The MA course in Arthurian Literature is an exciting, long-standing, and successful academic course that benefits from the expertise of world-class academics, outstanding library resources, and a unique location with medieval roots in the legend. A good first degree in English or relevant area is required. Research skills taught during the first semester will enable students to engage with a variety of interdisciplinary approaches and sources, ranging from theoretical, historical and cultural aspects of the Arthurian myth.
Arthurian Literature is an established area of expertise in the School of English at Bangor University and has been taught here for over three decades. A long-standing record of teaching, research and publication attests to its vitality; the main specialists in the field are Dr Raluca Radulescu, whose work has focused on Malory, Arthurian romances and chronicles, especially through a cultural approach, and Professor PJC Field, currently President of the International Arthurian Society, and world-renowned for his work on the Arthurian legend through the centuries. However the course also draws upon the expertise available in other periods of literature within the School of English and other schools in the College of Arts and Humanities, ranging from post-medieval approaches in the School of English, or medieval Welsh, History and Archaeology, and Music. Staff in these areas contribute regularly to the teaching of Arthurian topics ranging from the medieval period to the present, including music and modern film adaptations.
Why Bangor for Arthurian Studies?
The attractiveness of the MA in Arthurian Literature at Bangor lies in its flexible, though comprehensive, approach to the study of this area. Students may choose to specialise in either the medieval or the post-medieval period but they will be required to take both modules with these titles in order to benefit from the wide coverage of the Arthurian legend they provide. At the same time they can enjoy all the benefits of one-to-one supervision in the Open Essay options, while also developing their research skills in the Introduction to Literary Theory, Scholarship and Research Module (shared with the MA in English). Moreover, in-depth introductions to the study of medieval palaeography and codicology are available by collaboration with other relevant schools and disciplines, as a preparation to PhD level (see collaborative doctoral training scheme in palaeography and codicology organised by Dr Raluca Radulescu).
The MA in Arthurian Literature course consists of two parts. Part One may be organised as a combination of the core Introduction to Literary Theory, Scholarship and Research Module with one Open Essay, and the modules titled Medieval Arthur and Post-Medieval Arthur. Subject to availability, students may choose relevant modules in medieval Welsh literature/Welsh Arthurian literature offered in the School of Welsh.
Part One must be successfully completed before proceeding to the second part, the dissertation. In certain circumstances, you may be eligible for a Diploma or Certificate if you are unable to proceed to part two. The dissertation is a substantial piece of scholarly research, on a subject of your own choice, chosen and discussed in detail with a chosen supervisor.
Other Related Activities
Students who have completed, or are in the course of studying for an MA, usually participate in the activities of the Centre for Medieval Studies, including the medieval research seminar (where they are invited to present their research) and the annual international postgraduate conference, ‘Medievalism Transformed’, now in its fourth year.
Current and past research students have engaged in higher degrees, teaching, research and librarianship in higher education (UK, US, Japan, and elsewhere), publishing, and a range of related activities. Kevin Whetter is now Associate Professor at Acadia University, Canada, and has co-edited Re-Viewing Le Morte Darthur (Cambridge: DS Brewer, 2005); Dr Takako Kato is Research Associate at the Centre for Textual Scholarship, De Montfort University, and her study Caxton's 'Morte Darthur': The Printing Process and the Authenticity of the Text, was published at Oxford in the Medium Aevum monograph series, in 2002; Professor Yuri Fuwa teaches at Keio University, Japan; Dr Michael Cichon is Professor at the University of Saskatchewan, Dr John Joseph Doherty works in a US university library, and Dr Mark Adderley is Professor of English at Missouri Valley College.