MA in Literature and Culture


The MA in Literature & Culture in UCD School of English, Drama, Film and Creative Writing is our flagship MA programme in English-language literature and culture. Students work with leading international scholars and world-class teachers, who have expertise in a wide range of areas, from the literature of the middle ages to the modern and contemporary. The programme provides an intensive combination of taught courses and supervised research to develop students’ skills and confidence as scholars and critics of literature and its contexts. Current courses include seminars in 18th and 19th-Century literature and culture, Contemporary American Poetry, Modernism, World Literature, Social Network Analysis, and research methods. The School is the largest and most research-productive School in Ireland and has more than 40 expert teaching staff. It is ranked in the top 100 worldwide (QS World Rankings by Subject, 2018).

Course Content and Structure

The supervised dissertation gives you the unique opportunity to work closely on a topic of your choosing with published experts in your field of specialization. All students take the core module in Research Methods, and choose among modules in a variety of areas, including British, American and World Literature. Subject to demand, students may also be able to take courses in our parallel MA programmes in Irish Literature and Culture, and in Gender, Sexuality and Culture. Recent courses have included:

American Lyric: Document and Memoir
Memory Cultures
Feeling Modern: Thinking and Being in 18th and 19th-Century Britain
Social Network Analysis and Fiction
World-Systems, World-Literature: Mapping the Planet
Contemporary U.S. Genre Fiction: Intersection, Disruption, Protest
Concepts of Modernity

The MA in Literature & Culture provides the opportunity to deepen your knowledge of English-language literature and its contexts. The MA provides an intensive combination of taught course units and supervised research to develop our students' skills and confidence as scholars and critics of literature and its contexts. Our chief aim is to enable our students to develop as scholars, researchers, writers and critics in their chosen specialism, equipped with a range of critical skills and methodologies for understanding and analysing literature and culture across multiple historical, social and intellectual contexts.

On our MA programme, you will: 

  • Choose from a wide range of specialised modules.
  • Benefit from expert tuition in a supportive and open learning environment.
  • Develop your own research topic with one-to-one supervision from a member of our world-class staff.
  • Be part of a School with a long tradition of excellence and impact in literature that hosts academic scholars and writers-in-residence of international renown.
  • Be part of the School’s vibrant and welcoming postgraduate community, with weekly School research seminars, an active, dynamic English Graduate Society, and regular conferences, symposia and other events that our MA students are encouraged to get involved in.

On successful completion of the MA in Literature & Culture, students should:

  • Be adept readers, thinkers and writers, with advanced skills in detailed textual analysis and close reading;
  • Have a developed awareness of historical contexts, theoretical positions and the range of literary and/or cultural production appropriate to their chosen specialization;
  • Have an enhanced knowledge of literary and cultural analysis, including methodology, in their chosen disciplines and fields;
  • Be able to make connections across different time periods and cultures, and to identify key aesthetic/cultural/social movements and innovations in their chosen specialization;
  • Be able to articulate their knowledge, arguments and ideas clearly and effectively through essays, presentations and proposals;
  • Have mastered advanced techniques in the use of archival and digital resources;
  • Be effective independent researchers, who can identify a viable research topic and develop this into a research project.


MA in Literature & Culture teaching team:

Professor John Brannigan

Professor Danielle Clarke

Dr Lucy Cogan

Dr Luca Crispi

Professor Nick Daly

Dr Sharae Deckard

Dr Fionnuala Dillane

Dr Katherine Fama

Professor Porscha Fermanis

Professor Jane Grogan

Dr Clare Hayes-Brady

Dr Naomi McAreavey

Professor Frank McGuinness

Professor Gerardine Meaney

Dr Anne Mulhall

Dr Michelle O’Connell

Dr Niamh Pattwell

Associate Professor Emilie Pine

Dr Emma Radley

Dr Rebecca Stephenson

Dr Maria Stuart

Associate Professor Nerys Williams


More information and online applications HERE 

For further information on this programme, please contact the MA Coordinator Prof Nick Daly( Further information on the appliction process, please contact Deirdre Daly, the Graduate Administrator. (