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I'm an overseas exchange student coming to Durham in September for course in English Literature. I'd like to know if there is anyone doing English there and do you buy the books that you're going to read in classes? When will you know the reading list and how much time do you have to get the copies of the reading?

Besides, can you recommend some ways to buy cheaper/second-hand books?

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Original post by lltina
I'm an overseas exchange student coming to Durham in September for course in English Literature. I'd like to know if there is anyone doing English there and do you buy the books that you're going to read in classes? When will you know the reading list and how much time do you have to get the copies of the reading?

Besides, can you recommend some ways to buy cheaper/second-hand books?

Hi there

You can talk to a current English Lit student on UniBuddy and find out the exact details from them. More generally though, I did buy second-hand books from a second-year law student but ended up not really using them because they have copies available in the library plus online versions as well. As for the reading list, we had an induction day just before lectures began where each professor told us about the main books they recommend. You also get a login id (four letters, 2 numbers. eg: abcd12) for Blackboard which is where all the course content is hosted including lecture handouts, lecture recordings and any other course announcements. That page also contains a reading list for all modules with links to any available online/offline versions.

If you have to buy second-hand books, you can use Unihustl which is a Durham-based business where students put up their books for sale. People also use Waterstones but that's mostly for fresh books as far as I know. There are also two Facebook pages where students post ads for their books:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/272895459496646/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/OverheardAtDurham/

Hope that answers it!

-Himieka (Official DU Rep)
(edited 1 year ago)
Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
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Reply 2
Wow that's very detailed! thanks a lot
For exams where you are allowed to bring in original texts, they specify which version and it has to be unmarked (unless that has changed recently), so you may need to purchase some new, clean books.

The reading lists for English Lit are really long (I think about 500 books for all 6 modules) but you certainly aren’t expected to read them all.
Reply 4
Hi Iltina
My daughter did Year 1 English Literature last year and is changing to a different degree this September so has all the Year 1 course books (there are so many!) as long as they don't change the reading list too much. When you get the reading list please let us know as we can sell you all the books for half price if you are interested and bring them to Durham next month if you like. Most of them have not been read so are in new condition. Let me know if interested. Many thanks, Julie
Original post by jsabin
Hi Iltina
My daughter did Year 1 English Literature last year and is changing to a different degree this September so has all the Year 1 course books (there are so many!) as long as they don't change the reading list too much. When you get the reading list please let us know as we can sell you all the books for half price if you are interested and bring them to Durham next month if you like. Most of them have not been read so are in new condition. Let me know if interested. Many thanks, Julie

Hi Julie, if the offer is still open, i think my daughter might like to get some too....
Reply 6
Original post by Anonymous
Hi Julie, if the offer is still open, i think my daughter might like to get some too....


Yes the books are still available- I didn’t realise the original post was from last year! Do you want me to list which ones we have? Julie
Original post by jsabin
Yes the books are still available- I didn’t realise the original post was from last year! Do you want me to list which ones we have? Julie

Thanks. Yes that would be helpful. Dud your child use them all for first year? We're they compulsory or optional to have?
Reply 8
Yes they were all compulsory but some will be module specific - my daughter quit English Lit in the second term so they are like new, I will list them below:

1. The English Bible - The New Testament and the Apocrypha
1.b The English Bible The Old Testamant, King James version edited by Herbert Marks
2. The Iliad, Homer
3. The Odyssey, Homer
4. Beowulf, Seamus Heaney
5. Hamlet, Shakespeare 2nd Norton Critical Edition
6. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
7. Classical Literary Criticism, Oxford World's Classics
8. 12 Years a Slave, Solomen Northup
9. North and South, Elizabeth Gaskell
10. Plato Rebublic, a new translation by Robert Waterfield
11. The Poetic Edda, Translated by Carolyne Larrington
12. Seneca Six Tragedies, a new translation by Emily Wilson
13. A Choice of Anglo-Saxon verse edited by Richard Hamer
14. The Saga of the People of Laxardal and Bolli Bollasan's Tale
15. Egil's Saga
16. Bede - Ecclesiastical History of the English People
17. Gisli Sursson's Saga and The Saga of the People of Eyri
18. Watchmen by Alan Moore and David Gibbons
19. The Norton Anthology English Literature 10th Edition The Sixteenth and Early Seventeenth century
20. The Norton Anthology of Poetry sixth edition
21. The Norton Anthology English Literature 10th edition The Restoration and The Eighteenth Century
22. The Norton Anthology English Literature 10th edition The Middle Ages
23. Le Morte Darthur, Sir Thomas Malory edited by Stephen H A Shepherd
21. The Riverside Chaucer 3rd edition with new forward by Christopher Cannon
22. Bleak House Charles Dickens
23. Middle English Romances, selected and edited by Stephen H A Shepherd
24. Moll Flanders, Daniel Defoe edited by Albert J Rivero
25. Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad edited by Paul B Armstrong
26. Angels in America ( A Gay Fantasia on National Themes) Tony Kushner, revised and complete edition
27. The Rover, Aphra Behn revised edition edited by Robyn Bolam
28. The Song of Roland, Penguin Classics
29. Death of a Salesman Arthur Miller
30. In Cold Blood, Truman Capote
31. The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien illustrated by Jemima Catlin
32. Emma, Jane Austen edited by George Justice
33. Wide Sargasso Sea, Jean Rhys
34. Pygmalion, Bernard Shaw
35. The Lais of Marie de France
36. Top Girls, Caryl Church, Bloomsbury
37. Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdie 40th anniversary edition
38. Death and The King's Horseman, Wole Soyinka, edited by Simon Gikandi
39. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, revised edition edited by W R J Barron
40. The Selected Poetry and Prose of Shelley, Wordsworth Potery Library
41. The Importance of being Earnest and Other Plays, Oscar Wilde, Oxford World's Classics
42. Chrétien de Troyes, Arthurian Romances
43. Metamorphose, Ovid, Translated and Edited by Charles Martin
44. Antigone, Oedipus the King and Electra, Sophocles
(edited 5 months ago)
Original post by jsabin
Yes they were all compulsory but some will be module specific - my daughter quit English Lit in the second term so they are like new, I will list them below:

1. The English Bible - The New Testament and the Apocrypha
1.b The English Bible The Old Testamant, King James version edited by Herbert Marks
2. The Iliad, Homer
3. The Odyssey, Homer
4. Beowulf, Seamus Heaney
5. Hamlet, Shakespeare 2nd Norton Critical Edition
6. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
7. Classical Literary Criticism, Oxford World's Classics
8. 12 Years a Slave, Solomen Northup
9. North and South, Elizabeth Gaskell
10. Plato Rebublic, a new translation by Robert Waterfield
11. The Poetic Edda, Translated by Carolyne Larrington
12. Seneca Six Tragedies, a new translation by Emily Wilson
13. A Choice of Anglo-Saxon verse edited by Richard Hamer
14. The Saga of the People of Laxardal and Bolli Bollasan's Tale
15. Egil's Saga
16. Bede - Ecclesiastical History of the English People
17. Gisli Sursson's Saga and The Saga of the People of Eyri
18. Watchmen by Alan Moore and David Gibbons
19. The Norton Anthology English Literature 10th Edition The Sixteenth and Early Seventeenth century
20. The Norton Anthology of Poetry sixth edition
21. The Norton Anthology English Literature 10th edition The Restoration and The Eighteenth Century
22. The Norton Anthology English Literature 10th edition The Middle Ages
23. Le Morte Darthur, Sir Thomas Malory edited by Stephen H A Shepherd
21. The Riverside Chaucer 3rd edition with new forward by Christopher Cannon
22. Bleak House Charles Dickens
23. Middle English Romances, selected and edited by Stephen H A Shepherd
24. Moll Flanders, Daniel Defoe edited by Albert J Rivero
25. Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad edited by Paul B Armstrong
26. Angels in America ( A Gay Fantasia on National Themes) Tony Kushner, revised and complete edition
27. The Rover, Aphra Behn revised edition edited by Robyn Bolam
28. The Song of Roland, Penguin Classics
29. Death of a Salesman Arthur Miller
30. In Cold Blood, Truman Capote
31. The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien illustrated by Jemima Catlin
32. Emma, Jane Austen edited by George Justice
33. Wide Sargasso Sea, Jean Rhys
34. Pygmalion, Bernard Shaw
35. The Lais of Marie de France
36. Top Girls, Caryl Church, Bloomsbury
37. Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdie 40th anniversary edition
38. Death and The King's Horseman, Wole Soyinka, edited by Simon Gikandi
39. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, revised edition edited by W R J Barron
40. The Selected Poetry and Prose of Shelley, Wordsworth Potery Library
41. The Importance of being Earnest and Other Plays, Oscar Wilde, Oxford World's Classics
42. Chrétien de Troyes, Arthurian Romances
43. Metamorphose, Ovid, Translated and Edited by Charles Martin
44. Antigone, Oedipus the King and Electra, Sophocles

Thank you so much for the detailed list of books.
Might I ask, neither than the 3 compulsory modules, what other modules did your daughter opt to take?
Reply 10
Original post by Anonymous
Thank you so much for the detailed list of books.
Might I ask, neither than the 3 compulsory modules, what other modules did your daughter opt to take?


Ancient Worlds and English Literature
Romance and the Literature of Chivalry
Epic and Literature of Legend
Original post by jsabin
Ancient Worlds and English Literature
Romance and the Literature of Chivalry
Epic and Literature of Legend

Ah, she did all 3. That's pretty heavy. Did she finish any of these modules? My daughter is trying to decide between Ancient Worlds and Epic.... Wondering if your daughter might have some insight.
I'll send my daughter the list and ask her to go through and see what she needs.
When will you be heading back up to Durham?
Reply 12
Original post by Anonymous
Ah, she did all 3. That's pretty heavy. Did she finish any of these modules? My daughter is trying to decide between Ancient Worlds and Epic.... Wondering if your daughter might have some insight.
I'll send my daughter the list and ask her to go through and see what she needs.
When will you be heading back up to Durham?


My daughter preferred Ancient Worlds (she is switching to Ancient History this year!) but says it depends on your daughter's interests! We are moving her in to her house in Central Durham on Saturday 16th then she's coming home before returning in time for Fresher's week on Saturday 23rd.
Original post by jsabin
My daughter preferred Ancient Worlds (she is switching to Ancient History this year!) but says it depends on your daughter's interests! We are moving her in to her house in Central Durham on Saturday 16th then she's coming home before returning in time for Fresher's week on Saturday 23rd.

Thanks for the information. Yes, my daughter is also leaning towards Ancient World, especially since she has done some of the texts on IB.
If it works, we will let you know which books before you head up on the 23rd. We arrive in Durham on the 18th. I will keep you posted. Thank you so much. I appreciate all your help and the offer of the discounted books.
Reply 14
Original post by Anonymous
Thanks for the information. Yes, my daughter is also leaning towards Ancient World, especially since she has done some of the texts on IB.
If it works, we will let you know which books before you head up on the 23rd. We arrive in Durham on the 18th. I will keep you posted. Thank you so much. I appreciate all your help and the offer of the discounted books.


No problem - I have them posted on the Durham Uni Facebook pages too, so it will be a case of first come first served. I hope you understand. The full reading list was over £400 so we are looking to sell as many as we can!
Original post by jsabin
No problem - I have them posted on the Durham Uni Facebook pages too, so it will be a case of first come first served. I hope you understand. The full reading list was over £400 so we are looking to sell as many as we can!


Yes, I understand. Of course.
Reply 16
(Original post by Anonymous)Thanks for the information. Yes, my daughter is also leaning towards Ancient World, especially since she has done some of the texts on IB.
If it works, we will let you know which books before you head up on the 23rd. We arrive in Durham on the 18th. I will keep you posted. Thank you so much. I appreciate all your help and the offer of the discounted books.

Hi again, I just re-read your message about telling us which books you might want before 23rd. Actually we are driving up with all my daughter's things this Friday 15th so that will be the only opportunity to take the books up. (My daughter will then be moving in the following weekend, but travelling by train.) Otherwise I might keep them at home and sell them individually on Ebay as my daughter won't want them all in her room in case they don't sell in Durham. Can your daughter decide before Friday or is she waiting to see if she can source them elsewhere? Thank you, Julie
Original post by jsabin
(Original post by Anonymous)Thanks for the information. Yes, my daughter is also leaning towards Ancient World, especially since she has done some of the texts on IB.
If it works, we will let you know which books before you head up on the 23rd. We arrive in Durham on the 18th. I will keep you posted. Thank you so much. I appreciate all your help and the offer of the discounted books.

Hi again, I just re-read your message about telling us which books you might want before 23rd. Actually we are driving up with all my daughter's things this Friday 15th so that will be the only opportunity to take the books up. (My daughter will then be moving in the following weekend, but travelling by train.) Otherwise I might keep them at home and sell them individually on Ebay as my daughter won't want them all in her room in case they don't sell in Durham. Can your daughter decide before Friday or is she waiting to see if she can source them elsewhere? Thank you, Julie


Hi Julie
I understand. She was waiting to see if module selection was approved. I'll let you know by Wednesday at the latest. Thank you.
Reply 18
Original post by Anonymous
Hi Julie
I understand. She was waiting to see if module selection was approved. I'll let you know by Wednesday at the latest. Thank you.

Hi - we are leaving tomorrow afternoon so just thought I would check in to see if your daughter wanted any of the books. We are dropping a few off at halls for other buyers so let me know either way. Thank you!
Original post by jsabin
Hi - we are leaving tomorrow afternoon so just thought I would check in to see if your daughter wanted any of the books. We are dropping a few off at halls for other buyers so let me know either way. Thank you!

Hi Julie
I've sent you a message directly.

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