Literature Units 1 and 2


The course provides opportunities for reading deeply and critically. You will write detailed analytical and creative responses.

In Unit 1 you will examine the historical and cultural contexts of set texts. You will be looking at the assumptions, views and values, which both writer and reader bring to the texts. We will provide you with the skills to contemplate how you read, as well as what you read.

In Unit 2 you will explore the ways literary texts connect with each other and with the world. You will explore literary theory and compare texts, analysing the differences and similarities between them.

Who is it for?

This subject is for students who enjoy reading a wide range of literary forms and styles.
Students who study Literature usually enjoy exploring and examining complex characters and themes. Literature students can go on to a range of different areas of study, and may pursue a career as a writer of prose, film, games or other media.

What do you do?

Activities you will engage in include:

Unit 1.

  • exploring how language, structure and stylistic choices are used in different literary forms and text types through a comparison between Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novella, The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and the 2003 film version.
  • learning about conventions, techniques, language patterns, style and diction in relation to the study of World War 1 poets Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon, and David Malouf’s novel, Fly Away Peter.
  • studying how texts reflect or comment on the interests of individuals and particular groups of society via a comparison of Shakespeare’s comedy, The Taming of the Shrew and the film adaptation, 10 Things I Hate About You.

Unit 2.

  • exploring the themes, issues, ideas and concerns of the 1920s and how they are represented in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, The Great Gatsby.
  • learning about the dialogic nature of texts and how they influence each other, via a comparison of Euripides’ classic play, Medea and Faye Weldon’s, The Life and Loves of a She-Devil.

What skills do you need?

To undertake the study of Literature Units 1 and 2 you will need to be a highly independent and confident reader. You should be able to write at length and have the ability to reflect on your interpretations and those of others.

What skills do you develop?

You will develop the following skills:

  • an understanding of how both the author and reader influence the reading experience;
  • an understanding of social and cultural contexts that texts are created in
  • the ability to critically analyse key literary features of individual texts and to make relevant connections to them
  • an understanding of literary theory and
  • the ability to write analytical and creative responses to texts.




You must have access to the internet in order to access this course. All weekly work will be completed and submitted online.

Unit 1

Shakespeare. The Taming of the Shrew (Cambridge School Shakespeare) third edition Cambridge University Press, 2014 – (ISBN: 9781107616899)

Malouf. Fly Away Peter – Vintage, 1999

Unit 2

Fitzgerald. The Great Gatsby (Penguin Modern Classics) Penguin ISBN: 9780141182636

Euripides. Medea /Hecabe /Electra /Heracles (translation by Philip Vellacott) Penguin Classics. ISBN: 9780140441291

Things to think about

From our experience we believe you will need to be an independent reader with established writing skills. It is important to plan ahead and make time for extensive reading tasks.

Things you can do now

If you intend to enrol in the subject, access the booklist quickly so you use the time over the summer break to read your texts for enjoyment.

You could take the time to access online resources for background information on the author’s works we will be studying. For example, you could do some background reading about Shakespeare or Robert Louis Stevenson. There is a lot of information available online or in your library, that can help you familiarise yourself with the time period and the language of the set texts.

Go to the VCAA website for more information about this subject.



Things to have a look at

What is Literature for?

This video takes an interesting look at what Literature is used for in society.