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English - Modernities Romanticism Modernism & Post-Modernism

This MA introduces students to the advanced study of American and British literature and film, from the eighteenth century to the present day. Under the guidance of leading scholars in their fields, students will encounter some of the most influential contemporary critical and theoretical models currently being applied to the notions of modernity and modernisation, and apply the ideas raised by these theories to a rich variety of literary and filmic texts from such movements as Romanticism, Modernism, and Postmodernism. Writers and directors who are studied range from canonical Romantics and modernists, including P.B. and Mary Shelley, Virginia Woolf, and Samuel Beckett, to recent and contemporary novelists and filmmakers such as Thomas Pynchon and Stanley Kubrick. Among theorists of modernity, students can expect to examine Freud, Nietzsche, de Beauvoir, Habermas, and Jameson, and to explore the relevance of their ideas to a deeper understating and greater appreciation of the literature and film in this period.

Unique Aspects of the Course
This course is the only MA in English offered by an Irish university that provides an advanced and coherent introduction to a selection of literary, theoretical, and filmic works from the 1780s to the present day.

Entry requirements

To be considered for admission to an MA programme within the School of English, an applicant will normally possess a primary degree result of Second Class Honours Grade 1 (2H1) level or higher or equivalent qualification in English or a cognate subject. All candidates must satisfy a Selection Committee who may request applicants to provide letters of reference.

For North American students a cumulative GPA of at least 3.3 is expected.

All applicants whose first language is not English are required to sit either an IELTS test or a recognised equivalent test. The minimum requirement is an IELTS score of 6.5, with no individual section lower than 5.5. Further information on English language requirements can be found at

The selection committee for the MA in the Department of English, University College Cork also attaches strong importance to the additional supplementary online questions and the online 500 word personal statement for the MA in English (Modernities: Romanticism, Modernism and Post-Modernism.


1 year, full time (12 months)

Number of credits

90 Credits

Careers or further progression

This course will provide you with an advanced understanding of three important periods in literary history and knowledge of the theoretical tools required fully to understand those periods. It will also equip you with a range of research skills designed to prepare you to present academic research in a variety of forms to a professional standard.

Further enquiries

Professor Graham Allen
P: + 353 21 4902775

Subjects taught

The MA in English (Modernities) consists of two parts: a taught course and a dissertation.

Programme Requirements

Students take 90 credits as follows:

Part I (50 credits)
EN6009 Contemporary Literary Research: Skills, Methods and Strategies (10 credits)
EN6028 Theories of Modernity (10 credits)


30 credits from:

30 credits from:

EN6025 Literary and Cultural Modernisms (10 credits)
EN6026 Postmodernism in Literature and Film (10 credits)
EN6027 Romanticism and Modernity (10 credits)
EN6029 American Modernities (10 credits)
FX6007 American Cinema (10 credits)

Part II (40 credits)
EN6017 Dissertation in English (40 credits)

Note: Subject to the approval of the MA programme co-ordinators, students may substitute one 10-credit module with one of the following 10-credit modules: EN6047, EN6048, EN6049, EN6050, EN6051, EN6052, EN6053, EN6054, EN6055


Course Practicalities.
The course involves a combination of seminars, consultation, presentations and directed study as well as associated reading. You will carry out independent research for your dissertation in close consultation with your supervisor.

Who Teaches This Course
The members of academic staff teaching on this course are actively engaged in research and have national and international reputations in a range of relevant fields. Details of their areas of expertise and a list of publications can be accessed here:

Professor Graham Allen (literary and cultural theory and romanticism)

Professor Alex Davis (literary modernism, twentieth- and twenty-first-century Irish, British, and American poetry)

Dr Anne Etienne (twentieth-century British drama and theatre censorship)

Dr Alan Gibbs (American literature, trauma narratives, and narrative theory)

Dr Jools Gilson (theatre and performance studies)

Dr Lee Jenkins (American Literature, American Studies and transnationalism, literary modernism, Caribbean poetry, and contemporary black British poetry)

Dr Heather Laird (Postcolonialism and Irish studies)

Dr Barry Monahan (film studies and Irish cinema)

Dr Clíona Ó Gallchoir (Irish women's writing, Irish and British eighteenth- and nineteenth-century writing, the novel in Ireland, post-colonial writing and children's literature)

Dr. Gwenda Young (film studies, classical Hollywood cinema, silent cinema, and ethnicity in American cinema)

Assessment method

Continuous assessment including written assignments, in-class assignments, seminar participation and presentation, research journal, literature and IT review and research presentation. You will have four written assessments (2000 words each) in the Modernities module and seminar participation.

Application date

Applications for 2017-18 intake are now open.

While UCC operates a rounds system for Postgraduate Taught courses (detailed below) we would advise you to apply as soon as possible.

Deadline for receipt of Applications: Offers will be made:

For all completed applications received by January 16th 2017 Offers will be made by January 30th 2017

For all completed applications received by March 1st 2017 Offers will be made by March 15th 2017

For all completed applications received by May 1st 2017 Offers will be made by May 15th 2017

For all completed applications received by July 3rd 2017 Offers will be made by July 17th 2017

Late applications may be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis for any courses that have remaining capacity for places.

Non-EU Applicants:

Please visit the following page for further information for Non EU applicants

Course fee

2017/2017 Irish/EU Fee: €6,000

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake: 11 September 2017

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!