English Literature


This one-year taught postgraduate degree brings together theory and practice in new and innovative ways. The programme is distinctive for its integration of traditional bibliography, advanced theoretical approaches, training in special collections, and hands-on work placements.


Book History is a dynamic and rapidly growing area of interdisciplinary study that attends to the book as an artefact in material culture. It reminds us that ideas circulate through a material world of things, from medieval manuscripts to contemporary e-readers. It explains how print rose to a position of cultural dominance between the 1430s and 1800 and in doing so helped to structure new institutions, new models of social organization, new political ideologies, new religious movements, new sociologies of knowledge, and new understandings of the self. And it equips us to understand the communications revolution that we are currently living through, as the book migrates from print to digital media.

The MSc in Book History and Material Culture attracts outstanding students from a variety of academic and professional backgrounds in the UK and internationally. Some graduates from the MSc go on to pursue doctoral research and academic careers, while others pursue successful careers in publishing, libraries, archives, museums, galleries and other cultural institutions.

The MSc in Book History and Material Culture has been accredited by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP).  CILIP is the leading body representing the information professions. CILIP granted formal accreditation following an assessment visit on 29th April.

The programme draws on expertise from across the university, in particular from members of the Department of English Literature, and the staff of the University Library.

See the People page at the Centre for the History of the Book website for a list of current staff: