What Will You Study

The MA in English Literary Studies is the Department’s main taught MA in English Literature. We offer different pathways specialising in a period or area of study:

  • Early Modern Literature including Shakespeare and the Renaissance
  • Romantic and Victorian Literature
  • Modern and Contemporary Literary Studies including Film and Media
  • Critical-Creative Writing which combines critical approaches to writing with the practice of writing itself, including fiction and poetry
  • English Literary Studies - allows study across range of periods and subjects
  • Literary and Cultural Studies which is taught with the Department of Sociology and explores contemporary debates in cultural theory

All pathways have core modules, to which can be added optional modules from the full range of modules. The generalist English Literary Studies is especially flexible, allowing a mix of genres and periods and also includes creative writing options, giving students a unique opportunity to study a creative-critical MA. Importantly, students can craft a pathway that suits them.

For funding purposes, this course may constitute the first year of a 1+3 graduate programme (see key facts).

Compulsory modules (all pathways):

  • Dissertation
  • Research Methodology

Additional compulsory modules:

  • Contemporary Literary Studies – option choices focused on period
  • Early Modern Literature – Bodies and Spirits in Early Modern Literature; Politics and Place in Early Modern Literature
  • Literary and Cultural Studies – Critical Debates in Cultural Studies
  • Romantic and Victorian Literature – option choices focused on period

Optional modules: 

English Literary Studies students may choose from any of the following modules (and also have access to the above compulsory elements for the other pathways). Other pathways may choose from a more limited subset, tied more closely to their area of specialism. Modules offered are subject to change. 

  • American Fiction
  • Locating Contemporary Poetry: The Living Tradition
  • Contemporary British Fiction
  • Bodies and Spirits in Early Modern Literature
  • Politics and Place in Early Modern Literature
  • Post-Colonial Women’s Writing and Film
  • Contemporary Gothic: Text and Screen
  • Romanticism and Literary Theory
  • 19th Century Literature and Technology
  • On Location in the Lakes
  • The Victorian Novel and Film
  • Romance and Realism: The Evolution of 19th Century Fiction
  • 19th Century Literary Siblings
  • Literature and Film
  • Victorian Extremes: the Coming of Modernity
  • Fusions: Genres, Critical and Creative
  • Subcultural Fictions
  • Writing the 19th Century City
  • The Byron-Shelley Circle
  • Rewriting the Victorians
  • Special Subject Module
  • Posthumanism: Literature after the Human
  • Writing Fiction
  • Writing Poetry

Additional optional modules:

(Literature and Cultural Studies Only)

  • Enjoyment, Technology, Consumption
  • Debates in Contemporary Feminism: Feminism and Post-Colonial Theory
  • Feminist Cultural Theory
  • Popular Visual Culture