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MA Modern History

Modern History MA

This MA introduces you to the advanced study of the history of the modern world.

One core taught module in Term 1 provides a foundation in historical methods and theoretical frameworks used to study society and culture from the early modern period to the contemporary world; while a second analyses key components of ‘the modern’ as it has unfolded across the world. Optional modules explore key themes in modern history in Term 2.

You’ll be able to take advantage of the Department’s six research centres, including participating in the lively schedule of academic research seminars, lectures and conferences.

The programme will particularly appeal if you wish to acquire the conceptual and practical skills needed to conduct further research in history.

Autumn term

Outline syllabus

Week 1: Sovereignty

Week 2: States and State-Building

Week 3: Post-Colonialism

Week 4: Capitalism

Week 5: Technology

Week 6: Reading Week

Week 7: Gender

Week 8: Race

Week 9: Bodies

Week 10: Subjectivity and the Self

Spring term

  • Two Optional Modules: to be selected from options listed below (30 CATS each)

Summer term

  • Dissertation (15,000 words) (60 CATS)

Optional modules

This team-taught one-term option complements other modules by focusing on the (vast) role of religion in early modernity. Rather than following a chronological structure or dealing with individual denominations, it examines religious issues through (a) the perspectives of different academic disciplines and (b) coverage of key themes. Students will be able to engage with the multiplicity of approaches pursued in the field more generally and by members of the History department in particular.

This optional module is intended to give a critical overview of one of the fastest growing and most dynamic areas of modern historical enquiry - the history of gender and sexuality. It aims to provide students with an understanding of how feminist and queer history has emerged from earlier approaches to the study of history, what makes it distinctive and what its principal strengths and weaknesses might be. It spans geographical period and chronological period.

This module draws on the considerable expertise throughout the department to consider how historians engage with the question of 'empire.' It spans geographical area and chronological period.

This module draws on the considerable expertise throughout the department to consider how historians engage with the question of 'consumption.' It spans geographical area and chronological period.

This module will address two to three topics in the history of medicine (broadly construed) selected by its students from a menu of possible options. This unusual structure gives 'Matters of Life and Death' the flexibility required to ensure that it is always focused on subjects closely related to student interests and dissertation research. Possible topics range across the expertise of teaching and research staff in the Centre for the History of Medicine, and of our Associates in the wider University context.

How can we understand the social and natural world in which we live? Concepts such as ‘nature’, ‘environment’, ‘the body’, ‘the economy’, or ‘society’ help us to classify and order the endless phenoma in the material and natural world that we encounter every day. Yet while such concepts are vital, and seem fixed, transhistorical and objective, they emerged at particular moments in history, their meanings changed, and they were often deployed for particular purposes.

This module investigates the rise, changing meanings and purposes of such ordering concepts and the practices which go with them. It also explores how such concepts and practices reflected the social, economic, and political contexts in which they emerged and flourished.


Please note: Please note that only those modules for which there is sufficient demand will actually run.

How to apply

MA FAQs

Part-time study

Funding your studies

Qualification

Master of Arts (MA)

Duration

1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Contact

PGT Director, Dr Claudia Stein or course director Dr Laura Schwartz