The Cultural History pathway encourages you to investigate artefacts and ideas, material objects and mentalities, medical documents and museums, photographs and films and explore key themes that have shaped the past, including national identity, gender, race, sexuality and modernity.
On this absorbing MA programme you’ll study one of the most exciting fields of historical inquiry; cultural history examines the culture of the time in order to understand how people made sense of the world they inhabited.
It will introduce you to the specialist research methods used by cultural historians, to ongoing historiographical and theoretical debates and to related disciplines such as cultural studies, literary studies, history of art and sociology. You will also get the opportunity to explore the area of cultural history that interests you most in your dissertation.
The MA draws together case studies from across Britain and continental Europe, the European Empires and North America from the 18th century to the present day. Taking the Cultural History MA will:
- Deepen your understanding of the cultural history of Britain and its Empire, continental Europe and North America since the 18th century
- Encourage you to think about a broad range of questions and debates in cultural history
- Allow you to engage with current debates on such themes as gender, modernity, national identity, sexuality and the politics of culture
- Give you the chance to work closely with a dynamic group of young historians and established scholars who themselves research and write about the cultural history of Britain, continental Europe and North America.
Students study two 30-credit core modules and four 15-credit research training modules, culminating in a 60-credit dissertation.
Breadth of expertise
The interests of our staff and PhD students are extremely diverse and span the medieval, early modern and modern periods.
Their work encompasses political, social, cultural, economic, military and diplomatic history, across Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and the Americas.
Active seminar programmes, linked to our research centres and MA programmes, enable staff and postgraduates to present their work and listen to eminent visiting speakers.
These are our on-going seminar series:
Medieval and Renaissance Studies
Contemporary Cultural and Social
Contemporary History and Policy
New Research (run by our postgraduate students)
Recent conferences and workshops have addressed ‘Religion in the Spanish Baroque’, ‘Text and Place in Medieval and Early Modern Europe’, ‘Re-thinking Post- Slavery’ and ‘British Nuclear Culture’.
Taught programmes that prepare you for future research
By pursuing our programmes you’ll gain the skills and knowledge you need to carry out further research towards a PhD.
Our MA programmes are taught by research-active experts who bring their knowledge of, and passion for, their subjects into the seminar room.
Teaching takes place in small-group seminars or workshops and through one-to-one tutorials, as we believe this leads to the best collaboration between students and staff.
We offer programmes in:-
International Slavery Studies
Medieval and Renaissance Studies
You can also pursue an MRes in History or a vocational Masters in Archives and Records Management.
Support and skills training for PhD students
As a postgraduate research student you’ll receive comprehensive skills from the Graduate School, the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and History Department.
This will equip you with the research skills you need to successfully complete your PhD.
Our PhD programmes place a strong emphasis on independent research and study, culminating in a 100,000-word dissertation. Two supervisors (normally experts in your chosen field) who will advise and support you through the process.
Our commitment to postgraduate students
We welcome enquiries from all postgraduate students interested in studying here and will give you all the academic, practical and pastoral support we can.
Students have a voice here and are represented on the School Postgraduate Committee. There’s also a dedicated staff – student liaison committee to oversee our MA and PhD programmes.
Postgraduate studentships and bursaries are often available.