British University Dropping Study of Chaucer as it ‘Decolonises’ Curriculum
“would end all teaching on texts central to the development of the English language, including the Dark Age epic poem Beowulf, as well as Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”
The progressive ‘woke’ agenda is supplanting the pursuit of scholarship. Chaucer is being dropped in favor of race and sexuality.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports:
Chaucer to be scrapped as British university ‘decolonises’ curriculum
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 asThe 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.
Academics now facing redundancy were told via email: “The aim of our proposals [is] to offer a suite of undergraduate degrees that provide modules which students expect of an English degree.”
New modules described as “excitingly innovative” would cover: “A chronological literary history, a selection of modules on race, ethnicity, sexuality and diversity, a decolonised curriculum, and new employability modules.”
Professors were told that, to facilitate change, management planned to stop all English language courses, cease medieval literature, and reduce early modern literature offerings.
Despite Chaucer’s position as “the father of English literature”, he will no longer be taught if plans currently under consultation go ahead.
They would end all teaching on texts central to the development of the English language, including the Dark Age epic poem Beowulf, as well as Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.
Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur, the Viking sagas, and all works written earlier than 1500 would also be removed from the syllabus.
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England is done.
A sad, pathetic, gelded nation. I’m sorry to say, we appear to be headed in the same direction.
I can see a “decolonisation” program dropping Beowulf as the work of Scandinavian colonists, but Chaucer?!
Beowulf is the earliest piece of vernacular English literature. It is also the oldest surviving epic poem. Epic poetry is not ‘colonist literature’. Every nation used the form, we simply do not have complete poems from most nations. Studying the form, via that piece of literature, is important in understanding poetic development through the ages.
But it’s not English literature. It’s Geatish literature that was brought to England by Scandinavian colonists. That it only survives in an Old English translation shouldn’t be relevant to a devoted “decolonizer”. Chaucer, on the other hand, is pure English.
Sorry, “decoloniser”, since we’re talking about English English.
Poetic development is studied as a ‘part’ of English literature. I also studied Haiku, in an advanced class mind you, in English Literature and it is a purely Japenese form of poetic development, albiet one with an influence on Chinese poetry.
Then, let’s go all-in. “It’s crackers to slip a rozzer the dropsie in snide!”
Indeed it is.
“It’s wack to grease the fuzz with fugazi”.
What the heck are new employability modules?
Something dreamed up by someone prone to grandiose expostulations of thought, not recognizing the concept of making succinct and concise verbiage suffice.
Chaucer – one of the most humane, tolerant, broad-minded poets in the world, let alone England. They have no idea what they are doing.
Maybe they knew exactly what they were doing.
By placing a Chaucer or a Shakespeare in the canon, you admit that they knew things you don’t. By writing and rewriting the canon you become your own little god of the curriculum.
New modules described as “excitingly innovative” would cover: “A chronological literary history, a selection of modules on race, ethnicity, sexuality and diversity, a decolonised curriculum, and new employability modules.
Sorry, but these sound deathly boring.
Removing English writers from the history of English literature in England is “Orwellian” not “decolonization.” But, no doubt they’ll decolonize Orwell also.
A people with no history are a people that don’t exist, to be molded as you like. Islam used this to great effect during its conquests. All books and artifacts from before the conquest are destroyed, as they are jahiliyyah (“the period of pre-Islamic ignorance”). The pressure of dhimmitude and destruction of heritage made the forcible (in effect) conversion of the populace to Islam inevitable.
For a modern example, this principle led to the destruction of the Bamiyan buddhas.
Why exactly does the University of Leicester exist? Obviously, they cannot afford their English Department, so are trying to turn it ino a woke department with all new staff. Starting at the bottom of the salary structure, I’m sure. Sounds as if the university is in financial trouble … and floundering. The cold attitude towatrds their present teaching staff could explain a lot about this sorry university. The administration is incompetent. Good luck with the influx of students looking for a woke degree!
Checked out Wijipedia about this university. Here is a direct quote from the entry:
“The university was named University of the Year of 2008 by the Times Higher Education. It is also the only university ever to have won a Times Higher Education award in seven consecutive years. The university was previously consistently ranked among the top 20 universities in the United Kingdom by the Times Good University Guide and The Guardian. However, since 2014 the university has continued to fall below that level across all rankings, which it has defined as ‘disappointing’.
In 2017, the university ranked 25th in The Sunday Times Good University Guide, 32nd in The Complete University Guide and 47th in The Guardian.”