• Influence and forms of rewriting
  • Tradition and innovation
  • Genre and text
  • Intertextuality
  • Textuality and action
  • Authorship, ownership and community




This course aims to expose and explore reading and writing as historical activities and the role of their interplay in the shaping of traditions. It will provide students with a critical vocabulary for the analysis and discussion of different forms of rewriting and offer them opportunities to understand the rewriting process as a reflection of various key literary movements and periods.




There will be two contact hours per week on Thursdays from 10.30-12.30pm. Formal lectures in the first hour will be supplemented by smaller group discussions and presentations in the second. The first class will be held on Thursday, 7 September in Room CPD-3.01




Assessment for the course is 100% coursework. This is made up of one in-class writing exam (20%), two short assignments (20%), a final essay (40%), and class participation, participation and presentation (20%)




Primary Texts: Most of the excerpts and short stories will be available on Moodle, but please purchase the following texts from the HKU Bookstore: Jean Rhys, Wide Sargasso Sea, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Notes from the Underground, Albert Camus The Outsider and Kamel Daoud, The Meursault Investigation.

I highly encourage you to purchase these copies EARLY, as they tend to run out, and you may have to order the texts online.

Sonnets from William Shakespeare, William Wordsworth and Edna St Vincent Millay
Excerpts from Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre (1847)
Jean Rhys, Wide Sargasso Sea (1966)
Nikolai Gogol, ‘Memoirs of a Madman’ (1835)
Lu Xun, 'Diary of a Madman’ (1918)
Fyodor Dostoevsky, Notes from the Underground (1864)
Richard Wright, ‘The Man who Lived Underground (1961)
Albert Camus, The Outsider (1942)
Kamel Daoud, The Meursault Investigation (2013)

Secondary Texts/Additional Reading:

Ashcroft, Bill, Gareth Griffiths, Helen Tiffin. The Empire Writes Back: Theory and Practice in Post-colonial Literatures. 2nd ed. London: Routledge, 2002.
Bloom, Harold. The Anxiety of Influence: A Theory of Poetry. New York: Oxford UP, 1973
-----. A Map of Misreading. New York: Oxford UP, 1975.
Ricks, Christopher B. Allusion to the Poets. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2002.
Graham, Allen. Intertextuality. London: Routledge, 2000.
Orr, Mary. Intertextuality: Debates and Contexts. Cambridge: Polity, 2003.
Madsen, Deborah. Rereading Allegory: A Narrative Approach to Genre. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1994.
Johns-Putra, Adeline. The History of the Epic. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006.
Knox, Bernard. Backing into the Future: The Classical Tradition and Its Renewal. New York: W.W. Norton, 1994.
Cousins, A.D., and Peter Howarth, eds. The Cambridge Companion to the Sonnet. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2011.
Burke, Sean, ed. Authorship: From Plato to the Postmodern: A Reader. Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 1995.
Eisner, Caroline, and Martha Vicinus, eds. Originality, Imitation, and Plagiarism. Ann Arbor: U of Michigan P, 2008.
Posner, Richard A. The Little Book on Plagiarism. New York: Pantheon Books, 2007.



Last updated: 19 July 2017