Less Marlowe, more modules

The English department will stop teaching English literature.

The University of Leicester will stop teaching the great English medieval poet and author Geoffrey Chaucer in favour of modules on race and sexuality, according to new proposals.

Management told the English department that courses on canonical works would be dropped in favour of modules that “students expect” as part of plans now under consultation.

Foundational texts such as The Canterbury Tales and the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf would no longer be taught, under proposals to scrap medieval literature. Instead, the English faculty will be refocused to drop centuries of the literary canon and deliver a “decolonised” curriculum devoted to diversity.

Why not do both? Why not have English literature with Chaucer for those who want it, and with “modules on race and sexuality” for those who want that? It seems drastic to chop a large segment of English literature out of teaching English literature.

Professors were told that, to facilitate change, management planned to stop all English language courses, cease medieval literature, and reduce early modern literature offerings.

Cuts to early modern English modules could see texts such as John Milton’s Paradise Lost omitted, according to concerned academics, with teaching on Christopher Marlowe and John Donne potentially reduced.

Yeah don’t do that. No English literature student should be shortchanged on Marlowe and Donne.

The University of Leicester has said it would continue teaching William Shakespeare’s work.

Oh gee what a generous concession.

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