B.A. Thesis

Bc Thesis: Language Proficiency and Cultural Studies

The thesis must be written in English and must contain a brief summary in Czech.

It must have an introduction, a theoretical part, the main body and a conclusion. The introduction must state the aims of the thesis, a basic hypothesis and expected results. The brief theoretical part should put forward relevant ideas found through study of theoretical literature published on the subject. The main body of the thesis should be a presentation, analysis and discussion of facts and opinions published in newspapers, journals, opinion polls, on the Internet, etc. In addition, it is recommended that the author should conduct a brief survey of opinions of students, learners of English, citizens in general, etc. on the basis of self-created questionnaires. The thesis must have a conclusion stating whether the hypothesis has been confirmed, and what results have been obtained and how.

The overall form should be a long academic essay that should follow the principles learned in the Academic Writing classes that are part of the department’s curriculum.

It should have a minimum of 40 standard pages (72 000 symbols) and a list of cited sources (using the MLA citation rules) and excluding appendices.

Any attempt at plagiarizing will disqualify the thesis and will lead to its non-acceptance.

Students are strongly encouraged to come up with their own ideas for the thesis’ topic.
Sample topics:
1. Choose an area of culture in which you think Czech and British society differs significantly, and discuss the difference.

2. In what ways is the English language changing the world?

3. How have newer communication technologies (the Internet, cellular phones, ICQ, etc.) influenced communication and language?

4. What, and how, do people read in the 21st century?

5. The impact of English on today’s Czech.

 

Bc Thesis: Literary Studies

The Literary Studies Bachelor’s thesis should focus on an interpretation of one, or at the most two novels or plays (if the candidate wishes to choose short fiction or poetry, the chosen work or works is/are to be discussed with the supervisor).

The thesis must be written in English and must contain a brief summary in Czech. It must have an introduction, a theoretical part, the main body and a conclusion.

The introduction must state the aims of the thesis. A brief theoretical part should put forward relevant ideas found through the study of theoretical literature published on the subject. It should also give a brief outline of the context in which the text under discussion was produced. Autobiographical data should be mentioned only where relevant for the interpretation. The main body of the thesis should be a critical analysis and therefore, a retelling of the plot of the novel or play should be given only if relevant to the interpretation under question.

The overall form should be a long academic essay that should follow the principles learned in the Academic Writing classes and British and American Literature classes that are part of the department’s curriculum.

It should have a minimum of 40 standard pages (72 000 symbols) and a list of cited sources (using the MLA citation rules) and excluding appendices.

Any attempt at plagiarizing will disqualify the thesis and will lead to its non-acceptance.

Students are strongly encouraged to come up with their own ideas for the thesis’ topic.
Sample topics:
1. Using two novels by two different writers (Orwell, Burgess, McEwan, Martin Amis and others) analyze and discuss the development of dystopia as a theme in post-WWII British literature.

2. Analyze and discuss the narrative techniques and strategies in one or two novels by a contemporary British author (Rushdie, Ishiguro, McEwan, Martin Amis, Barnes, Byatt, Swift, Winterson, Smith)

3. Discuss the quest for identity in one or two novels by a contemporary British hyphenated writer (Naipaul, Kureishi, Smith, Ali, Caryl Phillips, Syal, Howard Jacobson, Alderman and others.)

4. Taboo topics in Kate Chopin’s short stories.

5. Crime and punishment in Native Son by Richard Wright.

 

Bc Thesis: Translation

Translation and stylistic analysis 
Part 1: The student translates 15 – 30 standard pages of short fiction, poetry, drama or philosophy written by one author. The text should not span more than one genre and must be written in complex and idiomatic English, ideally with direct speech and dialect. The output format is a side-by-side English-Czech translation. The source text must be an original English piece of writing which has not been officially translated into Czech by the time the topic is assigned (according to generally available information), or which has been translated by the author of the prospective BA thesis himself/herself.

Part 2: Approx. 10 – 25 standard pages will be devoted to a stylistic analysis of the text and/or authorial comment which rests primarily on the theoretical framework (see Theory) and which clarifies or justifies e.g. the choice of language register (possibly colloquial), the Czech idiom used in the target translation, etc.

A juxtaposition of two or more Czech translations
Alternatively, students might also choose to write a thesis which seeks to compare and contrast two or more Czech translations of a book written in English. The juxtaposed translations should have been published at least 15 years apart (see the last sample topic) so that the thesis might also explore the shift in Czech vernacular and other cultural considerations. The thesis must not exceed 35 standard pages, excluding bibliography. Direct quotes from the English original and Czech translations should constitute less than 20 per cent of the text.

Any attempt at plagiarizing will disqualify the thesis and will lead to its non-acceptance.

Students are strongly encouraged to come up with their own ideas for the thesis’ topic.

Theory:

The thesis needs a brief theoretical framework. This will draw primarily (though not exclusively) on the following publications:
Levý, J. (1958): Úvod do teorie překladu, Praha, Panorama.
Mounin, G. (1992): Teoretické problémy překladu, Praha, Karolinum – nakladatelství UK
Sample topics:

1. The translation and stylistic analysis of Nicola Keegan’s Swimming (one chapter).

2. Exploring the contrast between the highly intellectualised inner monologue and raw vernacular found in Oxherding Tale by Charles Johnson – a translation and stylistic analysis of one chapter.

3. Nuances and ambiguities in Alasdair Gray’s short stories – a translation and stylistic analysis.

4. Two Czech translations of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando – a juxtaposition.

 

Bc. Thesis: English Linguistics

This thesis should have a minimum of 40 standard pages (72 000 symbols), including the title page, table of contents, key words, abstract, introduction, conclusion, footnotes/endnotes, reference to primary and secondary sources, a Czech summary, etc. It should embody original research carried out by the author (with reasonable guidance provided by the supervisor) and should be based on careful scrutiny of authentic data. It must be stressed that compilations of various secondary sources alone do not constitute the thesis and will not be accepted. The results of the original research should be adequately presented and thoroughly interpreted, and, most importantly, convincing conclusions should be drawn from the research.

The thesis will be written in English. Its formulation should be clear, succinct and coherent, adhering to all conventions common in academic writing (for this thesis – the MLA citation style will be used).

Any attempt at plagiarizing will disqualify the thesis and will lead to its non-acceptance.

Students are strongly encouraged to come up with their own ideas for the thesis’ topic.
Sample topics:
1. Nuances of Implicational Fall-Rise

2. The Role of Phonetico-Morphological Patterns of Selected Acronyms

3. Qualifying genitive in contemporary English

4. Indefinite Specific Subjects in English Texts

Note:
Second-year students are encouraged to come up with their own proposals for their Bc. theses in all the disciplines taught at the Department (Modern English, Cultural Studies, Linguistic disciplines, British and American literature and Translation). Individual students can contact the teachers of the subjects of their proposed theses in order to consult the feasibility of their topics.