Black Women's Writing
Time: 18:00 - 19:30
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: HLT211
Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)
What is the course about?
This online literature course is an in-depth look at the work of Black women writers. We will consider their prose, poetry, essays and drama, with a focus on texts from the mid twentieth century to today. The aim is to engage in analysis and discussion about the work and the themes it explores. We will explore how each writer engages with each theme through the work. We will also discuss the connections that can be made to the wider socio-political context in which these women wrote. Finally, we will consider the writing, investigating the literary style of the texts through close reading and discussion, asking what effects are being achieved by the writing and how. This course allows readers to deepen their knowledge and appreciation for the work of Black women writers who have contributed some of the most ground-breaking, original and canonical work of our time.
Nina Reece is a teacher, writer, advocate and activist. She has seven years teaching experience, specialising English Literature, creative writing and academic skills. She is a Research Associate at the Centre for Caribbean and Diaspora Studies and in 2019, she founded the Black Writer's Book Club, a community reading group centring the creativity and scholarship of black authors. Her favourite genre is contemporary literary fiction.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
Each week there is a theme and a key literary text that engages with that theme. There is also an additional optional secondary text that provides context or background to the debates explored by the key text. Finally, there is also an additional audio or visual clip that course participants may wish to view to deepen their understanding. Only the key text is essential for reading and discussion. Beyond that, course participants are welcome to engage with as much or as little as they would like. Themes include Herstory, Family and Love. This course is interdisciplinary and spans different genres and moments in time. We will explore the work of Lorraine Hansbury, Natasha Gordon, Bernardine Evaristo, Tayari Jones, Warsan Shire, Audre Lorde, bell hooks and OWAAD, (The Organisation of Women of Asian and African Descent).
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
Demonstrate a knowledge of some key texts by Black women writers
Think about texts thematically and critically
Share your own analysis of seminal literary texts.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
Black Women’s Writing is for anyone who enjoys reading and discussing literature and is interested in sharing ideas, listening and welcomes the views of others. Some prior experience of analysing literary texts would be beneficial, but is not essential to enjoy this course.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Each week this course will entail doing preparatory reading at home and making notes to feed into discussions in class. In class, there may be a short lecture, and a mix pair work, small group work and whole class discussion. Visual and audio clips may also be made available on Google Classroom.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
All links and readings will be provided, however, if possible it is suggested that learners purchase and read the novels: An American Marriage by Tayari Jones (Oneworld, 2018), and The Emperor’s Babe by Bernardine Evaristo (Penguin, 2001). Excerpts of these texts will be provided one week before the course, but learners will undoubtedly have a richer experience if these novels have been read in their entirety.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Look for other literature courses at www.citylit.ac.uk/history, culture & writing/literature.