How did we get from Pride and Prejudice to Fifty Shades of Grey?
While Jane Austen is one of the most canonical writers in the history of literature, contemporary romance is often seen as the unwanted guest in genre fiction, associated with mass production, overblown emotion, and poor-quality writing. But the truth is often far from the perception.
In America alone, nearly a quarter of all fiction published is categorised as romance and the industry is worth billions.
Defined by the Romance Writers of America as comprising ‘a central love story and an emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending’, the genre also encompasses many subgenres, ranging from the paranormal to the erotic.
On this module, you will examine a range of different types of romance and their contexts, while also exploring different styles and modes in supportive workshops.
Learning and teaching
The module will be delivered through ten 2-hour sessions, made up of workshops, class discussions, and small group work.
Topics may include:
- Defining Romance: Literary roots of the Romance genre
- Key Tropes in Romantic Fiction: from the female sphere to internalised dilemmas
- Transgressive subgenres: paranormal, erotic, queer, historical, romantic suspense, and YA romance
- Contemporary Romance Publishers: from Harlequin to Entangled
- Audiences and Publishers
- The Future of Romance
Coursework and assessment
To award credits we need to have evidence of the knowledge and skills you have gained or improved.
Some of this has to be in a form that can be shown to external examiners so that we can be absolutely sure that standards are met across all courses and subjects.
The most important element of assessment is that it should enhance your learning. Our methods are designed to increase your confidence and we try very hard to devise ways of assessing you that are enjoyable and suitable for adults with busy lives.
You will complete a creative writing portfolio and will write reflectively about your own process. The portfolio will be around 1500-2000 words in length.
You will be provided with comprehensive reading suggestions at the beginning of the course. No pre-reading is required.
Library and computing facilities
As a student on this course you are entitled to join and use the University’s library and computing facilities. Find out more about using these facilities.
Our aim is access for all. We aim to provide a confidential advice and support service for any student with a long term medical condition, disability or specific learning difficulty. We are able to offer one-to-one advice about disability, pre-enrolment visits, liaison with tutors and co-ordinating lecturers, material in alternative formats, arrangements for accessible courses, assessment arrangements, loan equipment and dyslexia screening.