Students of the Delhi University who opt for the fiction elective course will now study the popular J K Rowling book Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and Chetan Bhagat’s Five Point Someone as part of their undergraduate programme.
These books will be a part of the Generic Elective’s Popular Literature paper. The elective is offered in this programme under the Choice-Based Credit System (CBCS). Honours students have to select any four subjects from the general elective pool. Popular Fiction is part of the general elective pool.
The Committee of courses passed the new syllabus for programmes offered by the English Department last week. The new course list is yet to get the approval of the academic and executive council.
Other popular books added by the co are Little Women by Louisa May Alcott and Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie.
The inclusion of these new books in popular fiction has been received with criticism. Many of the experts are saying that the books do not match the level of undergraduate studies. English Teacher at Ramjas College, Debraj Mookerjee, said that it is not exemplary to replace Amitav Ghosh and Tagore’s extraordinary books with these books.
Talking about this change in course line, Khalsa College Teacher, Kuljeet Singh, said that popular literature has a veracity of its own. He questioned the change and said that Five Point Someone does not suit the requirement of popular literature. The book might be a bestseller but does not match the level of books required for the course, he added.
Few of the teachers in the English department supported the decision. Some said that it is better for students to study contemporary social issues portrayed by the new writers rather than struggling through experiences that are not part of the modern world anymore.