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Level X

History – The Novel as Social History: Comparing Cultures – Autumn Term


Unique course comprising literature, social and cultural history, book club -; and lively discussion! Within the pages of the novel we discover more than a story – enthralling ‘other’; information about people, relationships, class and place.

We study the social and cultural history of the novel by exploring background information we are absorbing unwittingly, and which is not the main theme, but which gives us an extensive and detailed knowledge of everyday life

Within each piece of fiction is a wealth of information on culture and social life which leads us into deeper understanding of a subject, time, place, period in history, genre, working conditions, habits, style or social trend that we might pursue further, deepen our knowledge and intensify our interest.

There are two books to read each fortnight over 10 weeks in a specific order and make notes. You then participate in lively group discussion in the relaxed and friendly atmosphere. This term’;s novels include: “The Vagabond“ by Colette “The Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck”, “The Mother” by Pearl S Buck “A Town Like Alice” by Nevil Shute”, “The Ballad of Peckham Rye” by Muriel Spark -; 5 more: REQUEST FULL READING LIST WELL IN ADVANCE OF THE COURSE FROM TUTOR:

This course will run on a Saturdays 1100-1300 – 05/10/24, 19/10/24, 09/11/24, 23/11/24 & 07/12/24

N.B. Some novels contain outdated language, attitudes and cultural depictions which cause offence today. They have to be read and viewed from an historic perspective. When discussing the content these views are not those of the tutor.


Suitable for all abilities


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