London has long been an international centre of cultural production and political power. This interdisciplinary programme takes the city as its focus, using London as a central example, resource and inspiration. It is taught collaboratively, drawing on expertise from the Culture, Space and Power research theme in the School of Geography, and from the School of English and Drama. The programme brings together historical and contemporary perspectives on metropolitan culture through approaches that span the humanities and social sciences, and through engaging with urban history and theory, literature, art practice, performance, exhibitions, the built environment and more.
- provides a sound conceptual base as well as suitable practical training to conduct independent research on London, introducing resources in the city and ways of using them intelligently and creatively
- makes the most of Queen Mary’s location in the East End, being close to key cultural resources and institutions as well as in an area whose historical changes and current transformations provide a focus for study and debate
- involves working with a range of London-based archives, libraries, museums and other repositories with collections relating to the cultural life of the city, while exploring the practices of museums, institutions, artists and others working beyond the academy.
Why study at QMUL Geography?
The School of Geography at Queen Mary University of London
is recognised as an international centre for excellence in teaching and research. Our work is at the forefront of human geography, shaping debates and providing significant new insight and understanding. We are also known for our friendly, collegial and welcoming ethos and are home to many of contemporary human geography’s best known scholars. Almost 80 per cent of the School’s research outputs (books and articles) are rated as world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*) placing it 5th in the UK for this measure. Scores increased across all areas and the School is ranked joint 11th for geography in the UK overall.
We're a School that cares about the world beyond the university, working with a range of community groups, artists, cultural and heritage institutions and policy makers, particularly here in East London. Our passion is to demonstrate through research and teaching the intellectual and political significance of geographical research and understanding. We encourage our students to become part of this vibrant intellectual culture. This programme is linked with The City Centre, our dedicated centre for collaborative research and related activities that are focused on the city and urban life.
The programme, taught with modules from the School of Geography and the School of English and Drama.
Modules can include: Art, Performance and the City; Contemporary Theatre and Performance; Cultural Geography in Practice; Empire Race and Immigration; Geographical Thought and Practice; London Spaces from FitzStephen to Stow; Metro Intellectuals: Women writing in the city in the Romantic Period; Metropolitan Matters: A material history of London from the Victorians to the present; Postcolonialism, Language and Identity; Sociability: Literature and the City; The Propaganda War in London, 1793-1796; Victorian Print Culture; Writing the East End. (check the QMUL website for latest)
The programme is led by Professor Alastair Owens, Professor of Historical Geography.
You will normally be expected to have a first degree with first or upper-second class honours in a humanities or social science subject (or equivalent international qualification). We actively encourage applications from students who have developed an interest in any aspect of metropolitan culture at undergraduate level and/or who have practical experience of working in related areas.