Race, Gender, and Literature

This course will seek to explore the ways in which literature addresses the issues of Race and Gender in the postmodern/postcolonial context. Breaking free from the traditional understanding of literature as an imaginative work of art, the selected readings will showcase the nexus between the literary and the political. The course will deal with the categories of ‘race’ and ‘gender’ as sociological constructs propagated within the political framework of ‘othering’. The lectures and readings will examine the varied representations and negations of the general understanding of these concepts, and how literary writers articulate their specific concerns to challenge the ideological tropes of our mainstream society. To explore the issues of race and gender, students will be introduced to works by the twentieth century African, Caribbean, African American writers, Black feminists, Queer theory, and Gay and Lesbian writing.