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English Literature: Literature & Modernity: 1900 to the Present MSc

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MSc Literature and Modernity: 1900 to the Present - 1 Year (Full-time)
MSc Literature and Modernity: 1900 to the Present - 2 Years (Part-time)

Fees & costs information

Where available, individual programme fees are linked above. For details information on fee status, policies and payment see:

Contact information
Graduate School Administrator
Phone: +44 (0)131 650 4114
Dr Carole Jones (Programme Director)
Phone: +44 (0)131 651 1822
Address: Graduate School
School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
Room 1.13, 50 George Square
Central Campus

This programme examines a range of literary and theoretical contexts, introducing ways that writing and imagination shape and share in cultural and political processes.

Entry requirements

A UK 2:1 degree, or its international equivalent, in a relevant discipline is normally required.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

If you completed a CAE or CPE before January 2015 please contact the Admissions Office for the accepted grades.

Find out more about our language requirements:

How to apply

You must submit a reference with your application.

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

In addition to the supporting documents requested on the application form, you should include a sample of written work of about 3,000 words. This can be a previous piece of work from an undergraduate degree.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Programme description

You will explore the ways literature since 1900 has sought to change and modernise itself, in the context of wider developments of modernity characterising the age.

Your studies will take you through a broad and fascinating field, from the originators of literary ‘modernity’ – including TS Eliot, Ezra Pound, James Joyce and Virginia Woolf – to the present day and the continuing impact of their innovations.

Studying in the world’s first UNESCO City of Literature, you will analyse the most challenging and exciting literature written in English since 1900, and explore the range of historical, intellectual, cultural, political and philosophical factors informing the period’s writing – particularly in its highly innovative modernist and postmodernist phases.

Programme structure

The programme will be taught through a combination of seminars and tutorials. You take one compulsory and one option course in each of two semesters, along with a course in research methods. You will then complete an independently researched dissertation.

Compulsory courses:

  • Literature and Modernity I: Modernist Aesthetics
  • Literature and Modernity II: Late Modernism and Beyond

Option courses may include:

  • Critical Theory: Issues and Debates
  • Literature and the Great War
  • Poet-Critics
  • Modernism and Empire
  • Post-Colonial Writing
  • Tragedy and Modernity
  • Twentieth-Century Feminist Fictions
  • Contemporary American Fiction

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this programme you will have gained:

  • practical knowledge of the range of theoretical and philosophical ideas informing modern and postmodern literary criticism
  • knowledge and understanding of the role of literary writing in the formation of contemporary culture
  • a grounding in the research methods of literary studies

Career opportunities

Graduates of this programme will acquire a thorough knowledge and understanding of literary history and culture post-1900, and a range of transferable skills in research and enquiry, critical thinking and evaluation, and varieties of written and oral communication. This programme will also provide you with research and analytical skills that can be extended into future advanced study in the subject area.

Further information

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