Classics of Christian humanism: European classics of Christian humanism, from the 19th to the 20th century. The aim of the course is to analyse the relationship between literature and society, between literature and European culture, and between literature and Christian humanism, through a selection of the great authors and literary works of the 20th century. We will study some authors of European literature (especially French and English) and their dissemination, focusing on the circulation of a series of works and literary currents that from the end of the 19th century, covering the entire inter-war period up to the 1940s, interpret the European cultural debate and mark literary evolution.
Type Subject
Previous Knowledge

The aim of the course is to study in depth the various literary forms of the contemporary age and to relate them to elements of Christianity and literary criticism, in order to discover the plurality of forms and sensibilities in contemporary literature and to situate the authors in their own cultural and intellectual context and their contribution to 20th century literature.


Topic 1: Introduction
1.1 Literature and humanism: a general approach
1.2. Authors and works. Chronology

Topic 2: European literature between the wars
2.1 The spiritualist revival in interwar Europe
2.2. Dissemination of Dostoyevsky

Topic 3: Novel of the human condition
3.1. Manifestations of the novel of the human condition
3.3. The Catholic novel as a form of the existentialist novel

Topic 4: Graham Greene, existentialist novelist
4.1. Greene in his time. Career
4.2. The European context: from Mauriac to Greene
4.3. Greene and the genre novel

Topic 5: Reading: The Quiet American (1955)
5.1. Literature and political engagement: context of the novel
5.2. Analysing themes and characters
5.3. Analysis of the film: The Quiet American (2002)



In-person methodology

The teaching methodology to be used in the teaching of the subject is as follows:

Classroom work:

1. Lectures. Lectures refer to a presentation by the lecturer of the theoretical contents of the subject, orientation of the students on basic and advanced readings, as well as complementary sources of information and the establishment of guidelines and keys for carrying out the theoretical-practical tasks.
2. Continuous assessment Assessment is an integrated part of the teaching-learning process. In this subject there will be continuous assessment that will combine the submission and presentation of assignments with the development of objective (written) tests throughout the semester. At the same time, the teacher will give feedback on the student’s progress.

Work or activities outside the classroom:

3. Autonomous work by students. The autonomous work of students consists, on the one hand, of reading selected texts and preparing outlines, summaries, concept maps, etc. based on them; and on the other hand, of preparing individual work , especially essays and oral presentations.
4. Tutorial sessions. All students will have the possibility of requesting individual or group tutorials, by appointment, from the teaching staff. These tutorials may be aimed at resolving doubts regarding both the content and the preparation of the assignments.


Continuous assessment. Participation and oral presentations. 40%
Final project. Individual written work. 60%

Evaluation Criteria


The assessment criteria are the same as in the ordinary exam, so all the assessment activities considered in the course must be provided. Marks will be kept for all the activities carried out, pending the completion of any pending activities. The same weighting criteria will be applied in this assessment as in the ordinary assessment.

Basic Bibliography

BERDIAEV, N. El espíritu de Dostoievski, Granada, Nuevo Inicio, 2008.
BRUNA, S. Graham Greene i els escriptors catòlics francesos, Barcelona: Cruïlla-FJM, 2015.
FORSTER, E. M., Aspects of the Novel, Harmondsworth, Penguin, 1988 [trad. al castellano]
GREENE, G. The Quiet American (1955)/ L’americà pacific / El americano tranquilo.
KER, I., The Catholic Revival in English Literature 1845-1961, Notre Dame Press, 2003.
LLUCH, C., La novel·la católica a Catalunya (1939-1968), Barcelona: Publicacions de l’Abadia de Montserrat, 2009.
MOELLER, Ch., Literatura del siglo XX y cristianismo, 5 vols., trad. Valentín García Yebra, Madrid: Gredos, 1955.
RAIMOND, M., Le Roman depuis la Révolution, París, Armand Colin, 1981.

Additional Material

A dossier of texts and complementary bibliography on the authors of the course will be distributed in class.