching poetry

1.4.1 Pre-reading activities

1.4.2 While-reading activities

1.4.3 Post-reading activities

1.5 Sample poems

·   I am becoming my mother by Loma Goodison

·   Mek Four by John Agard

·   An introduction by Kamala Das

·   Letter from Mama Dot by Fred D’aguiar

·   The Fisherman Mourned by His Wife by Patrick Fernando

·   Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou

·   Atman by Robert Goslin

·   Children by Kahlil Gibran

·   To Autumn by John Keats

·   Certainty by Octavio Paz

·   The Second Coming by W.B. Yeats

·   Meditation by Teilhard De Chardin

·   Sonnet No. 5 by Laxami Prasad Devkota

·   Nursery Rhyme by  Gunter Grass

·   The Road not Taken by Robert Frost

·   The Watcher by James Stephens

·   Memory by Siegfried Sasoon

·   The Wind of Chaitra by Krishna Bhushan Bal

·   The Kerosene Stove by Homraj Acharya

·   Visiting a Country Churchyard by Gopi Sapkota

·   At the Temple by Prakash Subedi.

·         discuss different elements. and types of drama

·         Explain the dramatic conventions and their units

·         Analyse the structure and forms of drama.

·         Explain the role of drama in the language classroom

·         Plan lessons and activities for teaching drama.

·         Use different dramas for the teaching of the English language.

Unit II: Teaching Drama (15)

2.1 Elements of Drama

2.1.1 Plot

2.1.2 Character

2.1.3 Dialogue

2.1.4 Setting

2.1.5 Conflict

2.1.6 Theme

2.2 Types of Drama

2.2.1 Tragedy

2.2.2 Comedy

2.2.3 Tragi-Comedy

2.2.4 Farce

2.3 Dramatic Conventions

2.3.1 Dialogue

2.3.2 Monologue

2.3.3 Soliloquy

2.3.4 Asides

2.4 Unities of Drama

2.4.1 Unity of time

2.4.2 Unity of place

2.4.3 Unity of action

2.5 Five-fold structure of drama

2.5.1 Initial incidence

2.5.2 Rising action

2.5.3 Climax

2.5.4 Falling action

2.5.5 Catastrophe/resolution

2.6 Popular forms of drama

2.6.1 One-act plays

2.6.2 Three-act plays

2.6.3 Five-act plays

2.6.4 Other forms

2.7 Drama in the language classroom

2.7.1 Drama as language of conversation

2.7.2 Use of extract for oral performacne

2.7.3 Role playing

2.7.4 Dialects and idiolects

2.8 Planning lessons and designing materials for teaching drama

2.9 Sample dramas

·         Mother figure by Alan Ayckbourn

·         The dumb Waiter by Harold Pinter

·         A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

·         Discuss different elements of short stories

·         Explain the importance of short stories in the language classroom.

·         Plan lessons and activities for teaching short stories

·         Use different short stories for teaching English.

Unit III: Teaching Short Story (15)

3.1 Elements of short story

3.1.1 Plot

3.1.2 Character

3.1.3 Setting

3.1.4 Style

3.1.5 Theme

3.2 Short story in the language classroom

3.2.1 Planning lessons and designing materials for teaching short story

3.2.2 Activities for teaching short story

·         Pre-reading activities

·         While-reading activities

3.2.3 Sample short stories

·         Lamb to the slaughter by Roald Dahl

·         Home landing by Margaret Atwood

·         The Little Mermaid by Hans Christen Anderson

·         A Fruitful sunday by Agatha Christie

·         Tuesday Siesta by Gabrief Garcia Marquz

·         The Lottery in Babylon by Jorge Luis Borges

·         Martha by Kahlil Gibran

·         The Lady in the looking glass by Virginiya Wolf

·         Enemy by V.S. Naipal

·         Vanka by Anton Chakhov

·         The Garden Party by Katherine Mansfield

·         The Whale by Witi Lhimaera

·         Five Fingers by Lee Kok Liang

·         Myself in India by Ruth Prawer ray bradbury

·         There will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury

·         Hem Subba at Pann by Dhruba Chandra Gautam (Tran. Manjushree Thapa)

·         The little Islands of Happiness by Vishun S. Rai.

·         Discuss different elements of novels.

·         Explain the importance of novels in the language classroom.

·         Plan lessons and activities for teaching novels.

·         Use different novels.

·         Use different novels for teaching English.

Unit IV: Teaching Novel (15)

4.1 Elements of Novel

4.1.1 Plot

4.1.2 Character

4.1.3 Setting

4.1.4 Style

4.1.5 Theme

4.2 Novel in the language classroom

4.2.1 Briefing the story

4.2.2 Pointing at the cultural gaps

4.2.3 Retelling the narrative from different angles

4.2.4 Planning lesson and designing for teaching novel

4.3 Activities for teaching novel

4.3.1 Pre-reading activities

4.3.2 While-reading activities

4.3.3 Post-reading activities

4.4 Sample text for novel

4.4.1 Novel extracts

·         Extract 1. The catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger

·         Extract 2. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

4.4.2 Novels

·         What Katy did by Susan Coolidge

·         To Kill a Mockingbird by Nelle Harper Lee

·         Discuss different elements of  essays.Unit V: Teaching Essay (7)

5.1 Elements of essay

5.2 Essay in the language classroom

5.3 Planning lesson and designing materials for teaching essay

5.4 Activities for teaching essay

5.4.1 Pre-reading activities

5.4.2 While-reading activities

5.4.3 Post-reading activities

5.5 Sample Essays

·         The Centre of Nowhere by Barbara Ras

·         On Italian Time by Mary Morris

·         Ulysses by James Joyee

·         Origin of Species by Charles Darwin

·         On writing by Sangeet Sharma.

·         Postmodernism and the Art of Identity by Christopher Read

·         Introduction to Siddhartha by Ralph Freedman.

·         Autobiographical notes by James Baldwin

·         A Day in Samoa by Margaret Mead

·         Niagara Falls by Rupert Brooke

·         A Word for Autumn by A.A. Milne

·         City of the Dead: A City of the Living by Nadine Gordimer

·         In the night by Jamaica Kincaid

·         The Seventh and Other days by Epeli Hau ‘Ofa’

·         Marigolds by Subramani

·         Left for Dead by Cathy Free

·         The Remains of the Feast by Githa Hariharan

·         A Journey to the Aesthetic Shrine by GR Bhattarai

·         In Praise of the Himalaya by Bharat Prasad Dhital

·         Review critically the major contemporary literary criticism theories given in the course.Unit VI: Contemporary Literary Criticisms (8)

6.1 Psychoanalytic criticism

6.2 Marxists Criticism

6.3 Feminist Criticism

6.4 Reader-response criticism

6.5 Structuralist criticism

6.6 Deconstructive criticism

6.7 Cultural criticism

6.8 Post-colonial criticism

6.9 Postmodern criticism

Note: The figures in the parentheses indicate the approximate period for the respective units.

  1. Instructional Techniques

The instructional techniques for this course are divided into two groups. First group consists of general instructional techniques applicable to most of the units. The second group consists of specific instructional techniques applicable to specific units.

4.1 General Instructional Techniques

  • Lecture and discussion
  • Demonstration
  • Explanation and Illustration
  • Self-study

4.2 Specific Instructional Techniques

Units, I, II, III & VI: Presentation

Units IV & V: Group and individual work

Units II &III: Project work

  1. Evaluation

The course is for one academic year and it carried 50 marks. The distribution marks for each units is as follows:

i.              Teaching poetry18
ii.             Teaching Drama
iii.            Teaching Short Story20
iv.            Teaching  Novel
v.             Teaching Essay12
vi.            Modern Trends in Criticism


This is a theory course. Hence, the learning of the students will be assessed through annual examination held by the office of controller of examinations. The types and number of questions in the annual examination are given in the following table:

Types of QuestionsTotal questions to be askedNumber of questions to be answered and marks allocatedTotal marks
Group A: Multiple Choice Items8 questions8×1 mark8
Group B: Short Answer questions5 with  2 ‘or’ questions5×6 marks30
Group C: Long Answer questions1 questions1×12  marks12
  1. Recommended Books and References

Recommended Books

Abrams, M.H. & Harpham, G.G. (2001). A glossary of literary terms. New York: Wordsworth Publishing Company. (For Unit I)

Awasthi, J.R., Bhattarai, G.R. and Khaniya; T.R. (2010) (Eds.). New Paradigm. Kathmandu: Editors. (for all units)

Collie, J. and Slater, S. (2010). Literature in the Classroom. Cambridge: CUP, (for Units I, II, III, IV & V)

Lazar, G. (2010): Literature for language teaching: Cambridge : CUP. (For units, I, II, III &V)

Selden, R. (1989). A reader’s guide to contemporary literary theory. London: OUP (For unit VI)

Tyson, L. (2008). Critical Theory Today. New York: Routledge. (For unit VI)


Eagleton, T. (2008). Literary Theory: An introduction. UK: Balckwell Publishing.

Maley, A., Mukunda, J & Rai, V.S. (2009). Life in words and words in life. Poems and stories for Asian Students. Kathmandu : Bhudipuran Prakashan.

Sanders, A. (2002). The short Oxford History of English literature. New York: OUP.

Scholes, R. (2004). Elements of literature. Oxford: OUP.

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