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Popular Literature

This course offers an opportunity for the advanced study of popular literature. In recent years a body of theoretical and cultural historical material has developed that attempts to define what 'the popular' means now, and what it has meant historically. At the same time texts that do not seem to belong to traditional canons increasingly attract critical attention, and have come to be taught at university level alongside more canonical texts. In this light the course will cover such popular genres as adventure fiction, children's literature, horror, detective fiction, romance, pornography and science fiction, as well as offering an advanced introduction to such topics as the bestseller, genre theory, print culture and readership.

The course comprises two elements:
1. A core course meeting twice a week for 2 hours over 2 terms;
. Option courses meeting once a week for 2 hours - students take one per term;

This creates a total of 6 contact hours per week. Students also expected to spend a substantial amount of time in library research.

Entry requirements

Entry to this course is very competitive. Applicants are expected to have a good honors degree (at least of upper second class standard) or an equivalent qualification. We also require a 3,000 word academic writing sample.


1 year full-time

Further enquiries

Course Email:

Assessment method

Assessment is by a combination of five essays of varying lengths and a 15,000 word dissertation to be supervised by a member of staff.

Application date

Closing Date 31st March 2018, but we will consider late applications on a case-by-case basis until June 2018.

Please note that applications will not be considered until they are complete, and all references, transcripts and the writing sample are uploaded. It is the responsibility of the applicant to communicate with referees in order to make sure that this process is successfully completed.

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake:September 2018

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