This course is discontinued

NORAM4305 – Literature and Society in the United States and Canada

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

This course tries to show how a selection of American and Canadian novels can be studied as a means to gain insight into a number of important aspects of contemporary American and Canadian society. The primary focus will be on the ways in which these texts both reflect and produce discourses related to race, class, gender, sexuality, and species at the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st century.

Learning outcome

After completing this course you will have:

  • learned how it is possible to use literary texts and their special artistic strategies to acquire important insights into central aspects of the culture and society of contemporary North America.
  • developed your skills in literary and cultural analysis, with close engagement with key texts, while connecting those texts to theoretical debates related to race, class, gender, sexuality, and species;
  • developed your skills analyzing literary texts in relation to dominant discourses and historical and cultural contexts;
  • improved your ability to handle written and spoken (American) English.


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.

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

Admission to the European and American Literature Studies program, LeP or the European and American Area studies program.


Recommended previous knowledge

The course assumes a good proficiency in written and oral English


The course is taught throughout the semester with 2 hours per week for 10 weeks.

Attendance is obligatory at least 8 out of 10 seminars. Additional absences must be justified by documentation given to the exam administrator.


The assessment of the course is based on a term paper of approximately ten pages (4000 words). The topic for the term paper will be decided by the teacher and student together.

Students are required to submit the term paper at an appointed time. Beforehand, students will be given an opportunity to submit a draft of the term paper and receive individual feedback on both the form and content of the draft.

You submit your paper in Fronter in the course's "fellesrom". Read more about submission procedures

The term paper is the basis for the grade in this course.

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.

The results will be published on the StudentWeb within three weeks after the exam is completed.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

In case of illness, you may apply for a postponed submission date. Please contact the exam administrator.

Withdrawal from an examination

A term paper or equivalent that is passed may not be resubmitted in revised form.

If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline, 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.

Reports from periodic evaluations (in Norwegian)

Facts about this course






Spring 2017


Spring 2017

Teaching language