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History & Archaeology×

Masters Degrees in African History

We have 38 Masters Degrees in African History

Masters degrees in African History explore the peoples, civilisations and cultures of the African continent from ancient times through to the Modern period. These courses often encompass key topics and periods such as pre-colonial and colonial developments, followed by the rise of independence movements and the growth of separate African nations.

Related subjects include African Literature as well as branches of Ancient History and World History. Specialist postgraduate topics include Imperial History and Post-Colonial Studies.

Why study a Masters in African History?

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The MA in Imperial History will be administered by the School of History and convened by Dr. Giacomo Macola, Senior Lecturer in African History. Read more
The MA in Imperial History will be administered by the School of History and convened by Dr. Giacomo Macola, Senior Lecturer in African History.

This programme allows you to examine key themes and regions in the making of world history, from the 18th century to the present day.

Imperial history is a rapidly growing and innovative field of historical research, which offers you the opportunity to explore the origins, workings and legacies of empires. By critically engaging with a range of theoretical and empirical literatures, as well as conducting original research, you use historical data to tackle momentous questions relating to violence, development and global inequality.

Led by five specialists in the School of History, the programme takes a broad interdisciplinary approach which also encompasses renowned academics from other departments. The team offers particular expertise in African political history, the history of military technology and conflict, global histories of religion and the newly-emerging field of children and childhoods. You also have the opportunity to participate in the activities of the Centre for the History of Colonialisms (http://www.kent.ac.uk/history/centres/colonialisms/index.html).

This programme offers an ideal launching pad for students who envisage careers with an international dimension or plan to embark on doctoral work.

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/360/imperial-history

The School of History at the University of Kent offers a great environment in which to research and study. Situated in a beautiful cathedral city with its own dynamic history, the University is within easy reach of the main London archives and is convenient for travelling to mainland Europe.

The School of History is a lively, research-led department where postgraduate students are given the opportunity to work alongside academics recognised as experts in their respective fields. The School was placed eighth nationally for research intensity in the Research Excellence Framework 2014, and consistently scores highly in the National Student Survey.

There is a good community spirit within the School, which includes regular postgraduate social meetings, weekly seminars and a comprehensive training programme with the full involvement of the School’s academic staff. Thanks to the wide range of teaching and research interests in the School, we can offer equally wide scope for research supervision covering British, European, African and American history.

At present, there are particularly strong groupings of research students in imperial and African history, medieval and early modern cultural and social history, early modern religious history, the history and cultural studies of science and medicine, the history of propaganda, military history, war and the media, and the history of Kent.

Course structure

The MA in Imperial History is available for one year full-time, or two years part-time study

Students take four modules: two compulsory and two additional specialist modules (to be chosen from a menu of at least five variable yearly options). 60 further credits are earned through a final 15,000-word-long dissertation.

Modules

Compulsory modules

- Methods and Interpretations in Historical Research
- Themes and Controversies Modern Imperial History
- Dissertation of 15,000 words

Optional modules

- Liberation Struggles in Southern Africa
- War in the Hispanic World since 1808
- Colonial Childhoods
- An Intimate History of the British Empire
- Europe in Crisis, 1900-1925
- No End of a Lesson: Britain and the Boer War
- Writing of Empire and Settlement
- Colonial and Postcolonial Discourses

Assessment

This is by coursework and a 15,000-word dissertation, which counts for one-third of the final grade.

Study support

Postgraduate resources
The resources for historical research at Kent are led by the University’s Templeman Library: a designated European Documentation Centre which holds specialised collections on slavery and antislavery, and on medical science. The Library has a substantial collection of secondary materials to back-up an excellent collection of primary sources including the British Cartoon Archive, newspapers, a large audio-visual library, and a complete set of British Second World War Ministry of Information propaganda pamphlets.

The School has a dedicated Centre for the Study of Propaganda and War, which has a distinctive archive of written, audio and visual propaganda materials, particularly in film, video and DVD. Locally, you have access to: the Canterbury Cathedral Library and Archive (a major collection for the study of medieval and early modern religious and social history); the Centre for Kentish Studies at Maidstone; and the National Maritime Collection at Greenwich. Kent is also within easy reach of the country’s premier research collections in London and the national libraries in Paris and Brussels.

Dynamic publishing culture
Staff publish regularly and widely in journals, conference proceedings and books. Among others, they have recently contributed to: Journal of Contemporary History; English Historical Review; British Journal for the History of Science; Technology and Culture; and War and Society.

Global Skills Award
All students registered for a taught Master's programme are eligible to apply for a place on our Global Skills Award Programme (http://www.kent.ac.uk/graduateschool/skills/programmes/gsa.html). The programme is designed to broaden your understanding of global issues and current affairs as well as to develop personal skills which will enhance your employability.

Research areas

Medieval and early modern history
Covering c400–c1500, incorporating such themes as Anglo-Saxon England, early-modern France, palaeography, British and European politics and society, religion and papacy.

Modern history
Covering c1500–present, incorporating such themes as modern British, European and American history, British military history, and 20th-century conflict and propaganda.

History of science, technology and medicine
Incorporating such themes as colonial science and medicine, Nazi medicine, eugenics, science and technology in 19th-century Britain.

Careers

As the job market becomes increasingly competitive, postgraduate qualifications are becoming more attractive to employers seeking individuals who have finely tuned skills and abilities, which our programmes encourage you to hone. As a result of the valuable transferable skills developed during your course of study, career prospects for history graduates are wide ranging. Our graduates go on to a variety of careers, from research within the government to teaching, politics to records management and journalism, to working within museums and galleries – to name but a few.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

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Research programmes are best suited to students who have a clear idea of a topic they would like to investigate in detail. The MA by Research entails producing a 30,000-word thesis. Read more
Research programmes are best suited to students who have a clear idea of a topic they would like to investigate in detail.

The MA by Research entails producing a 30,000-word thesis.

We welcome research applications across the range of expertise within the School. We run regular seminars in medieval and Tudor studies, modern history, the history and cultural studies of science, and the study of propaganda.

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/89/history

About the School of History

The School of History at the University of Kent offers a great environment in which to research and study. Situated in a beautiful cathedral city with its own dynamic history, the University is within easy reach of the main London archives and is convenient for travelling to mainland Europe.

The School of History is a lively, research-led department where postgraduate students are given the opportunity to work alongside academics recognised as experts in their respective fields. The School was placed eighth nationally for research intensity in the most recent Research Excellence Framework, and consistently scores highly in the National Student Survey.

There is a good community spirit within the School, which includes regular postgraduate social meetings, weekly seminars and a comprehensive training programme with the full involvement of the School’s academic staff. Thanks to the wide range of teaching and research interests in the School, we can offer equally wide scope for research supervision covering British, European, African and American history.

At present, there are particularly strong groupings of research students in medieval and early modern cultural and social history, early modern religious history, the history and cultural studies of science and medicine, the medicine, the history of propaganda, military history, war and the media, and the history of Kent.

Course structure

All first-year research students attend a Methodologies and Research Skills seminar, which is split between components run by the School and others provided by the Faculty of Humanities. This training improves your knowledge of both historical theory and methods of using primary material, and can assist in funding applications.

Study support

Postgraduate resources
The resources for historical research at Kent are led by the University’s Templeman Library: a designated European Documentation Centre which holds specialised collections on slavery and antislavery, and on medical science. The Library has a substantial collection of secondary materials to back-up an excellent collection of primary sources including the British Cartoon Archive, newspapers, a large audio-visual library, and a complete set of British Second World War Ministry of Information propaganda pamphlets.

The School has a dedicated Centre for the Study of Propaganda and War, which has a distinctive archive of written, audio and visual propaganda materials, particularly in film, video and DVD. Locally, you have access to: the Canterbury Cathedral Library and Archive (a major collection for the study of medieval and early modern religious and social history); the Centre for Kentish Studies at Maidstone; and the National Maritime Collection at Greenwich. Kent is also within easy reach of the country’s premier research collections in London and the national libraries in Paris and Brussels.

Dynamic publishing culture
Staff publish regularly and widely in journals, conference proceedings and books. Among others, they have recently contributed to: Journal of Contemporary History; English Historical Review; British Journal for the History of Science; Technology and Culture; and War and Society.

Researcher Development Programme
Kent's Graduate School co-ordinates the Researcher Development Programme (http://www.kent.ac.uk/graduateschool/skills/programmes/tstindex.html) for research students, which includes workshops focused on research, specialist and transferable skills. The programme is mapped to the national Researcher Development Framework and covers a diverse range of topics, including subjectspecific research skills, research management, personal effectiveness, communication skills, networking and teamworking, and career management skills

Research areas

Medieval and early modern history
Covering c400–c1500, incorporating such themes as Anglo-Saxon England, early-modern France, palaeography, British and European politics and society, religion and papacy.

Modern history
Covering c1500–present, incorporating such themes as modern British, European and American history, British military history, and 20th-century conflict and propaganda.

History of science, technology and medicine
Incorporating such themes as colonial science and medicine, Nazi medicine, eugenics, science and technology in 19th-century Britain.

Careers

As the job market becomes increasingly competitive, postgraduate qualifications are becoming more attractive to employers seeking individuals who have finely tuned skills and abilities, which our programmes encourage you to hone. As a result of the valuable transferable skills developed during your course of study, career prospects for history graduates are wide ranging. Our graduates go on to a variety of careers, from research within the government to teaching, politics to records management and journalism, to working within museums and galleries – to name but a few.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

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World History at the University of Cambridge combines the study of global and imperial history with the study of Asian, African and Latin American histories. Read more
World History at the University of Cambridge combines the study of global and imperial history with the study of Asian, African and Latin American histories. It draws upon the expertise of faculty members in each of these areas, as well as in Middle Eastern, Oceanic and American history. The MPhil in World History enables students to develop strong expertise in this rich and expanding field of historical scholarship. The MPhil in World History combines courses and a dissertation over a 9-month program. The core course focuses on historiographical debates in world history, leading to two options, usually in the history of a world region. From first term, students also begin directed research for a 15–20,000 word dissertation, working closely with a supervisor from the Cambridge World History Group. Students will also take language classes, a component that is required but not examined. This may be in any language offered in the Cambridge University Language Program, and may be elementary, continuing or advanced. In this way, the Cambridge MPhil in World History offers students thorough preparation for an advanced research degree. Cambridge graduates in World History have taken up posts in universities and academic-related spheres of work around the world. The MPhil in World History provides a point of entry into this rich tradition.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/hihimpwhs

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the programme, students will have:

- knowledge of key debates and trends in world history and historiography
- skills in presenting work in both oral and written form
- acquired the ability to situate their own research findings within the context of previous and current interpretative scholarly debates in the field

Format

The MPhil in World History course has five elements, combining taught classes, a research project, language acquisition and participation in research seminar:

1. The core course, Debates in World History (10%) This course is historiographically based, engaging students with key scholarship, classic texts, and their revisions. Several origins and traditions of world history, global history, transnational history, and regional history will be established and questioned in student-led seminar discussion.

2. Two elective courses, selected from a suite of options (20%). Options will vary from year to year, but will include courses such as “Global Thinkers”, “Global China”, “Inequality: a Global History”.

3. A dissertation (15-20,000 words) (70%).

4. A language (non-examined). This may be preliminary, intermediate or advanced, in any language.

5. Participation in the Cambridge World History Seminar.

Students will receive both formal and informal feedback in all three modules, as well as from their thesis supervisor throughout the period of teaching.

Students will receive feedback via the following routes:

- Supervision: regular oral feedback in addition to termly online feedback reports (CGSRS)
- Core course and Option essays: written feedback
- Graduate Workshop / Seminars: oral feedback
- Language classes (if taken): oral and possible written feedback from teachers
- Dissertation examination: formal written feedback from two examiners after submission and examination of dissertation

Assessment

15,000–20,000 words. The dissertation will be examined by an internal and an external examiner. The dissertation is worth 70% of the final mark. An oral examination will only be required in cases where one of the marks is a marginal fail.

Core: 3-4,000 word Essay (10% of final mark)
Options: 2 x 3-4,000 word Essay (20% of final mark)

NB: Language Component is compulsory but is not examined.

Students will also prepare a 2,000 word dissertation proposal essay due in the Lent Term. This essay will be unassessed but students will meet with their supervisor to discuss the essay and receive feedback.

Continuing

In order to be considered for continuation to the PhD, and always subject to satisfactory supervision arrangements being in place, students are expected to obtain an overall mark of 70 for the MPhil and a mark of at least 70 for their dissertation.

Please see the Faculty website for more information:

http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/prospective-graduates/apply/apply-mphil-phd
http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/prospective-graduates/apply/apply-ltc-home

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

Please see the History Faculty’s Funding Guide via the History Faculty’s weblink below:

http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/prospective-graduates/faculty-funding/funding-options

General Funding Opportunities http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/funding

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Durham's MA in Social and Economic History at Durham provides training in research methods for historical topics in any aspect of social and economic history. Read more

Durham's MA in Social and Economic History at Durham provides training in research methods for historical topics in any aspect of social and economic history. The MA provides quantitative and qualitative research methods appropriate to a wide range of historical approaches. Accredited by the ESRC, this MA is part of our four year funding scheme offered by the North-East Doctoral Training Centre. You can apply for 1+3 funding for this MA followed by a PhD in any aspect of social and economic history with expert supervision available within the Department – and with our partner institution in the NEDTC at Newcastle University. This includes African history, and aspects of governance, as well as traditional social and economic topics. For further information on funding see further below.

The MA programme is shared with the School of Applied Social Science and will help you to build an awareness of the contemporary boundaries of social and economic history and to master advanced understanding of the concepts and methods with which it may be interrogated. It seeks to equip you with a diverse portfolio of research techniques and approaches to enable you to undertake extended independent research in your dissertation, and to make your own contribution to the field. The skills provided by this MA are also transferrable to a wide range of careers.

Durham has a long tradition of economic and social history, on which this MA draws. The breadth of possible subjects for study mirrors the comprehensive and global nature of the department staff: from medieval Europe to modern-day Africa, and from north-east England to the global economy. Durham's History Department is situated in the historic setting of the World Heritage Site, which includes Durham Cathedral and Durham Castle. Students of social and economic history at Durham benefit from the rich archival and manuscript resources in the collections of the University (at Palace Green Library - especially the Sudan Archive - and Ushaw College) and in the Cathedral Library, while the wider regional resources for study of the period are also highly significant: the landscape of industrial revolution and of post-industrial response, of globalisation and regional identity.

Course Structure

The MA in Social and Economic History is a one-year full-time programme (or two-years part-time). All students are allocated a supervisor at the beginning of the first term, and s/he guides each student through the year.

You will take 30 credits of core modules from History: Themes, Reading and Sources (30 credits); and 30 credits of core modules from the School of Applied Social Sciences: Perspectives on Social Research (15 credits) AND EITHER Qualitative Research Methods in Social Science (15 credits) OR Fieldwork and Interpretation (15 credits). You will write a 60-credit dissertation (15,000 words) supervised by a member of academic staff in the History Department. You will also choose a 30-credit optional module in History; AND 30 credits of optional modules from Social Sciences: EITHER Statistical Exploration and Reasoning (15 credits) and Quantitative Research Methods in Social Science (15 credits) OR Applied Statistics (30 credits).

The programme is structured as follows:

Michaelmas Term (October-December)

  • Themes, Reading and Sources (30 credits)
  • Perspectives on Social Research (15 credits)
  • Statistical Exploration and Reasoning (15 credits; OPTIONAL)
  • Fieldwork and Interpretation (15 credits; OPTIONAL)
  • Applied Statistics (30 credits; OPTIONAL; runs across Michaelmas and Epiphany Terms)

Epiphany Term (January-March)

  • Themes, Reading and Sources (30 credits) continued on from Themes, Reading and Sources module taken in Michaelmas Term.
  • Option module (30 credits)
  • Qualitative Research Methods (15 credits; OPTIONAL)
  • Quantitative Research Methods (15 credits; OPTIONAL)

Easter Term (April-June), and the summer vacation (until early September)

  • Dissertation (60 credits)

Course Learning and Teaching

The programme is delivered primarily through small group seminar teaching with some larger classes, and lecture-style sessions. Termly division of contact hours between terms depends on student choice. Skills modules are taught through seminars or classes and are usually more contact-hour-intensive. Optional modules are taught in seminars and provide a total of 20 contact hours. Dissertation supervision involves 8 hours of directed supervision, individually with a dedicated supervisor. Social science modules are taught through lectures, seminars, workshops, and practical classes.



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This programme will allow you to take a broad approach to African, Indian, American, British and European history from the early modern period to the 21st century. Read more

This programme will allow you to take a broad approach to African, Indian, American, British and European history from the early modern period to the 21st century.

A core module will allow you to sharpen your research skills, and you’ll choose from a wide range of optional modules spanning nations, continents, periods and themes to explore topics that interest you. You could study black internationalism alongside early modern Europe, the Spanish state, Stalinism, political violence in India or apartheid.

You’ll be taught by leading researchers as part of a large and diverse School of History and Leeds Humanities Research Institute, supported by active research groups and extensive library resources. Our research interests range from social history and identity to political history, nationalism and internationalism, meaning this flexible programme offers plenty of opportunities to gain important skills while focusing on issues that suit your interests.

You’ll study in a supportive environment with a wide range of resources. The world-class Brotherton Library has one of the best history collections in the UK, ranging from monographs and journals to conference papers, theses and over 100 digital databases of primary sources and other materials for fundamental research. The Brotherton also has its own special collections including the Leeds Russian Archive and the Feminist Archive North.

The Alf Mattinson Collection is full of printed works and papers related to the history of the Labour Party, and the Romany collection and Liddle Collection offer insights into Romany culture and the First World War respectively.

This programme is also available to study part-time over 24 months.

Course content

You’ll study one core module in your first semester, introducing you to different research methodologies in history and allowing you to develop your skills. You’ll also select from a wide range of optional modules throughout the year, allowing you to pursue topics that interest you such as the history of Yorkshire, the European Enlightenment or issues surrounding global security.

You’ll also have the opportunity to work collaboratively with partner organisations, such as the West Yorkshire Archive Service, by studying the ‘Making History: Archive Collaborations’ module.

This programme will equip you with in-depth subject knowledge, as well as high-level skills in research, interpretation and analysis. You’ll be able to demonstrate these when you complete your dissertation on a modern history topic of your choice, which you’ll submit by the end of the programme.

If you choose to study part-time, you’ll study over a longer period and take fewer modules in each year.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Compulsory modules

  • Research Methodology in History 30 credits
  • Dissertation (History) 60 credits

Optional modules

  • Making History: Archive Collaborations 30 credits
  • Secrecy and Espionage in Early Modern Europe 30 credits
  • Reformation(s): Belief and Culture in Early Modern Europe 30 credits
  • Approaches to Contemporary European History 30 credits
  • 'The continuation of war by other means? : Case Studies in Wartime Diplomacy 1931-1945 30 credits
  • Medicine and Warfare in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries 30 credits
  • Women, Gender and Sexuality: Archives and Approaches 30 credits
  • Defending the Nation: Britain during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, 1793 to 1815 30 credits
  • Stalinist Terror 30 credits
  • Black Internationalism 30 credits
  • India since 1947: Community, Caste and Political Violence 30 credits
  • Sexuality and Disease in African History 30 credits
  • Contesting Patriarchy: Debating Gender Justice in Colonial and Post-Colonial India.30 credits
  • The War on Terror 30 credits
  • Latin America and the Caribbean from Rebellion to Revolution, 1765-1845 30 credits
  • Guns and Global Security 30 credits
  • Britain and the Slave Trade 30 credits
  • Insurgency and Counterinsurgency 30 credits
  • The Fragility of the Spanish State: Identity, Conflict and Resistance, 1808-1939 30 credits
  • Anti-Apartheid: Cultures of the Struggle 30 credits
  • Race and Second Wave Feminism in the US30 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Modern History MA Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read Modern History MA Part Time in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

We use a range of teaching and learning methods. The majority of your modules will be taught through weekly seminars, where you’ll discuss issues and themes in your chosen modules with a small group of students and your tutors. Independent study is also crucial to this degree, giving you the space to shape your own studies and develop your skills.

Assessment

We use different types of assessment to help you develop a wide range of skills, including presentations, research proposals, case studies and essays, depending on the subjects you choose.

Career opportunities

This programme will heighten your cultural and social awareness as well as allowing you to build your historical knowledge. You’ll also gain high-level research, analysis and communication skills that will prove valuable in a wide range of careers.

Graduates have found success in a wide range of careers in education, research and the private sector. Many others have continued with their studies at PhD level.

We offer different forms of support to help you reach your career goals. You’ll have the chance to attend our career groups, meeting students with similar plans, or you could become a paid academic mentor to an undergraduate completing their final-year dissertation. You could also apply for one of the internships we offer each year.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.



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The programme would suit students with a keen interest in learning about the historical conditions of the contemporary world, and in particular those who are prepared to look at the world from the perspective of other people and cultures. Read more

Who is this programme for?:

The programme would suit students with a keen interest in learning about the historical conditions of the contemporary world, and in particular those who are prepared to look at the world from the perspective of other people and cultures. While the course is open to students from a broad range of backgrounds, the ideal applicant would have an UG degree in History (or a related discipline), some knowledge of foreign, including Asian or African languages, and preferably some relevant background in the region of specialism.

Graduates will find a wide range of career options open to them, in particular those involving inter-cultural or international contact, such as in international organizations, government institutions, non-profit organizations, and journalism, but also museums, educational institutions, or the publishing sector more generally. It would also be a suitable preparation for students considering embarking on a research degree focusing on one of the regional or topical areas of expertise represented in the department.

The two-year intensive language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with Asia, Africa and the Near and Middle East in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language course would enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.

This is the only Master-level programme in History focusing on the study of Asia, the Middle East and Africa in the UK, and can therefore offer an unrivalled breadth of courses on the history of these regions. The programme provides a sound training in the historical sciences.

It can also be taken with an intensive language pathway over two years, therefore making this programme unique in Europe.

Email:

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/history/programmes/ma-history-and-intensive-language/

Structure

The programme includes the following elements totalling four units: Courses totalling at least two units from List A [History courses], including a half or full unit designated as the Major course; further minor courses totalling one unit from Lists A [Major and minor history courses], B [Courses from other departments], C [Language courses] or D [Intercollegiate courses]; and a dissertation of 10,000 words written in conjunction with the Major course (one unit).

There are five regional pathways within the MA History: Africa, East Asia, Near and Middle East, South Asia and South East Asia. To meet the pathway requirement, students must choose courses from the relevant regional section in List A to the minimum value of 1.5 units, including their Major.

In the two-year intensive language pathway, students take 2 intensive language units and one discipline unit in their first year. During the summer, they will participate in a summer school abroad. Upon their return, they will take one intensive language unit in their second year and two discipline units. They would also be expected to choose a Major in which to write the dissertation. In the intensive-language pathway, the same rules apply as for the usual MA.

Please see the webpage for the Japanese pathway of the programme, and contact the MA convenor of that pathway for further information on the language component. Further information on entry level language requirements can be found on the programme page.

The Korean pathway is designed for beginner learners of Korean. Students with prior knowledge of Korean are advised to contact the programme convenor, Dr Anders Karlsson (). Students will take four course units in the Korean language, one of them at a Korean university during the summer after year 1.

The Arabic pathway is designed for beginner learners of Arabic. Students will take four units of Arabic, one of them at the Qasid Institute in Jordan or another partner institution during the summer after year 1. Programme convenor: Dr Mustafa Shah ()

MA History and Intensive Language Programme Specification (pdf; 362kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/history/programmes/ma-history-and-intensive-language/file93560.pdf

Aims and Outcomes

- An advanced understanding of the historical sciences and its various methodologies and approaches in general, and specialist knowledge of Asian and African history in particula

- Practical research and writing skills, developed through the study of primary and secondary sources related to Asian and African history

- The critical, conceptual, and analytical skills required for historical research as well as for positions of responsibility in all other professions

- In the two-year pathway, the student will also be provided with a near proficient ability in a language.

Knowledge:
1. Factual knowledge about the histories of Asian and African societies, the ways they interacted with each other and other world regions of the world, and the major historical forces that shaped our contemporary world.

2. Familiarity with a variety of different approaches to historical research and current scholarly debates, and, on that basis, the ability to formulate a valuable research question.

3. How to locate materials and use research resources (particularly research library catalogues, archival hand lists, and digital resources), assess data and evidence critically from manuscripts, printed, and digital sources, and solve problems of conflicting sources and conflicting interpretations.

4. Language skills appropriate to chosen region and field of study (recommended).

Intellectual (thinking) skills:
1. Students should be able to synthesize different kinds of information, become precise and cautious in their assessment of evidence and understand what the different types of historical sources can and cannot tell us.

2. Students should question interpretations, however authoritative, maintain an open-minded attitude to interpretations that challenge older interpretations, and analyse and reassess evidence and research questions for themselves.

3. Students should be able to think critically about the nature of the historical discipline, its methodology, historiography, and openness for interdisciplinary approaches.

4. Students should be able to reflect about the potential of historical research on non-Western societies and civilizations for the advancement of the historical discipline and human civilization in general.

Subject-based practical skills:
1. Effective writing and referencing skills, attention to detail and accuracy in presentation.

2. Effective oral presentation of seminar papers, articulation of ideas, and constructive participation in seminar discussions.

3. Ability to retrieve, sift and select information from a variety of sources, including relevant professional databases, effective note-taking, record keeping and planning of projects.

4. Ability to formulate research questions and design an independent research project, including the use of primary sources.

5. In the two year intensive language pathway, to acquire/develop skills in a language to Effective Operational Proficiency level, i.e., being able to communicate in written and spoken medium in a contemporary language

Transferable skills:
1. Critical thinking.

2. Ability to communicate effectively in oral and written forms.

3. Information gathering skills from conventional and electronic sources.

4. Effective time-management, writing to word limits, and meeting deadlines.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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The programme is designed for students with a keen interest in studying the remote as well as the more recent past of the countries, peoples, and cultures of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Read more
The programme is designed for students with a keen interest in studying the remote as well as the more recent past of the countries, peoples, and cultures of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. It is also ideal for students who seek to understand the historical conditions of the contemporary world from a global perspective.

In addition to their studies on the MA programme, students at SOAS have the opportunity to participate in the Regional History Seminars, as well as in a wide range of research seminars, lectures and conferences, which regularly take place in different departments and centres across the School and at other colleges of the University of London.

Key benefits

• You will have access to a wealth of study resources including the SOAS Library, one of the world's most important academic libraries, attracting scholars from across the globe. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.

• The proximity to the School of many archive depositories and records offices, including its own archival collection as well as the British Library, greatly enhances the potential for dissertation work.

Course detail

While the course is open to students with backgrounds in a diverse range of disciplines in the Humanities and Social Sciences, the ideal applicant would have an UG degree in History or a relevant area studies programme, some knowledge of foreign, in particular Asian or African languages, and preferably relevant background in the region of specialism.

You will develop a sound training in the historical sciences, gain specialised historical knowledge and regional expertise, and will acquire valuable critical thinking, research, and writing skills that will enable you to make a difference in your choice of career.

Those who wish to further develop their linguistic skills may choose from a range of African and Asian language courses.

Experts at where the world is changing

Studying history at SOAS University of London enhances your learning experience by giving you a global perspective of the historical conditions of the contemporary world. You will benefit from working closely with world-renowned historians whose research is building a new way of looking at the world as a whole.

The broader MA History is ideal if you want to study a variety of regions. Alternatively, there is an opportunity to specialise in a single region by selecting one of these pathways:

• MA History: Africa
• MA History: Near and Middle East
• MA History: South Asia
• MA History: South East Asia
• MA History: East Asia

Expert at where the world is changing

Our historians are world-leading specialists with unparalleled expertise on the dynamic histories of Africa, Asia and the Middle East – from the era of the Crusades to the more recent past, nineteenth- and twentieth-century China and Japan, the formation of state and society in Africa, to Islam from West Africa to Southeast Asia.

History at SOAS

We lead the world in research and teaching about the histories of Asia and Africa, being the only history department that examines history from the perspective of these continents, rather than through a western-centric framework.

Format and assessment

The programme consists of four units in total: three units of taught courses and a 10,000 word dissertation worth one unit.

One of the taught courses will be recognised as the student’s Major course and normally the dissertation will be on a topic linked to that course.

Apart from the History courses, approved courses from other departments, language courses, and in some cases intercollegiate courses are available as additional options

Teaching is generally by informal lectures and seminar discussions. At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work where students may be expected to make full-scale presentations for units they take.

Careers

A postgraduate degree from the History department at SOAS provides its students with an understanding of the world, giving them specialised historical knowledge and understanding of cultural sensibilities of a region. Postgraduate students are equipped with the expertise to continue in research as well as the skills needed to enable them to find professional careers in the private and public sectors.

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including familiarity with methods of research; the competence to manage large quantities of information; the ability to select and organise information and analytical skills. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website (http://www.soas.ac.uk/careers/graduate-destinations/).

Postgraduate Open Evenings

You’ll be able to have one-to-one discussions with academics and current students. You can also attend specialist subject talks and take a tour of our campus.

Book now: http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/openevenings/

Webinars

Our webinars give you an opportunity to hear and ask questions about the subject you’re interested in studying. We also cover topics such as making an application, Tier 4 Visa entry, fees and funding, scholarships, accommodation options as well as career related information.

Book now: https://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/webinars/

How to apply

Find out how to apply here: http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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Course content. The MRes is available to both full-time and part-time students from January 2018. Full-Time Students will enrol on . Read more

Course content

The MRes is available to both full-time and part-time students from January 2018.

Full-Time Students will enrol on Introduction to the History of Africa and the African Diaspora (30 credits) and the Research Proposal and Literature Review module (30 credits). These will prepare them for their research project. They will then be allocated a research supervisor to work for the remaining credits by supervised independent research and the writing of their dissertation (120 credits). Full time students must complete 180 credits over one academic year.

Part-Time students will enrol in year 1 on Introduction to the History of Africa and the African Diaspora (30 credits) in semester 1 and the Research Proposal and Literature Review module (30 credits) in semester 2. These modules will prepare them for their research project in year 2. They will then be allocated a research supervisor to work for the remaining credits by supervised independent research and the writing of their dissertation (120 credits). Part time students must complete 180 credits over two academic years.

In all cases, students must complete 60 level 7 credits before working on your dissertation. Under university regulations there are no exit points for the MRes so neither postgraduate certificates nor diplomas are awarded for students who obtain less than 180 credits.

Our facilities

One-to-one research supervision and tutoring from expert and dedicated teaching staff

Access to online books and journals via Dawsonera, Ebrary, JSTOR etc.

Use of SCONUL Access facilities which allows university library users to borrow or use books and journals at other libraries which belong to the scheme. 

Access to Moodle our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). Moodle pages will provide:

  • Programme information
  • Files to download, such as handouts and PowerPoint slides
  • Links to other websites
  • Multimedia, for example, videos, audio or recordings of lectures
  • Activities for you to participate in, such as discussion forums
  • Access to email, online storage and software such as Office 365

Access to all student support and information services via one-stop Support and Information Zone.

Access to online digital and academic skills and training from our Skills Team.

Where this can take you

We place considerable emphasis on the development of primary research skills and the enhancement of analytical and written skills. These are essential if you wish to embark on a PhD research degree. 

The knowledge and skills you gain by completing our MRes will stand you in good stead if you wish to pursue a career within the heritage, education, media or culture sectors. 

You may wish to complete our MRes if you are looking for an intellectual challenge, have always wanted to carry out your own research in this area of history, or wish to combine study with your existing occupation.

Indicative modules

  • Africa and the African Diaspora in the Modern World
  • Research Proposal and Literature Review
  • Research Dissertation


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Course Details. The MA History programme at Queen’s is designed around students’ research interests and provides the opportunity to choose courses relating to a variety of historical periods and locations. Read more

Course Details

The MA History programme at Queen’s is designed around students’ research interests and provides the opportunity to choose courses relating to a variety of historical periods and locations. There are six strands (African and Asian; American; British; Irish; Ancient, Medieval and Early Modern and Religion, Identity and Conflict). Within each strand, students can opt to specialise in particular areas such as gender history, religious history, social history, political history or economic history. Or, they can create a more varied personal programme of study. The School has a host of world leading experts in all periods of time from Ancient to Contemporary History.

These strands share some common elements in research methods and historiography, but allow specialisation through separate taught modules and dissertation supervision. Applicants are requested to indicate which strand they intend to follow on the 'additional information' section of the application form. Students will take a number of compulsory and optional modules.

There are six main components within each strand:

  • a research methods in the humanities module
  • a historiography module
  • a choice between an individually negotiated topic module and auditing a level 3 module (with separate MA coursework)
  • a choice between a primary source-based module or a public history internship
  • a series of strand-specific taught mini-modules
  • a research methods in history module

plus a double-weighted dissertation module of up to 20,000 words.

Assessment and Feedback

Assessment is by coursework: essays, critical commentaries on primary sources; power point presentations; practical work on documents or internship-related assessment; and a 20,000-word dissertation.

Learning and Teaching

Afternoon Only.

Career Prospects

The MA can be regarded either as an end in itself, culminating in the distinction of having obtained a postgraduate degree and enhanced your employability skills as a researcher, or as a stepping stone to the higher research degree of PhD. Many graduates have gone on to PhD programmes both at Queen’s and other world-leading Universities. Others go into a wide variety of employment including careers in museums, archives or libraries; journalism or media related work; teaching; private and public administration; economic development and the voluntary sector.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

How to apply

Applicants for Postgraduate programmes are strongly advised to carefully read the important information and follow the steps set out here before submitting their application via the Postgraduate Direct Applications Portal.



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This programme is a unique opportunity to study the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Students concentrate on architecture, sculpture, painting and the decorative arts and have the option of pursuing topics and approaches more archaeological in focus. Read more
This programme is a unique opportunity to study the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Students concentrate on architecture, sculpture, painting and the decorative arts and have the option of pursuing topics and approaches more archaeological in focus. They consider theoretical and methodological questions and are invited to question the relevance of the disciplinary distinction between History of Art and Archaeology to the study of the non-Western world. Courses cover a time period spanning from antiquity to present-day, contemporary art.

The Department of the History of Art and Archaeology contains some of the world’s leading experts in Asian and African art history and archaeology, whose ground-breaking research informs and is informed by their teaching. Students benefit from the unparalleled knowledge and enthusiasm of staff. As members of the School of Arts, they profit from the insights of scholars and students studying the Music, Film and Media of Asia, Africa and the Middle East in historical and contemporary contexts. They can also select from courses in other departments, taking advantage of SOAS’s unrivalled expertise in the languages, history, religions and cultures of Asia and Africa.

A Masters from the Department of the History of Art and Archaeology provides students with expertise in the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Our postgraduates progress to work in arts, culture and heritage roles, including in galleries, museums, archives, conservation, publishing and arts administration. The large portfolio of transferable skills they acquire enables them to forge careers in a range of other fields across the world. Our Masters programmes are also an excellent foundation for MPhil/PhD research.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/art/programmes/mahistartarch/

Structure

Students must complete three units (or 0.5 unit equivalent) of taught MA modules in addition to the compulsory dissertation. A minimum of two units (or equivalent) must be selected from the MA modules in the History of Art and Archaeology department listed below. Up to one unit (or equivalent) may be selected from MA options offered by other SOAS departments, also listed below. Students must complete the Dissertation in Art and Archaeology (15PARC999).

Students may be allowed to study for the MA on a part-time basis. The part-time MA may be taken over two years, in which case the student takes two taught courses in the first year, and one taught course and the dissertation in the second. Alternatively, it can be taken over three years, in which case the student takes one taught course in each year. The dissertation can be written in any year, but it is strongly recommended that this be undertaken in the final year of the programme. It is submitted in September of the year in which the student registers for it.

Teaching

Teaching consists of a combination of lectures and seminars. Classes are normally between two and three hours per week for each course. Teaching methods include lectures with discussion, seminars (at which students present papers) and museum visits. Students at all levels are expected to take an active part in class presentations. A particularly important element is the training of the student's visual memory.

In addition to their studies on the MA programme, students at SOAS can participate in a wide range of research seminars, lectures and conferences that regularly take place in the School and in the University of London.

Assessment

For each of the three taught courses, the student will be expected to submit two or three pieces of written work usually around 3,000 to 4,500 words – for a total of 9,000 words per course. The emphasis is on developing essay skills during the session in preparation for the dissertation. In some courses the assessment is 100% on written work. On other courses, assessed course work forms 75% of the student’s final grade and an additional 25% is determined by slide quizzes, projects or other forms of assessment. The 10,000 word dissertation is submitted in September.

Learning Resources

SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.

Destinations

A Masters from the Department of the History of Art and Archaeology provides students with expertise in the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Our postgraduates progress to work in arts, culture and heritage roles, including in galleries, museums, archives, conservation, publishing and arts administration. The large portfolio of transferable skills they acquire enables them to forge careers in a range of other fields across the world. Our Masters programmes are also an excellent foundation for MPhil/PhD research.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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Has the end of the Cold War created a new world order? Has the fall of the Berlin Wall inaugurated a new Europe? Has 9/11 changed our world and the character of our democracies forever? Are we facing a ‘clash of cultures’ in the Middle East? Is American power declining and being replaced by new players on the world stage?. Read more

Has the end of the Cold War created a new world order? Has the fall of the Berlin Wall inaugurated a new Europe? Has 9/11 changed our world and the character of our democracies forever? Are we facing a ‘clash of cultures’ in the Middle East? Is American power declining and being replaced by new players on the world stage?

This MSc allows you to explore such questions critically and analytically while discovering how the recent past shaped the modern world. You will gain a comprehensive understanding of the increasingly global experience of humankind in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. A specialised methodological and historiographical course will help you appreciate the distinctiveness of contemporary history; its use of radio, television, film, and internet-based sources such as Wikileaks; and its methodology. This rigorous skills training will be supplemented by a variety of topical, specialised options, covering virtually every distinctive approach to history (e.g. political, social and economic) and every region on the globe, underlining the increasing globalisation of our recent past.

The MSc makes use of Edinburgh’s unique archival and bibliographical resources – the National Archives of Scotland, the National Library of Scotland, the University’s library and archives – and is enriched by the city’s key role in current British politics. Additionally, with our close association to the Centre for the Study of Modern and Contemporary History, Edinburgh is a wonderful environment for contemporary scholarship.

Programme structure

The programme combines methodological and substantive courses with intensive student participation. The analysis of diverse primary source material is essential, as is situating research findings within an established historiographical tradition. You will complete three compulsory courses and select a further three options from a wide range on offer. You will also complete a dissertation.

The compulsory courses are:

  • Historical Methodology
  • Historical Research: Skills and Sources
  • Introduction to Contemporary History

Option courses previously offered include those listed below. Option courses change from year to year and those available when you start your studies may be different from those shown in the list:

  • Conservatism in the United States, c.1930-c.1990
  • The Civil Rights Movement
  • Themes in American Historiography
  • The United States and the Cold War
  • War and Identities in Twentieth Century Britain and Ireland
  • History as Romance, Profession, Critique: Theory and Scholarship in the West, 1835 to 1985
  • Cinema and Society in South Asia, 1947-Present
  • Genocide in Contemporary History
  • Thinking the 20th Century - Hannah Arendt and the breakdown of European Civilization
  • Citizens and Subjects: concepts of citizenship in modern African intellectual history
  • The Germans and the East: Myth, Migration and Empire 1795 - 1970
  • The British Empire in Political Thought
  • Revolutions in Modern Europe
  • Gender, Crime and Deviancy: Britain c. 1860-1960

Career opportunities

This is an advanced qualification, valued and respected by employers and also suitable as preparation for a PhD and a long-term academic career. The combination of skills training, specialised seminars, and independent research provides you with transferable skills that will be beneficial whatever path you choose.

Graduates work in related areas such as museums, policy think-tanks, national and international civil services, non-governmental organisations, galleries, libraries and historic trusts. Others enter business, media, public administration or marketing.



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Many of the interconnected, global and political processes in the contemporary world stem from the legacies of imperialism and colonialism. Read more
Many of the interconnected, global and political processes in the contemporary world stem from the legacies of imperialism and colonialism. This innovative MA provides global, imperial and postcolonial perspectives on the making of the modern world.

This programme analyses the forces of globalisation, the global trajectory and dissemination of ideas, the relationship of knowledge to power, and the history of resistance to imperial expansion. It takes an expansive approach to the global history of ideas by examining representations, images, power, and cultural encounters. You will be taught by some of the foremost experts in their respective fields. The MA has particular, but not exclusive focus on South Asian, African and British Imperial history and cultures.

This programme is ideal for anybody wanting a career with an international aspect, entering fields such as journalism, the civil service, international NGOs and business. Its rigorous intellectual approach will be of particular benefit to those planning to pursue doctoral work, preparatory to an academic career.

The range of topics you will be able to pursue include:

• British Imperial Culture and Identity
• Cultures of Resistance
• Race in Global Perspective
• Colonial Power and Indigenous Knowledge
• Religion and Imperialism
• Anti-colonial Nationalism
• Cross-cultural Encounters

This programme:

• Is interdisciplinary in nature
• Taught by world renowned academics, including Professor Sir Christopher Bayly
• Has an extensive range of module choices

Why study Global and Imperial History at Queen Mary?

The School of History offers a wide range of postgraduate programmes and has a world-class research base. Our high-quality teaching is inspired and informed by our research, and carried out in an atmosphere conducive to learning. Our academic staff have outstanding research reputations and include six Fellows of the British Academy, the former President of the Royal Historical Society and two recipients of the French distinction of the Ordre des Palmes Académiques.

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The programme is tailored for students who wish to proceed to further research on the doctoral level on a topic related to the history of the Near and Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, East Asia and Africa, but it also makes sense as a stand-alone programme for those who wish to explore a specific topic or question within a shorter period of time. Read more

Who is this programme for?:

The programme is tailored for students who wish to proceed to further research on the doctoral level on a topic related to the history of the Near and Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, East Asia and Africa, but it also makes sense as a stand-alone programme for those who wish to explore a specific topic or question within a shorter period of time.

The two-year intensive language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with a country in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language course would enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.

Career opportunities include:

- Further historical research (PhD)
- Research positions in government institutions, NGOs, journalism, etc.

This is the only Master-level programme in Historical Research Methods focusing on the study of Asia and Africa in the UK. It provides the unique opportunity to develop and carry out a research project under the guidance of regional specialists and thus an ideal preparation for a research degree. It can also be taken with an intensive language pathway over two years, therefore making this programme unique in Europe.

Please see the webpage for the Japanese pathway of the programme, and contact the MA convenor of that pathway for further information on the language component. Further information on entry level language requirements can be found on the programme page.

The Korean pathway is designed for beginner learners of Korean. Students with prior knowledge of Korean are advised to contact the programme convenor, Dr Anders Karlsson (). Students will take four course units in the Korean language, one of them at a Korean university during the summer after year 1.

The Arabic pathway is designed for beginner learners of Arabic. Students will take four units of Arabic, one of them at the Qasid Institute in Jordan or another partner institution during the summer after year 1. Programme convenor: Dr Mustafa Shah ()

Email:

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/history/programmes/ma-historial-research-methods-and-intensive-language/

Structure

Students take 4 course units over the period of their programme of study (i.e. 2 or 4 years). This includes the core course Sources and Research Design in Historical Research (1 unit), which is taught on a one-to-one basis by the dissertation supervisor, the compulsory course Research Methods in History with Special Reference to Asia and Africa (1 unit), a minor course or courses (to the value of 1 unit) from a list of approved options and/or a language course from the Faculty of Languages and Cultures, and a 10,000 word dissertation (1 unit).

In the intensive language pathways, students take 2 intensive language units and one history unit in their first year. During the summer, they will participate in a summer school abroad (location dependant on language). Upon their return, they will take 1 language unit and 2 history units and complete work on their dissertation (1 unit). For example, Year 1: 2 intensive language units + compulsory course Research Methods in History with Special Reference to Asia and Africa; Year 2: 1 intensive language unit + core course Sources and Research Design in Historical Research (1 unit) + minor courses to the value of 1 unit + dissertation.

Aims and Outcomes

- Knowledge of a variety of theoretical issues and methodological approaches relevant for the study of historical problems

- Practical research and writing skills, developed through the study of primary and secondary sources related to Asian and African history

- A sound grounding for further research, either in a doctoral programme or in a professional environment

- A near proficient ability in the a language.

Knowledge:
1. How to locate materials and use research resources (particularly research library catalogues, archival hand lists, and digital resources), assess data and evidence critically from manuscripts, printed, and digital sources, and solve problems of conflicting sources and conflicting interpretations.

2. How to formulate and carry out a research project, based on a thorough knowledge and understanding of the particular field of study chosen by the student, the relevant literature and current debates.
3. Language skills appropriate to chosen region of study.

Intellectual (thinking) skills:
1. Students should become precise and cautious in their assessment of evidence and understand what the different types of historical sources can and cannot tell us.

2. Students should question interpretations, however authoritative, maintain an open-minded attitude to interpretations that challenge older interpretations, and reassess evidence for themselves.

3. Students should be able to think critically about the nature of the historical discipline, its methodology, historiography, and openness for interdisciplinary approaches.

4. Students should be able to reflect about the potential of historical research on non-Western societies and civilizations for the advancement of the historical discipline and human civilization in general.

Subject-based practical skills:
1. Effective writing and referencing skills, attention to detail and accuracy in presentation.

2. Effective oral presentation of seminar papers, articulation of ideas, and constructive participation in seminar discussions.

3. Ability to retrieve, sift and select information from a variety of sources, effective note-taking, record keeping and planning of projects.

4. Effective use of relevant professional databases.

5. In the two year intensive language pathway, to acquire/develop skills in a language to Effective Operational Proficiency level, i.e., being able to communicate in written and spoken medium in a contemporary language

Transferable skills:
1. Critical thinking.

2. Ability to communicate effectively in oral and written forms.

3. Information gathering skills from conventional and electronic sources.

4. Effective time-management, writing to word limits, and meeting deadlines.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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The MA in Culture and Colonialism explores literature, politics and culture from Ireland to India, from Africa to the Middle East. Read more

Multicultural, Multi-Disciplinary MA

The MA in Culture and Colonialism explores literature, politics and culture from Ireland to India, from Africa to the Middle East. Students analyse imperial ascendancies, race and racial theories, nationalist movements, postcolonial experiences, the rise of neo-colonial thought, multiculturalism and interculturalism, and the implications of globalisation and development for the modern world.

This MA allows students to combine the specialisation of postgraduate research with the adaptable skills training of a multi-disciplinary approach. Students benefit from the legacy of an MA programme established in 1994; the programme has continuously re-invented itself in changing ideological climates while maintaining its primary goal: to offer a critical education in the cultural discourses of power.

Careers

MA in Culture and Colonialism graduates have gone on to careers in development work, NGOs, law, university lecturing, publishing, media, journalism, community work, teaching (primary and secondary), film-making, advertising, and the Civil Service. The programme has a particularly strong record in research training: a high proportion of its students have proceeded to doctoral programmes in Ireland, Britain and North America, with many of them winning prestigious funding awards.

Teaching Staff

The programme's teaching staff over the years has been drawn from the disciplines of English, History, Political Science and Sociology, Economics, Irish Studies, Film Studies, Spanish, French, Archaeology, German, Italian, and Classics, and is supplemented by Irish and international guest lecturers.

Programme Outline

The full-time degree taken over a twelve-month period from September. The year is divided into two teaching semesters (September to December and January to April), with the summer period devoted to completing the dissertation. A two-year part-time option is also available. Students take six taught modules together with a (non-assessed) research training seminar, and produce a 15,000-word dissertation (30 ECTS) on a topic of their choice.

Programme Modules

Central Modules

EN541 Colonialism in Twentieth- and Twenty-First Century Cultural Theory
This module focuses on issues of identity, political agency and representation. It offers an introduction to twentieth-century theorisations of colonialism and neo-colonialism, especially in relation to cultural production, and their implications for twenty-first century socio-political thought. The distinctive position of Ireland in relation to postcolonial theory is considered, together with other national and international contexts. Some of the theorists discussed include Fanon, Said, Spivak and Ahmad.

SP544 Decolonization and Neo-Colonialism: The Politics of 'Development'
The phenomena of development and underdevelopment in those lands that have experienced colonial rule have been theorised in two broadly contrasting ways in social science: the modernisation perspective, which derives from the northern hemisphere by and large, and a series of counter-perspectives (such as structuralism, dependency, neo-Marxism and world systems theory), whose exponents hail from the southern hemisphere in the main. The module also considers the issue of how much light modernisation and counter-perspectives can shed on the Irish experience of development and underdevelopment.

HI546 Studies in the History of Colonialism and Imperialism
This module introduces students to some of the key thinkers and concepts in the writing of British imperial history. The work of scholars such as J. A. Hobson, Ronald Robinson and Jack Gallagher, Peter Cain and Tony Hopkins, Chris Bayly, Alan Lester and John Darwin will be discussed. Concepts such as finance imperialism, informal empire, the official mind, gentlemanly capitalism, colonial knowledge, imperial networks, and bridgeheads will be examined from a critical perspective. Students will be asked to read key texts, undertake wider reading and research to help put these key texts in context, comment on their readings, and present their own ideas as the basis for class discussion and debate.

Research Seminar (compulsory but not examined)
This module provides a training in research, analysis and writing techniques appropriate to the programme, as well as individual consultations on the formulation of dissertation topics. The seminar will take place throughout the year.

Option Modules (two chosen)

EN547 Literature and Colonialism
This module considers the relationship between literary modes and aesthetics and political power. It analyses literature connected to the British Empire and its former colonies, discussing English, Irish, Indian and African writers in relation to colonial power structures, nationalist movements and postcolonial developments. Genres covered include imperial adventure fiction, travel writing, late-Victorian urban Gothic, modernist and post-modernist fiction and poetry, postcolonial writing, and the twenty-first century multicultural novel.

EC535 Political Economy, Colonialism and Globalization
The aim of the module will be to identify the fundamental concepts of globalization by analysing the various ideologies, systems and structures that underpin the progression of global capitalism through the ages. Underlying philosophical theories will be linked with political, legal sociological and economic ideals that are often the driving forces behind these processes.

EN573 Travel Literature
The genre of travel writing includes a vast array of literary forms from journals to letters, ambassadorial reports, captivity narratives, historical descriptions, ethnographies, and natural histories. The appearance of such accounts explodes in the early modern period in an era of expanded travel for purposes of trade, education, exploration, and colonial settlement. This module looks at a range of documents from different historical moments to track the development of this important genre, including the emergence of travel writing by women.

EN549 Cinema and Colonialism
This module considers the relationships between colonialism and the theory and practice of cinema. Seminars may address the following themes: the Hollywood genres of the ‘Western’ and the ‘Vietnam movie’; postcolonial theories of cinema; Cuban cinema; cinema of anti-colonial revolution; neocolonialism and Irish cinema; African cinema; gender, colonialism and cinema; and Western representations of imperialism.

HI588 Studies in Regional Identities
This module introduces students to concepts of regional identities and explores various interpretative approaches to regional identity. Students will examine the role of history, language and religion in the construction and perpetuation of regional identity and will consider the relationship between regions and nation states. This is a team-taught module. While the content may vary according to the availability of staff from year to year, it will include Irish and European case studies.

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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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