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MA English and Cultural Studies

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  • Objectives
    You’ll explore current critical debates in literary and cultural studies by studying a wide range of literature and culture, from the early modern period to contemporary popular culture, from a variety of perspectives.
  • Entry requirements
    Applicants should normally have a first degree in English or related discipline, such as cultural studies, history or media studies.
  • Academic Title
    MA English and Cultural Studies
  • Course description
    Course structure
    A core module provides critical and research skills essential to your studies by examining thinkers, theories and methods central to contemporary literary and cultural studies. A diverse range of option modules covers topics such as representations of the body in Renaissance culture, late 19th-century sensation fiction, feminist appropriations of the past in contemporary fiction and film, travel writing, modernism and empire, and representations of ‘race’ and slavery. You’ll research a topic of your own choice through a negotiated learning module which will also act as preparation for your dissertation.

    Careers
    Graduates will be equipped for careers in teaching, publishing, professional writing and the creative and cultural industries or for further academic study at MPhil or PhD level.

    This exciting new MA explores the dynamic debates which define contemporary literary and cultural studies. You can opt to study for a certificate, diploma or master's award.

    More information
    Core modules


    Thinkers, Theories and Methods (40 credits)
    This module will enable you to develop an understanding of a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of English and Cultural Studies.

    Negotiated Learning Project (20 credits)
    This module will give you the opportunity to work on a topic within the field of English and Cultural Studies that you have negotiated with your supervisor.

    English and Cultural Studies Dissertation (60 credits)
    You will undertake a self-conceived piece of independent research and produce an extended essay under the guidance of a nominated supervisor.

    Option modules

    You take three options from a range which may include:

    Renaissance Bodies (20 credits)
    This module explores the ways in which Renaissance culture sought to understand the human body. The module will examine conflicting models of the body as represented within the literary and artistic culture of early modern Europe and will explore the body as a contested site of cultural meaning and value.

    Sensation Fiction (20 credits)
    This module will enable you to study a range of Victorian sensation novels. You'll consider the relationships of the genre with those in other areas of Victorian popular fiction (for example gothic, crime and melodrama) and to situate it within the wider social and cultural frameworks of the Victorian literary marketplace.

    'Race', Representation and Slavery (20 credits)
    This module will explore representations of American slavery in nineteenth century, twentieth century and contemporary American culture. It includes autobiography, fiction, television and film. It will investigate the complex relationship between representation and history and will critically examine the cultural politics of representation in relation to issues of identity and 'race'.

    Travel Writing, Modernism and Imperialism (20 credits)
    This module addresses travel and travel writing in the Modernist period, the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century as a key interdisciplinary subject ranging across the academic disciplines of literary and cultural studies, history, social anthropology and cultural geography.

    Rewriting the Past: Feminisms, Fictions and Histories (20 credits)
    This module will examine the fictional reconstruction of gendered histories as a significant representational strategy in late twentieth century and contemporary culture. More specifically, it will focus on fictions, including novels and film, which foreground the historical and cultural construction of sexed, gendered and sexual identities; it will situate 'rewriting the past' within the context of feminist debates about the relationship between gender, history and representation.

    Writing Place and Culture
    (20 credits)
    This module develops a theme of representation by exploring constructions of place, region and community in fictional texts between 1780 and 1945. It aims to build on the existing knowledge and understanding of historical context that you have and, by proposing that texts are constitutive as well as reflective, encourage and develop the use of imaginative texts as historical source material.

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