Masters degrees in South Asian Languages & Literature focus on the analysis of languages and literary texts from the South Asia region, giving postgraduates a rich understanding of the linguistic and cultural history of these diverse countries.
Some programmes give students the opportunity to learn a South Asian language (or develop existing language skills). If this is of interest of you, you’ll need to show evidence of language-learning abilities (or prior knowledge of the language in question).
Common specialisms include Postcolonial Studies, Translation Studies and Comparative Literature.
South Asia is the world’s most populous region, comprising countries such as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The study of the languages and literatures of these nations is as rewarding as you’d expect, spanning ancient civilisations through to contemporary, postcolonial society. Study abroad in South Asia is sometimes a key component of these courses.
You could study the grammar, history and structure of languages like Urdu, Hindustani and Bengali, gaining new perspectives on South Asian culture in the process.
Common postgraduate destinations include academia, journalism, translation and publishing.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The Contemporary India (Research) MRes will provide you with the knowledge and research skills to investigate and understand political, social, economic and technological change in India. You will use these skills to produce an original piece of research with guidance from our expert staff, allowing you to explore your own academic and professional interests.
Our research-track master’s course offers you the opportunity to learn advanced research methods and apply them to modern India. The course can be tailored to your specific research interests, but it also draws on the expertise of the India Institute in multiple disciplines. It encourages you to produce work that is both academically rigorous and potentially practical in its application. You will be able to specialise in one of five pathways: Politics and political economy; Anthropology and social change; History; Cultural production in India (including media, literature and the performing arts); and Foreign and security policy.
The main component of this MRes is a piece of independent research in the form of a 30,000- word (maximum) dissertation. You will research and write your dissertation under the supervision of our expert staff.
You will typically have 20 hours of teaching per 20-credit taught module as well as 180 hours of self-study (some modules may involve lab work or e-learning which would require less self-guided learning). Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.
For the dissertation module, you usually have 1 dissertation workshop and 10 contact hours of one-to-one or group consultation with supervisors to complement 587 hours of self-study and project work.
Assessment methods will depend on the modules selected. Most 20-credit modules are assessed by an essay or essays but some are assessed on class participation and attendance, oral vivas or exams, or a combination of these.
The Dissertation module is assessed by a 30,000-word essay.
Our course can serve as preparation for further academic research towards a PhD, or as an opportunity if you’re a mid-career professional to develop applied research focused on particular policy problems or professional themes.
The master’s programme in Asian Studies at Leiden University offers an outstanding qualification from one of the leading centres for Asian studies in Europe.
The Asian Studies master's programme offers one-year specialisations on East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, the History, Arts and Culture of Asia and the Politics, Society and Economy of Asia and two-year specialisations on China, Japan, Korea.
Expertise on Asia at Leiden University is internationally renowned and spans the whole of Asia. Small classes give you direct and regular contact with your lecturers. You will learn from some of Europe's best scholars in the field, many of whom are at the leading edge of Asia-related research.
With an expansive curriculum and flexible programme formats, you may tailor the curriculum to reflect your interests or career ambitions. You can choose to focus on a language and a single country, or on a specific discipline and region. You can also choose from a broad range of electives.
During your studies you will have the opportunity to develop your fluency in a classical or modern language. You also have the option of taking an intensive modern Indonesian language course.
All of the Asian Studies programmes make the most of Leiden University's world-class resources, including its famous collections of Asian artifacts.
Students in the MA in Asia Pacific Studies (MAPS) program develop valuable cultural competency of the Asia Pacific region. Reflecting the diversity and innovative spirit of San Francisco, the program offers a wide range of courses in the history, literature, politics, business, and culture of Asian regions.
The interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to give students the flexibility and independence to pursue their passions. Separate concentrations — humanities/social sciences and business — allow students to take courses that align with their professional or academic goals after graduation.
You can find more information on our website
Students completing the MAPS Program will be able to demonstrate:
MAPS students may request training and advice on pursuing a job in an international field, including resume design, mock interviews, and other job training skills.
San Francisco is a nucleus for opportunities that connect the city with the Asia Pacific region. MAPS students take full advantage of San Francisco’s location and resources to gain career and research experience, immersing themselves in the city’s vibrant and diverse Asian Pacific communities through internship and networking opportunities.