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Arkistoitu opetusohjelma 2017–2018
Selaat vanhentunutta opetusohjelmaa. Voimassa olevan opetusohjelman löydät täältä.
ENGS42-43 Writing and Filming the Arctic 5 ECTS
Period I Period II Period III Period IV
Language of instruction
Type or level of studies
Advanced studies
Course unit descriptions in the curriculum
Englannin kielen, kirjallisuuden ja kääntämisen tutkinto-ohjelma
Faculty of Communication Sciences

General description

In recent debates about the global ecosystem, the Arctic has taken centre stage as a region where climate change can be both observed and studied, and where pressing geopolitical and environmental questions are negotiated; the planting of a Russian flag under the Arctic ice in 2007 and Donald Trump’s recent plans to push for oil drilling off the Alaskan coast are cases in point. Along with scientists and politicians, writers and filmmakers have turned to the Arctic, and fashioned it as a testing ground for various global fantasies and anxieties. In our course, we will critically examine this recent interest in the high North by reading it through the prism of a long-standing imaginative investment in the Arctic in British and North American culture. We will explore the ways in which the Arctic has functioned as a space for the projection of cultural fantasies since the voyages of Martin Frobisher in the late sixteenth century; as the search for the Northwest Passage and the North Pole was relaunched in the nineteenth century, Romantic and Victorian authors and visual artists figured the Arctic as a sublime and spectacular wasteland hostile to human inhabitation. Politically, the Arctic was turned into a seemingly “pure” space where heroic male explorers could demonstrate the supremacy of nation and empire; in the twentieth century, the Arctic played an important imaginative role as a space connecting the superpowers during the Cold War. As we will see, this legacy continues to haunt contemporary representations of the Arctic; at the same time, Inuit authors and filmmakers have started to challenge Western (or rather Southern) views of the high North, and offer powerful visions of the Arctic as a transnational homeland.

Students are expected to buy their own copies of the following books: Mary Shelley, Frankenstein; Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita; Sarah Moss, Cold Earth; and Mini Aodla Freeman, Life Among the Qallunaat. All other texts will be made available on Moodle. Screenings will be organized for the films on the syllabus (nonetheless, it is recommended that students acquire their own copies of the films as well). A detailed syllabus will be made circulated at the beginning of term. Students will be evaluated on the basis of a longer essay and several smaller assignments.

Enrolment for University Studies

Enrolment time has expired


Johannes Riquet, Teacher responsible


6-Sep-2017 – 13-Dec-2017
Wed 6-Sep-2017 - 11-Oct-2017 weekly at 12-14, Päätalo A35
Wed 25-Oct-2017 - 13-Dec-2017 weekly at 12-14, Päätalo A35