Our MA in English Studies invites you to choose from a number of distinctive pathways through the programme.
Our Writing in the Modern Age pathway explores 20th and 21st century literature and culture. Its core module, ‘Modernism and After’, tracks the central debates that run through modern writing and criticism. What is ‘modern’ and what comes after it? What counts as ‘art’? How have relations between ‘high’ and ‘low’ altered over time? How does writing relate to racial or gendered ‘otherness’? How has writing rethought the politics of freedom and containment? How does literature change with new recording and distribution formats? How can criticism deal with creativity? These questions open up the last 120 years or so of literary and cultural innovation, and frame all the other modules you choose to take.
Writing in the Modern Age is a literature MA with an interdisciplinary, cross-cultural mindset. Our optional modules don’t just examine London or New York modernism, but consider how modernism looks from Cape Town, or Dublin, or Kingston, Jamaica. It offers a long view of the modern age, with modules from the fin-de-siècle to the very contemporary. Other modules on psychoanalysis, form, war legacies, and critical theory examine how intimately modern literary innovation has been bound together with the disciplines of modern self-understanding and group identity. All will help you shape your particular question for the dissertation, which you’ll work on one-to-one with academic staff during the final third of the year.