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Explore a range of literary texts and themes from 1945 to the present day, with an option to focus on the 21st century if you choose.

The course offers you the opportunity to study cutting-edge topics such as the American novel after 1999, new directions in theory, the graphic novel, urban culture, performance studies, bioethics and cultures of conflict and dissent from Africa to the Middle East.

Key benefits

  • Unrivalled location in the centre of London, with easy access to the British Library and the major libraries and archives of the capital.
  • Flexible course offering a range of approaches to contemporary literature, culture and theory, taught by staff who specialis in the contemporary period
  • A dynamic, research-led department with an international reputation for excellence (ranked in the Top 10 in the UK for research in the most recent Research Excellence Framework).


Our course in Contemporary Literature, Culture & Theory gives you the opportunity to explore a range of topics and texts from 1945 to the present, with a particular focus on the intersection of literature, culture and theory. You will access postgraduate-level teaching and research training in a wide range of aspects of English literature, language and culture, in a research-led environment that encourages scholarly inquiry and independent thought. We will train you in research and writing skills(including manuscript work, bibliographies and internet resources) in preparation for a large-scale research project. This course is also an excellent foundation for and an introduction to what will be required for a doctorate.

Course format and assessment


If you are a full-time student, we will provide four to six hours of teaching through lectures and seminars each week, and we will expect you to undertake 26 hours of independent study.

If you are a part-time student, we will provide two to four hours of teaching through lectures and seminars each week, and we will expect you to undertake 13 hours of independent study.

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.


Your performance will be assessed mainly through written coursework or presentations. Forms of written assessment typically include essays and critical commentaries. Coursework contributes approximately 100% and examinations approximately 0% to your final mark.


The course is primarily taught on the King’s College London Strand Campus. We are located right in the heart of London, offering you easy access to the wealth of cultural opportunities in one of the world’s most vibrant cities, as well as its multiple world-class libraries. You will also have access to our own extensive collections and resources.

Regulating body

King’s College London is regulated by the Office for Students.

Career prospects

We expect some students will go on to pursue research. Others may transfer the skills they develop to careers in teaching, journalism, cultural arts and management, or the legal and financial sectors.

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Visit the Contemporary Literature, Culture & Theory MA page on the King’s College London website for more details!