ENG4365 – The Short Story in English

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The course examines main points of development in the Anglo-American short story tradition in the nineteenth and twentieth century, drawing on central concepts from short fiction theory from Edgar Allan Poe to the present day. Beyond the much debated question of generic definition, the course will take a variety of approaches to the short story, including:

  • considering the short story in literary history
  • the impact of modernism and impressionism
  • the postcolonial short story
  • varieties of style and narrative technique
  • the representation of class, race, ethnicity, and gender in the short story

Learning outcome

After completing the course, you:

  • have an understanding of some fundamental features of the development of the Anglo-American short story.
  • can identify and discuss central aspects of short fiction theory.
  • have excellent skills in analyzing texts, structures and narrative techniques.
  • can engage critically with literary critics and theorists in your written work.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

Students enrolled in other Master's Degree Programmes can, on application, be admitted to the course if this is cleared by their own study programme.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

Overlapping courses

10 credits overlap with ENG2325 – The Short Story in English


Seminars, 2 hours per week for 14 weeks. 28 hours in all.

Obligatory activities:

  • Attendance at least 11 out of 14 seminars. Additional absences must be justified by documentation. Read more about rules concerning valid excuses and how to apply for approved absences or postponements here. Please note that absence exceeding 50 % of all seminars may not be approved, regardless of any excuses.
  • An essay of 5 standard pages (a standard page consists of 2,300 characters) turned in by a stated deadline.

Both the obligatory activities must be approved in the same semester for you to sit the exam. Once the course requirements are fulfilled, they remain valid for the current and the next two semesters that the course is taught.


The form of assessment is a 3-day home examination.

Previously given exam assignments and assessment guidelines

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read about how to submit assignments in Inspera.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Spring 2021

This course is taught irregularly


Spring 2021

This course is taught irregularly

Teaching language