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MA Modern European Literature

Course Description

Kent’s MA in Modern European Literature enables you to study European writers, genres, figures or movements within their respective socio-historical contexts.

The literary cultures of Europe have produced some of the world’s richest writings, including the works of Proust, Kafka, Woolf, Joyce, and Dostoevsky, among many others. This MA programme enables you to engage in detail with these and other writers and to study them in their original languages. You should be able to read literary texts in two modern languages in addition to English.

The programme is offered by the Department of Comparative Literature (http://www.kent.ac.uk/secl/complit/index.html) and benefits from staff expertise in a range of areas, including European modernism, postmodernism, postcolonial literature, literature and medicine, literature and sexuality, literature and psychoanalysis and literature and the visual arts. Our programme also draws on additional expertise in the School of European Culture and Languages (http://www.kent.ac.uk/secl/index.html), particularly from colleagues in the departments of French, German, Hispanic Studies and Italian.

You begin by studying a choice of four modules across the Autumn and Spring terms, before writing a 12,000-word dissertation over the summer, supervised by an expert in the department.

The MA in Modern European Literature is an ideal programme for anyone with language skills wanting to gain in-depth insight into modern Europe, its culture and literatures, and fosters independent critical thinking as well as an awareness of linguistic and national specificities.

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/31/modern-european-literature


The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation. Most programmes will require you to study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also have the option to take modules from other programmes so that you may customise your programme and explore other subject areas that interest you.

FR866 - Literature and Theory (30 credits)
FR872 - Theories of Art in Modern French Thought (30 credits)
GE804 - German Modernism (30 credits)
CP813 - Literature and Medicine (30 credits)
FR807 - Postmodern French Detective Fiction (30 credits)
LS806 - Spanish Cinema (30 credits)
LS810 - History and Memory: Exploring the Independence period throug (30 credits)
FR804 - Real Fictions: The Documentation of Modernity (30 credits)
CP805 - European Modernism: Sexual and Textual Deviance (30 credits)
CP808 - Writing the Self: Autobiography in the Modern Period (30 credits)
GE805 - Post-War Literature and Memory (30 credits)
CP998 - Comparative Literature Dissertation (60 credits)


Assessment is by one 5,000-word essay for each module and the dissertation.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

- provide you with the knowledge and skills to prepare you for the academic study of European or single-language literature at MPhil/PhD level

- attract outstanding students, irrespective of race, background, gender, or physical disability from within the UK

- enable you to begin to specialise in specific research areas whilst maintaining broad comparative interests

- enable you to hone your ability to read literature and literary theory critically and comparatively in at least two European languages as well as English

- provide you, consistent with point 1 above, with a transition from undergraduate study to independent research

- provide you with a training that will culminate, if followed through to PhD level, in the ability to submit articles to refereed journals across the range of European literature.

Research areas

- Centre for Language and Linguistic Studies (CLLS)

Founded in 2007, the Centre for Language and Linguistic Studies (CLLS) promotes interdisciplinary collaboration in linguistic research and teaching. Membership embraces not just the members of English Language and Linguistics but also other SECL members with an interest in the study of language, as well as researchers in philosophy, computing, psychology and anthropology, reflecting the many and varied routes by which individuals come to a love of language and an interest in the various disciplines and sub-disciplines of linguistics.

- Centre for Modern European Literature

Many of the most significant European writers and literary movements of the modern period have traversed national, linguistic, and disciplinary borders. Co-directed by members of Comparative Literature, French, and German, the Centre for Modern European Literature aims to promote collaborative interdisciplinary research that can do justice to these kinds of border crossing.

Ranging across English, French, German, Italian and Spanish literature, the Centre focuses in particular on the European avant-garde, European modernism and postmodernism, literary theory, the international reception of European writers, and the relations between modern European literature and the other arts, including painting, photography, film, music and architecture. The Centre’s activities include a lecture and seminar series and the regular organisation of conferences. It also works with the editors of the postgraduate journal Skepsi, and runs the MA in Modern European Literature.


Comparative literature graduates develop key skills, including critical thinking, analysis and problem solving. They go on to successful careers in areas such as the media, academia and many different cultural institutions including libraries, museums and galleries.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

Visit the MA Modern European Literature page on the University of Kent website for more details!

Student Profiles

Graduate School Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

The Graduate School Scholarship Scheme was established in 2009 to celebrate the founding of the University's Graduate School, which is responsible for the strategic development of graduate education and research within the University. The aim of the scheme is enable Kent graduates to continue study at the University in the next academic year after graduation from their undergraduate degree.Candidates can hold the Graduate School Scholarship in conjunction with other awards except where these awards offer full fees and a Research Council UK equivalent maintenance grant. The Graduate School Scholarship cannot be held in conjunction with the University's loyalty discount.Criteria- Candidates must hold a Bachelors degree with honours (or undergraduate Masters degree) awarded in 2016 by the University of Kent. This scholarship offer is not available to those students who have been awarded foundation degrees, HNCs, HNDs or postgraduate degrees.
- Candidates must have satisfied the criteria for admission and register for a postgraduate degree (Masters or Doctorate) with the University of Kent by 1 October 2016. Students considering this offer are advised to check the entry criteria for their favoured postgraduate programme of study prior to application.
- Candidates must be self-funded, i.e. they are paying their tuition fees themselves.
- Open to overseas/home/EU fee paying students.

Value of Scholarship(s)

£1,000 reduction (£500 per annum for part-time students, for 2 years) in tuition fees


Kent 2016 graduates who earn a Bachelor's degree with honours (or undergraduate Master's degree) and register for a postgraduate degree at Kent by 1 October 2016.

Application Procedure

There is no need to make a separate application. The tuition fee reduction will be provided to all eligible 2016 graduates on registration.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A first or 2.1 in a relevant subject (eg, English, French, German, Italian, Hispanic Studies, Classics), or equivalent. You are expected to be able to read literary works in any TWO of the following European languages (in addition to English): French, German, Italian, Spanish. For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages (View Website).

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