Literature, Politics and Culture in Postwar Britain (Q3307)

30 credits, Level 5

Spring teaching

This module will examine how literature and other cultural products (the visual arts, film, and architecture, for instance) responded to the immense transformations of the post-war period. Indicative topics include: how writers and artists reflected on the violence of the Second World War and the ongoing threat of nuclear war and totalitarian domination; the establishment of the welfare state (including the postwar university); responses to decolonization and immigration; ideas about motherhood and masculinity, class and Communism, youth subcultures and the influence of America.

The module will examine literature’s engagement with politics, philosophy, psychoanalysis and popular culture, and will also explore the complex legacies of modernism. While this is a historical module, students will be encouraged to reflect on how the debates of the post-war period bear upon contemporary political and cultural discussions.


50%: Lecture
50%: Seminar


100%: Coursework (Portfolio)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 300 hours of work. This breaks down into about 40 hours of contact time and about 260 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

This module is running in the academic year 2021/22. We also plan to offer it in future academic years. However, we are constantly looking to improve and enhance our courses. There may be changes to modules in response to student demand or feedback, changes to staff expertise or updates to our curriculum. We may also need to make changes in response to COVID-19. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: