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Monday, February 01, 2010

MPhil - Research Methods in English Studies Course Plan

Course Introduction: This course will hone the reading writing and textual analytical skills of the participants. While the first module will be lecture oriented. Module two and three will take the workshop mode involving intensive reading and writing exercises. Module four will be in a seminar mode. Only a select essays will taken for the seminar.

Course Objectives

  • To introduce the participants to the various research methods in English Studies.
  • To equip students with the skill of textual analysis
  • To hone research writing skills
  • To expose students to the theories of reading authorship

Session 1 : Archival Methods (Anil)

Session 2 : Oral History as a Research Method (Varghese)

Session 3 : Visual Methodologies (Debasmita)

Session 4 : Discourse Analysis (Sumeela)

Session 5 : Ethnographic Methods (Varghese)

Session 6 : Quantitative methods for text studies (Shaheen)

Session 7 : Textual analysis as a research method (Meenaa)

Session 8 : Interviewing (Sumeela)

Session 9 : Elements of Literary Works; Understanding a Literary Text

Session 10 : Interpreting and Analyzing a Literary Text

Session 11 : Exposition

Session 12 : Compare and contrast

Session 13 : Cause and effect; argument

Session 14 : Barthes - Work to Text (Shahin)

Session 15 : Barthes: Death of the Author(Shahin)

Session 16 : Foucault - What Is an Author? (Debasmita)

Session 17 : White -The Historical Text as Literary Artefact (Varghese)

Session 18 : Jameson - Preface, and On Interpretation (Anil)

Session 19 : Jameson - Metacommentary (Meenaa)

Session 20 : Jameson - The Ideology of the Text (Sumeela)


  • Each session is of two hours duration.
  • Sessions 1 to 8. Will be seminar based. Research Methods for English Studies edited by Gabriele Griffin will be the textbook.
  • Sessions 9 to 13 will draw upon the work of MAR Habib in research writing. The sessions will follow workshop methodology
  • Sessions 14 to 20 will also be seminar based. The texts will be made available in the beginning of the course.

CIA I - Four short research papers of not less than 750 words each using exposition, compare and contrast, cause and effect, and argument as styles of writing. Date for submission: By 22 March 2010. Based on Sessions 1 to 13.

CIA II - Presentation and report based on sessions 1 to 8

CIA III – Presentation and report based on sessions 14 to 20

Note: The reports should summarise the presentation and discussion in respective seminars. The reports should strictly adhere to standard academic writing formats. The reports should reach me within a week from the date of presentation. I will respond to them within a week's time.


Griffin, Gabriele. ed. Research Methods for English Studies. Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 2005. Print.

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. 7th ed. New Delhi: East-West Press, 2009. Print, Web.

MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing. 3rd ed. New York: MLA, 2008. Print.

Somekh, Bridget and Cathy Lewin. eds. Research Methods in Social Sciences. New Delhi: Sage/Vistaar, 2005. Print.

The Chicago Manual of Style 15th ed. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2003. Print, Web.

The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. 5th ed. Washington: Amer. Psychological Assn. 2001. Print.

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