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History & Archaeology×

Masters Degrees in French History, United Kingdom

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At MPhil/PhD level we aim for students to make the transition into fully fledged, independent academic researchers, with the skills necessary to present their research orally as well as in writing, in addition to pushing back the frontiers of knowledge. Read more
At MPhil/PhD level we aim for students to make the transition into fully fledged, independent academic researchers, with the skills necessary to present their research orally as well as in writing, in addition to pushing back the frontiers of knowledge. Such independence is achieved on the basis of a full appreciation of the hallmarks of good scholarship, such as original thought, the proper use of references and background material, appropriate use of methodology and accountable reporting procedures, and it is these priorities that we aim to impart to our students.

Once equipped with the generic and discipline-specific tools for carrying out research, you pursue your particular research interests, supported by regular meetings with your supervisor and attendance at MPhil/PhD seminars.

We are able to provide supervision in most aspects of French language, literature and culture, including: the Renaissance; classicism; the Enlightenment; literature from the eighteenth to the twenty-first century; travel literature; the fantastic; literature and the visual arts; literary criticism; gender studies; history of French thought; contemporary literature; French linguistics; bilingualism; French cinema; colonial and contemporary French history. Supervision in interdisciplinary subjects is also possible.

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This unique MA in French and British Decorative Arts and Interiors focuses on the development of interiors and decorative arts in England and France in the “long” eighteenth century (c.1660-c.1830) and their subsequent rediscovery and reinterpretation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Read more

Course outline

This unique MA in French and British Decorative Arts and Interiors focuses on the development of interiors and decorative arts in England and France in the “long” eighteenth century (c.1660-c.1830) and their subsequent rediscovery and reinterpretation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

A key element of the course is the emphasis on the first-hand study of furniture, silver and ceramics, where possible in the context of historic interiors. Based in central London at the European School of Economics, it draws upon the outstanding collections of the nearby Wallace Collection and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

The MA is designed to appeal to those wishing to pursue careers in heritage organisations, antique-dealing and auctioneering, museums, conservation, interior design or university teaching and research. However, those with a strong personal interest in studying the subject for its own sake are also very welcome.

With its focus on first-hand study of decorative arts within historic interiors, the programme provides a vocational and academic training which has enabled students to pursue careers in museums, interior design, antique dealing, and auctioneering. Some of our past students now work at the Royal Collection, the National Trust and English Heritage (see What our students and alumni say).

The MA also provides an excellent spring-board for students wanting to do a PhD in art history or related disciplines.

Find out more about our School of Humanities on http://www.buckingham.ac.uk/humanities.

Teaching

Teaching is carried out through a combination of lectures supported by seminars and tutorials. A key feature of the Buckingham teaching method is the use of small tutorial groups which provide the most effective means of ensuring that the students benefit from the academic expertise at their disposal. It is also the philosophy of Buckingham’s faculty to be available to students outside the scheduled tutorial times and to encourage good working relationships between staff and students.

The MA is taught by staff from the University of Buckingham, with the participation of outside experts from the Wallace Collection, the Victoria and Albert Museum, English Heritage, the Royal Institute of British Architects, the Soane Museum. There are also a number of renowned independent scholars who give lectures and lead some of the seminars and class trips.

UK Study Trips

There are frequent trips to collections in and around London, and a study week at Buckingham exploring local country houses such as Woburn Abbey, Waddesdon Manor, Boughton and Blenheim Palace, with their important decorative arts collections.

Paris Study Week

In the second term there is a study week in Paris, where students are granted privileged access to some of the private apartments at Versailles not normally accessible to the public, as well as a number of very important eighteenth-century private houses in Paris, open by special permission.

Professional Practice Projects and Placements in Museums and Galleries

Students also have the opportunity, through the Professional Practice Project to plan an exhibition in a museum, research a project to restore an historic interior, or undertake a part-time museum placement, thereby acquiring useful vocational skills and experience. Some of our students are currently doing placements at English Heritage and Strawberry Hill.

Course Structure

The course starts each September and finishes the following September. During the first term students study the development of the decorative arts and the interior in France and England between c.1660 and the end of the eighteenth century. In the second term students examine revivalism and the practical and historical problems of reinterpreting eighteenth-century interiors and objects. This is combined with a professional practice project designed to equip students with skills and experience applicable to careers in museums and built heritage.

Teaching takes place two days a week (excluding class trips) over two terms, or one day a week for part-time students. During the third term, students research a dissertation under supervision, which is written up over the summer for submission at the end of September. Assessment is by means of coursework and the dissertation.

Subject to the agreement of the Programme Director, there are some options for part-time study, one day a week over two years, or by deferral of the dissertation.

Apply here http://www.buckingham.ac.uk/humanities/ma/decorativearts.

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This interdisciplinary programme aims to provide you with the opportunity to develop your knowledge and understanding of medieval society and culture. Read more
This interdisciplinary programme aims to provide you with the opportunity to develop your knowledge and understanding of medieval society and culture. Staff expertise, drawn from across the University, covers a wide range of disciplines and specialisms including Archaeology; History; Islamic studies; Law; Music; Theology; Visual and material culture; and the literatures of England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain from the Fall of the Roman Empire to the Renaissance. Particular areas of strength include medieval religious culture, Christian-Muslim interaction, intellectual and elite culture, and the history of medicine.

The University library maintains extensive holdings in all these disciplines, extensive audio-visual collections and a number of medieval manuscripts (including the Syon Collection), while Exeter Cathedral Library and Archives and the Devon Heritage Centre contain further significant medieval manuscripts, documents and early printed books. You will benefit from contact with leading scholars in the field, whilst receiving the training suitable for MPhil/PhD research.

Modules

A range of optional modules are available which reflect the varied research interests of academic staff across the Centre for Medieval Studies. These interests range widely across the medieval period and cover Britain, Europe and the Islamic world. They also represent several disciplines, including History, Archaeology, Classics, Literature, Music, Art History, Theology and Islamic Studies.

The core module Interpreting the Middle Ages: Images, Texts and Contexts will give students an overview of these different disciplinary approaches and show how they can be applied to the study of medieval texts and objects. Other core modules are Medieval Research Skills, which introduces students to the skills needed to work with medieval sources such as palaeography and codicology, and Current Research in Medieval Studies which asks students to reflect on how academic research projects are designed and presented, and gives them guidance in developing their own dissertation projects. Students also have the option of taking Latin modules and are strongly encouraged to do so if they are considering going on to an MPhil or PhD.

The programme

- offers an excellent, interdisciplinary education in medieval studies, covering a wide range of topics and approaches across the medieval period;
- gives students the opportunity to work with the medieval sources in and around Exeter, for example at Exeter Cathedral, the Devon Heritage Centre and the University’s Special Collections;
- produces graduates who are highly competent in subject-specific, core academic, and personal and key skills that are both relevant and transferable to employment;
- encourages participation in research seminar programmes offering insights into a very wide range of research cultures and specialisms and into how academics go about designing and presenting research projects;
- offers excellent preparation for students intending to continue on to doctoral-level research with a good track record in obtaining funding for further study.

Research areas

As an MA Medieval Studies student you will be welcome to join the Centre for Medieval Studies (http://humanities.exeter.ac.uk/history/research/centres/medieval/) , which brings together academic staff and Postgraduate students from a wide range of disciplines across the University’s Colleges. We are brought together by our shared interests which run from the Early Middle Ages to the early Renaissance and may include archaeology, theology, music, literature and law. We hold regular seminars and research events which, if you decide to join us at Exeter, we hope you will not only attend but become an active part of.

Research is at the heart of History and our students are encouraged to come to Departmental Research Seminars and become an active part of wider research community. Our research centres regularly hold seminars and other research events which MA students are welcome to attend.
Our current research centres include:
• Centre for Early Modern Studies
• Centre for Imperial and Global History
• Centre for Maritime Historical Studies
• Centre for War, State and Society
• Centre for Medical History
• Centre for Medieval Studies
• Institute of Cornish Studies

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This is a fully interdisciplinary programme, involving the Departments of English, History, History of Art, and Archaeology. Read more
This is a fully interdisciplinary programme, involving the Departments of English, History, History of Art, and Archaeology. It offers the opportunity for you to study the culture and cultural history of the eighteenth century from new perspectives, as well as to lay foundations for higher degrees within the various disciplines involved in the programme.

We do not assume that you have any prior knowledge of more than one discipline, or that you wish to abandon whatever discipline you pursued in your earlier studies. Our aim is to encourage you to develop a kind of intellectual curiosity that is open to different methods of inquiry, and interested in exploring many different aspects of the period.

The MA can be taken full-time over one year, or part-time over two years.

Structure

In addition to their core module, students follow one optional module in the first term, and two optional modules in the second term. A range of module courses taught by staff from the English, History, Philosophy and History of Art Departments are available each year.

All courses are taught by weekly two-hour seminars. Assessment is by four term papers and a 14,000-16,000-word dissertation written over the summer term and vacation. Part-time students are encouraged to use the first summer term of their two years to begin working on their dissertation topic.

Students will also take classes in research training.

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