British Cultural Identities - 2nd semester


a) To become more learned in neo-Victorianism, revivals and new utopias in the 20th-21st centuries;
b) To rediscover Victorian Studies in the areas of society, politics, economics, aesthetics and the arts;
c) To discuss identity (de)constructions of possession and appropriation of the past from a neo-Victorian perspective;
d) To use a various corpus of textual and visual records so as to make possible a metacultural problematization and to articulate Neo-Victorian Studies with Utopian Studies;
e) To do critical readings/reviews and relevant thematic and bibliographical research in the field of Cultural Studies, Neo-Victorian Studies and Utopian Studies;
f) To produce a research paper on one of the topics addressed in the course syllabus.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Iolanda de Freitas Ramos


Weekly - 3 letivas + 1 tutorial

Total - Available soon

Teaching language



Not applicable.


Arias, R. & Pulham P. (Eds.) (2010). Haunting and Spectrality in Neo-Victorian Fiction: Possessing the Past. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Boehm-Schnitker, N. & Gruss S. (Eds.) (2014). Neo-Victorian Literature and Culture: Immersions and Revisitations. London and New York: Routledge. 

Heilman, A. & Llewellyn, M. (2010). Neo-Victorianism: The Victorians in the Twenty-First Century, 1999-2009. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Kucich, J. & Sadoff, D. F. (Eds.) (2000). Victorian Afterlife: Postmodern Culture Rewrites the Nineteenth Century. Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press.

Sargent, L. T. (2010). Utopianism: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Vandermeer, J. (2011). The Steampunk Bible. New York: Abrams Image.

Teaching method

Presentation of the topics of the course syllabus by the lecturer; interactive methodology, based on audiovisual resources and support texts, and contributions by the students based on the reading of primary sources and contemporary analyses for oral presentation and/or group discussion; tutorial supervision of the critical readings/reviews and/or the thematic and bibliographical research tasks related to the final research paper on one of the topics addressed in the course syllabus.

Evaluation method

A regular attendance is mandatory for participation in the debates and short research tasks, plus oral presentation of the table of contents of the final paper (50%); production of a final research paper (50%).

Subject matter

Neo-Victorianism, Revivals and New Utopias (20th-21st centuries):
1. Cultural temporalities: concepts and methodologies.
2. Retrophilia and neo-Victorianism: intertextual practices and cultural appropriations of the past.
2.1. Identity (de)constructions and the paradigm of the British Empire.
2.2. Commodity culture and imperial iconography.
2.3. Spiritualism, the supernatural world, entertainment and the underworld.
3. Retrofuturism and utopianism: cultural practices and aesthetic representations.
3.1. The subversion of History: transtemporality, alternate history/stories and parallel worlds.
3.2. Steampunk, subcultures and countercultures.
3.3. Science, ecology and utopian thought.
4. Cultural heritage, postmodernity and globalization.