Studies in British Literature: Black and Asian British Literature - Writing Intensive

Black and Asian British Literature
Section 01
Karen Piper
Course Description

England today is a thriving and vibrant multicultural country, but it wasn't always that way. In this course, we will start with the watershed event in British immigration history: the arrival of the Empire Windrush ship in 1948, which brought thousands Afro-Caribbean immigrants to England to work after World War II. The early optimism of these immigrants was soon dashed as they encountered violence against minorities and racist housing laws. By 1958, race riots had erupted in Nottingham Hill in response to these problems. Though battles over the legacy and consequences of the British Empire continue today, Black and Asian British authors have exploded in popularity in recent years. The books that we will read include: Salman Rushdie’s Haroun and the Sea of Stories, Zadie Smith’s White Teeth, Kazuo Ishiguro’s A Pale View of the Hills, and Abdulrazak Gurnah's Gravel Heart, and Irenosan Okojie's Butterfly Fish. These authors take us, through their writing, to Nigeria, Japan, Tanzania, the Caribbean, and even Iran, while firmly grounding the reader in a rich British multicultural history.