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Masters Degrees (Romanticism)

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The Eighteenth-Century Literature and Romanticism pathway uses interdisciplinary approaches to explore the origins and impact of the Romantic movement and literature’s connections with philosophy, politics, history, and culture from 1700 to 1830. Read more


The Eighteenth-Century Literature and Romanticism pathway uses interdisciplinary approaches to explore the origins and impact of the Romantic movement and literature’s connections with philosophy, politics, history, and culture from 1700 to 1830.

Register your interest

Apply now

This MA pathway combines close reading of texts by a wide range of male and female authors with interdisciplinary study of the broader culture of the 18th and early 19th centuries, examining the period’s dramatic changes in literature and literary theory alongside developments in philosophy, politics, history, and other art forms. We explore the popular culture of the coffee house and tavern, the political world on the street and in parliament, the vocations of women poets and polemicists, polite society and its management of the emotions, epistolary culture, religious dissent, and the metropolitan life of London. We also study the influence of the Enlightenment, the origins and impact of the Romantic movement, the role of literary manifestos and defences, generic innovation and experiment, periodical culture, Romantic science and medicine, relations between British and European Romanticism, the French Revolution and its aftershocks, and the literary and artistic culture of the Regency.

The pathway combines specially-designed core and elective modules with the opportunity to select further options from across the whole range of MA modules on offer in the Department of English. You may also opt to take a cognate elective module offered by other Schools in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and by other Colleges of the University of London.

The Department of English has notable research and teaching strengths in both the eighteenth century and Romanticism, with the highest concentration of staff in these fields anywhere in London and one of the highest in the UK. Recently appointed staff in Romanticism include Pamela Clemit, an authority on William Godwin and Mary Shelley, and David Duff, author of Romanticism and the Uses of Genre and editor of The Oxford Handbook of British Romanticism. They join Paul Hamilton, a renowned scholar and theorist of British and European Romanticism, James Vigus, author of Platonic Coleridge and series editor of the Henry Crabb Robinson Project, and Shahidha Bari, author of Keats and Philosophy and a well-known broadcaster.

Staff working on eighteenth-century topics include Markman Ellis, author The Coffee-House: A Cultural History and The History of Gothic Fiction, Chris Reid, an expert on Burke, Sheridan and the history of oratory, Tessa Whitehouse, author of The Textual Culture of English Protestant Dissent 1720-1800, Isabel Rivers, founder of the Dissenting Academies Project, and Barbara Taylor, author of Mary Wollstonecraft and the Feminist Imagination. Matthew Mauger and Richard Coulton both work on the cultural history of London, their joint publications including (with Markman Ellis) The Empire of Tea: The Asian Leaf that Conquered the World and (with Chris Reid) Stealing Books in Eighteenth Century London. For further details see individual staff pages.

 

Compulsory modules:


Option modules:

You choose three modules from a list of options that changes from year to year (one can be from the range of modules offered across the MA English Studies curriculum). In 2017-2018 we hope to offer the following. If members of our specialist research staff win research funding it will mean that their module won’t run, so for that reason this list is indicative only. 

You may, subject to availability and the approval of the School, take one of your option modules from across a range offered by other Schools in the Humanities and Social Science Faculty, or from other Colleges of the University of London.

In addition to taught modules, we run a range of research seminars to which all MA students are invited. Some of these are linked to our interdisciplinary Research Centres, such as the Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies, the Centre for Religion and Literature in English and the Centre for the History of the Emotions.



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The writing and thought of the Romantic period has long been central to the study of modern literatures in English, and recent developments in literary theory have underlined the continuing importance of changing conceptions and practices of literature and philosophy in this period. Read more

The writing and thought of the Romantic period has long been central to the study of modern literatures in English, and recent developments in literary theory have underlined the continuing importance of changing conceptions and practices of literature and philosophy in this period.

Whether your interests lie in major figures such as Wordsworth, Scott or Mary Shelley, or more neglected writers such as Joanna Baillie; or in the relationship between literature and philosophy, or literature and society, this programme offers you the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of supervised independent research in your chosen area.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of romanticism, and have particular strengths in philosophical approaches to romantic literature, in Irish and Scottish romanticism, and in the 18th century background to romantic literature.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000-word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of Romantic literature and culture related to their chosen fields and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.



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This programme draws on specialist staff with expertise in Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Literature, Romanticism, Children’s Literature, and Contemporary Literature and theory. Read more
This programme draws on specialist staff with expertise in Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Literature, Romanticism, Children’s Literature, and Contemporary Literature and theory. It also makes use of the holdings of the Special Collections of the Roderic Bowen Library: a unique resource which houses the Special Collections of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, including over 35,000 printed works.

Course Overview

Underpinned by instruction in advanced research methods and skills and the comparative study of theoretically informed critical approaches, this MA, based on the Lampeter Campus of the University, enables students to undertake an advanced level study of literature in English and associated aspects of culture in the period from 1790 to the present day.

Romanticism, post-Romanticism, the Victorian, Decadence, Modernism, Post-modernism – are explored in two core modules, ‘Visions of Society’ and ‘The Shock of the New’. Informed by established and emerging theoretical positions, these will critically examine the connections and tensions between the ideas and kinds of literary production traditionally associated with those movements: for example, the emergence of the individual, shifts in religious belief, the importance of the city and urbanisation, attitudes to class, race and gender, the dominance of the novel and the impact of new media forms, commodification and the emergence of competing views of the real.

These modules are supported by topic-specific modules reflecting staff expertise, for example the consideration of the figure of the child as a shifting ideological construct within and across these movements; writing by American Black Women writers; and the utopian urge in the literature of the period.

Modules

-Research Methods
-Comparative and Critical Approaches
-Visions of Society
-The Shock of the New

And optional modules in topics such as:
-Utopian and Dystopian Fiction
-The Child in Time
-Black American Women Writers

Key Features

The programmes are delivered on the University’s campus in Lampeter. They are taught through seminars, small workshops and individual tutorials and supervision that enable detailed and personalised feedback.

Access to a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) enables additional learning, especially work-shopping, to take place outside the sessions and supports the development of a mutually supportive cohort of committed writers. Graduates from the programmes have gone on to become successful and prize winning authors.

Moreover this programme will offer:
-Expert tuition from research active specialist staff
-Exceptional resources in the specialist holdings of the Roderic Bown Library
-Small seminar based classes
-Residential programme based on our beautiful and inpiring campus in Lampeter
-Online and distance learing option

Assessment

Assessment is through a mixture of assignment and presentation supported by tasks designed to enhance research skills. The dissertation allows students to undertake a sustained research project on a topic of their choice under expert individual supervision.

Career Opportunities

-Professional Writers
-Editors
-Publishers
-Marketing
-Expert tuition from professional writers, poets, novelists, dramatists, script-writers
-An opportunity to learn about publishing through the design and production of the annual anthology
-An opportunity to read your work at such events as the Hay Festival
-Programme delivered on our beautiful and inspiring campus in Lampeter

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The MRes programme in Contemporary literature is divided into a 60 credit taught part and a Dissertation of 120 credits amounting to up to 30,000 words in total. Read more
The MRes programme in Contemporary literature is divided into a 60 credit taught part and a Dissertation of 120 credits amounting to up to 30,000 words in total. It covers a wide range of literary topics from the Romantics to contemporary literary theory and is tailored to allow students to pursue their own particular interests.

Course Overview

This programme draws on specialist staff with expertise in Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Literature, Romanticism, Children’s Literature, and Contemporary Literature and theory. It also makes use of the holdings of the Special Collections of the Roderic Bowen Library: a unique resource which houses the Special Collections of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, including over 35,000 printed works.

Underpinned by instruction in advanced research methods and skills and the comparative study of theoretically informed critical approaches, this MRes, based on the Lampeter Campus of the University, enables students to undertake an advanced level study of literature in English and associated aspects of culture in the period from 1790 to the present day.

Romanticism, post-Romanticism, the Victorian, Decadence, Modernism, Post-modernism – are explored in a range of modules. For example two modules, ‘Visions of Society’ and ‘The Shock of the New’, critically examine the connections and tensions between the ideas and kinds of literary production traditionally associated with those movements: for example, the emergence of the individual, shifts in religious belief, the importance of the city and urbanisation, attitudes to class, race and gender, the dominance of the novel and the impact of new media forms, commodification and the emergence of competing views of the real. Other areas of focus include the consideration of the figure of the child as a shifting ideological construct within and across various C19th cultural movements; writing by American Black Women writers; and the utopian urge in the literature of the period.

Modules

Students will choose three modules. Below is an illustrative list of modules available:
-Research Methods (compulsory)
-Comparative and Critical Approaches
-Visions of Society
-The Shock of the New
-Utopian and Dystopian Fiction
-The Child in Time
-Black American Women Writers

Key Features

The programme is delivered on the University’s campus in Lampeter. They are taught through seminars, small workshops and individual tutorials and supervision that enable detailed and personalised feedback.

Access to a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) enables additional learning, especially work-shopping, to take place outside the sessions and supports the development of a mutually supportive cohort of committed writers. Graduates from the programmes have gone on to become successful and prize winning authors.

Moreover this programme will offer:
-Expert tuition from research active specialist staff
-Exceptional resources in the specialist holdings of the Roderic Bown Library
-Small seminar based classes
-Residential programme based on our beautiful and inpiring campus in Lampeter
-Available as an online and distance learning option

Assessment

Assessment is through a mixture of assignment and presentation supported by tasks designed to enhance research skills. The dissertation allows students to undertake a sustained research project on a topic of their choice under expert individual supervision.

Career Opportunities

-Professional Writers
-Editors
-Publishers
-Marketing
-Expert tuition from professional writers, poets, novelists, dramatists, script-writers
-An opportunity to learn about publishing through the design and production of the annual anthology
-An opportunity to read your work at such events as the Hay Festival
-Programme delivered on our beautiful and inspiring campus in Lampeter

Read less
This Pathway in English Literature considers the relationship between literatures from a variety of historical periods. Register your interest. Read more

This Pathway in English Literature considers the relationship between literatures from a variety of historical periods.

Register your interest

Apply now

The English Literature MA pathway is ideal if you don’t wish to be confined to a specific period or disciplinary area. It asks fundamental questions about our ideas of literature and how these might have changed over time.

The pathway’s compulsory module, ‘The Production of Texts in Contexts’, opens up these questions by looking at a broad array of literature from a variety of historic periods. It considers how innovations in printing and publishing have affected writing, and asks to what extent political and social change conditions and defines authorial identities and practices.

Apart from the compulsory core module briefly described below, students taking the generic English Literature pathway can freely choose their remaining three modules from all the other existing pathways and thus sample different topics from different periods. Below are additional links to those pathways that allow you to see the rich variety of staff research interests and specialisms.

The Production of Texts in Context

The Production of Texts in Context is a trans-historical module that ranges across many different literary periods from the early middle ages to the present day. The module is team-taught so students experience teaching by ten to eleven different staff members, each of whom presents a topic related to their own particular interests and period specialisms. The teaching team and the topics represented vary from year to year according to staff availability, with recent topics including Ballad and Carol (Alfred Hiatt), The Making of Paradise Lost (Joad Raymond), The Eighteenth-Century Newspaper (Chris Reid), Victorian Serialised Fiction (Matt Ingleby), Experimental Writing and Early Twentieth-Century Publishing (Scott McCracken), The Coming of Age Novel in Global Literature (Charlotta Salmi), Book Prizes and Literary Production (Huw Marsh), and Contemporary Graphic Narrative (Sam McBean). For the essay assignment students pick a subject relating to one of the topics and can seek advice from the relevant staff member. There is also a designated member of staff who acts as module convenor, sits in with students on the weekly seminars, and is able to offer general help and guidance.

Compulsory modules:

You also choose one of the following

Researching Modern CultureLondon Panoramas: Research, Culture and the Long Eighteenth Century, or The Material Text, 1300-1700

Option modules:

You choose three modules from a wide-ranging list of options that changes from year to year. 

In 2017-2018 we hope to offer the following. If members of our specialist research staff win research funding it will mean that their module won’t run, so for that reason this list is indicative only. 

Students may also opt to take a cognate elective module offered by the Schools in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and by other Colleges of the University of London. 

In addition to taught modules, we run a range of research seminars to which all MA students are invited. Some of these are linked to our interdisciplinary Research Centres, such as the Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies, the Centre for Religion and Literature in English and the Centre for the History of the Emotions. Others are collaborations with other institutions, such as the London-Paris Romanticism Seminar. With visiting speakers from across the world, these seminars are an opportunity to meet other postgraduate students and members of staff and to learn about the latest developments in research.



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This programme offers students an introduction to the study of the ways in which writing in English has shaped or mediated political identities in England, Scotland and Ireland. Read more

This programme offers students an introduction to the study of the ways in which writing in English has shaped or mediated political identities in England, Scotland and Ireland.

This programme introduces you to the relationship between literary writing and political and social discourse in Britain and Ireland between the ‘Glorious Revolution’ of 1688 and the end of the 19th century. This is the period of the creation of the Britain in which we live today, and also the time in which ancient British, Scottish and Irish national cultures were conceptualised as a response to radical literary, social and political innovations.

In examining the role of literary writing in this period, you will evaluate the ways in which it changed in response to social and political developments. You will also explore how Romantic conceptions of history, society and the aesthetic are developed and questioned during the course of the 19th century.

Programme structure

The programme will be taught through a combination of seminars and tutorials over two semesters, after which you will complete an independently researched dissertation. You will complete two compulsory and two option courses, along with courses in research methods.

Compulsory courses:

  • Enlightenment and Romanticism 1688–1815
  • Romanticism and Victorian Society 1815–1900
  • Research Skills and Methods

Option courses may include:

  • Poet-Critics: the Style of Modern Poetry
  • Fairy Tales
  • Digital Humanities for Literary Studies
  • Green Thoughts: Landscape, Environment and Literature
  • The Long Summer: Edwardian Texts and Contexts 1900–1910
  • Shakespeare Adapted
  • Fairy Tales

Learning outcomes

Students who successfully follow this programme will gain:

  • knowledge and understanding of the role of literary writing in the formation of British, Scottish, Irish and English national identities in the 18th and 19th centuries
  • practical knowledge of the range of theoretical and philosophical ideas informing contemporary literary criticism
  • a grounding in the research methods of literary studies

Career opportunities

This programme will help you to identify possible topics for advanced research in English literature, potentially leading to an academic career. The transferable skills you gain, such as communication, project management and analysis, will give you an edge in a competitive employment market.



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This programme offers students the opportunity to develop their interests in aspects of American literature, from first colonisation to the present, post-9/11 moment. Read more

This programme offers students the opportunity to develop their interests in aspects of American literature, from first colonisation to the present, post-9/11 moment.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of American literature, in topics as diverse as the Black Atlantic, postmodernist fiction, and the poetics of republicanism.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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Critical Theory is an exciting and dynamic field encompassing diverse intellectual approaches to literature, culture, society, and politics. Read more

Critical Theory is an exciting and dynamic field encompassing diverse intellectual approaches to literature, culture, society, and politics. It entails reflection on the premises, concepts and categories used in different disciplines.

This programme provides expert-led teaching on the wide range of theoretical approaches that constitute the contemporary critical vocabulary within the humanities.

Seminar-based teaching will allow you to critically engage with theoretical approaches as diverse as poststructuralism, postcolonialism, and the Frankfurt School, and with the work of thinkers such as Heidegger, Derrida and Deleuze.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of English literature, historical and/or theoretical.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Programme structure

Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of critical theory related to their chosen fields and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

The programme includes a 15,000-word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the programme tutors.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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The prose, poetry and drama of the later medieval period (roughly 1350-1550) in England and Scotland offer a remarkably rich subject for advanced literary study. Read more

The prose, poetry and drama of the later medieval period (roughly 1350-1550) in England and Scotland offer a remarkably rich subject for advanced literary study.

This programme allows you to pursue individual projects in Scottish and/or English literature within a wider interdisciplinary understanding of the period as a whole. Whether your interests lie in major figures such as Chaucer, Langland, The Gawain Poet, Malory, Skelton, Henryson, Dunbar, Douglas or Lyndsay, in less well-known or anonymous writers, the romance tradition, lyric poetry or drama, or in the relationships between literature, society and politics, you will have the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of supervised independent research, supported by a flexible choice of taught options in related areas.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of medieval literature, and have particular strengths in verse and prose romance, religious and secular drama, and lyric poetry.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000-word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of medieval literature and culture related to their chosen fields, each consisting of a weekly two-hour seminar, and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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This programme introduces you to a range of colonial and postcolonial discourse from countries and regions such as Africa, the Americas, Asia, Canada and Oceania. Read more

This programme introduces you to a range of colonial and postcolonial discourse from countries and regions such as Africa, the Americas, Asia, Canada and Oceania. You will explore a range of issues contingent upon colonisation, independence, and the formation of postcolonial diasporic communities.

You will be encouraged to develop a knowledge and understanding of the roles played by various forms of writing in the shaping and representation of postcolonial subjectivity and context, and to contextualise postcolonial writing in terms of its chronological and geographical specificities, deepening your knowledge and understanding of selected themes and topics in a way that will enable you to select and execute an independent piece of research.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of postcolonial literature, and have particular strengths in African American and Chicana writing, black British writing, Canadian literature, Indian subcontinental and diasporic writing, New Zealand literature, and Pacific literature.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000-word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of postcolonial literature and culture related to their chosen fields, each consisting of a weekly two-hour seminar, and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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Modern English Literature begins in the extraordinary developments of the 16th and early 17th centuries. Read more

Modern English Literature begins in the extraordinary developments of the 16th and early 17th centuries. Under the influence of social, religious and political transformations, and through engagement with classical and continental European culture, new theories and practices of literature appeared that have influenced generations of writers since.

Studying the literature of this period allows us both to enter a world that is not our own, and to see the origins of modern western perspectives and predicaments. This programme offer you the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of supervised independent research in this field.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of Renaissance literature, and have particular strengths in Renaissance drama and performance, Renaissance poetry, the politics of literature in the Renaissance, religious writing in the Renaissance, Renaissance biographical and autobiographical writing, and the relevance to the study of Renaissance literature of modern and contemporary theory.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Extensive collections of Renaissance manuscripts and printed books are held in Edinburgh by the University’s own library, the National Library of Scotland, and the National Archives of Scotland. These collections offer excellent research resources and opportunities for graduate study, and are particularly rich in materials relating to Shakespeare and Renaissance drama.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000 word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of Renaissance literature and culture related to their chosen fields and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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The literature of the Victorian era offers an extraordinary range of styles, themes and intellectual ideas. This diverse and dynamic literary field reflects a period which witnessed rapid change in almost every area of existence. Read more

The literature of the Victorian era offers an extraordinary range of styles, themes and intellectual ideas. This diverse and dynamic literary field reflects a period which witnessed rapid change in almost every area of existence.

Writers such as Dickens, Eliot, the Brontë sisters, Stevenson, Tennyson, Browning, and Christina Rossetti used their work to explore new developments in topics that ranged from religion to sexuality, evolution to imperialism, and mass culture to aestheticism. This programme offers you the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of supervised independent research in your chosen area.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of Victorian literature, and have particular strengths in social, historical and philosophical approaches to literature, in gender studies, and in the literary culture of the fin de siecle.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000-word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of Victorian literature and culture related to their chosen fields and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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The MA in English Literary Studies offers several different pathways each specialising in a period or area of study, and enabling students to craft a degree that suits them. Read more

The MA in English Literary Studies offers several different pathways each specialising in a period or area of study, and enabling students to craft a degree that suits them:

  • English Literary Studies which allows study across a range of periods and subjects
  • Early Modern Literature including Shakespeare and the Renaissance
  • Romantic and Victorian Literature
  • Modern and Contemporary Literary Studies including Film and Media
  • Critical-Creative Writing which combines critical approaches to writing with the practice of writing itself, including fiction and poetry
  • Literary and Cultural Studies which is taught with the Department of Sociology and explores contemporary debates in cultural theory

Course Structure

You will study a range of modules as part of your course, some examples of which are listed below.

Core

Optional

Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, but changes may be necessary, for example as a result of student feedback, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' (PSRB) requirements, staff changes, and new research.

Assessment

Combination of coursework, dissertation and research methodology portfolio



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From the poetry of Dunbar and Henryson to the fiction of James Kelman and A.L. Kennedy, Scottish literature presents an extraordinarily rich and varied subject of study, whether considered as a tradition in its own right or in terms of its interaction with English, European or world literatures. Read more

From the poetry of Dunbar and Henryson to the fiction of James Kelman and A.L. Kennedy, Scottish literature presents an extraordinarily rich and varied subject of study, whether considered as a tradition in its own right or in terms of its interaction with English, European or world literatures.

Whether you’re interested in poetry, fiction or drama, the literary dimensions of the Scottish Enlightenment, the relationship between modernism and nationalism, Walter Scott or Irvine Welsh, Muriel Spark or Robert Louis Stevenson, this programme offers you the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of supervised independent research in your chosen area.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of Scottish literature, and have particular strengths in medieval Scottish writing, in comparative approaches to Scottish literature, in Scotland’s transatlantic connections, in the relationship between literature and philosophy in Scotland, in 18th and 19th century writing and culture, and in modern and contemporary Scottish literature.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000 word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of Scottish literature related to their chosen fields and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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We are one of the strongest English departments in the UK with an excellent reputation for high quality research. Our Postgraduate students are an important part of our research community, and if you choose to join us at Exeter then you will be too. Read more

We are one of the strongest English departments in the UK with an excellent reputation for high quality research. Our Postgraduate students are an important part of our research community, and if you choose to join us at Exeter then you will be too.

There are many reasons why you might choose our English Literary Studies MA. If you are thinking about taking your study of English to the next level in preparation for a PhD then our Department has the knowledge to give you the high level training you need to set you on that path. If you are a recent graduate looking to stand out in the job market, already working but want to develop further, or simply looking to take your passion for English to the next level then we have the strength and depth of specialisms to fit your interests.

Our Library and Special Collections offer modern study facilities and a vast amount of original source material, and if you’re interested in film or visual culture then the on-site Bill Douglas Cinema Museum is an invaluable resource.

You can choose to study one of the specialist pathways we have chosen to match the Department’s strengths or you can take an open pathway and tailor your own programme from our wide range of modules.

Specialist pathways include:

Modules

Each Pathway has compulsory and optional modules some of these are listed here;

  • The Cultures of American Modernism;
  • Beyond the Border: The Politics of Place in Contemporary North American Literature and Culture;
  • Criticism and Theory: Critical and Literary Theory in a Global Context;
  • Revival and Return: Using the Past from Pope to Keats;
  • Body and Identity; Sense, Sensation, and Cinema;
  • Hearing Film: Film Sound and Music;
  • Country City and Court Renaissance Literature 1558-1618;
  • Bodies Politic: Cultural and Sexual Politics in England, 1603-85;
  • From Orientalism to Globalization: Debates in Postcolonial Studies;
  • Beyond the Border: The Politics of Place in Contemporary North American Literature and Culture;
  • Making Progress? Literature in a Changing Environment 1830-1870
  • Empire, Decadence and Modernity: Literature 1870-1910.

Constituent modules and pathways may be updated, deleted or replaced in future years as a consequence of programme development. Details at any time may be obtained from the Department website at http://humanities.exeter.ac.uk/english/postgraduate/ .

Careers

In recent years the positions some of our graduates have gone on to include: Copywriter; Marketing Assistant; Assistant Editor; Publishing Assistant; Editorial Assistant; Freelance Journalist and Writer



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