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MA Contemporary European Philosophy

MA in Contemporary European Philosophy

For students interested in Contemporary European philosophy (also known as "Continental" philosophy), University College Dublin is reckoned to be one of the top universities in the English speaking world. 

This programme draws on the three main specialisations of the relevant faculty. These are:

  • German Idealism and Post-Kantian Philosophy
  • Phenomenology
  • Critical Theory

Topics treated in the modules include transcendental and absolute idealism and subjectivity, intentionality and being in the world, embodiment and otherness, critique of ideology, autonomy and recognition, and feminism and gender theory.

Programme Structure

The programme may be taken in one year (full-time) or two years (part-time). Over either timespan, you must take six modules: four from the list of Core Modules and the remaining two from the rest of those on offer. Here are the descriptions of all the MA modules.

Autumn Semester core modules:

  • PHIL41280 Feminist & Gender Theory
  • PHIL41320 Topics in Continental Philosophy
  • PHIL41810 Critique & Destruction
  • PHIL41840 Invention of the Modern Self

Spring Semester core modules:

  • PHIL40250 Merleau Ponty
  • PHIL40840 Autonomy as a Philosophical Problem
  • PHIL41330 Philosophy of Time

Option Modules (2):


  • PHIL40410 Philosophy & Literature
  • PHIL41280 Feminist & Gender Theory
  • PHIL41570 Problems from Kant
  • PHIL41590 Early Modern Philosophy of Language
  • PHIL41810 Critique & Destruction


  • PHIL40840 Autonomy as a Philosophical Problem
  • PHIL41330 Philosophy of Time
  • PHIL41510 Ethics in Public Life

In addition, students must write a dissertation of 12,000-15,000 words by mid-August. It is expected that students will choose a topic from contemporary European philosophy. Students are encouraged to discuss possible topics with their lecturers as soon as possible.

For academic enquiries, please contact the Programme Director, Assoc Prof Joseph Cohen.

To check your eligibility, please refer to the admissions page.

All administrative enquiries should be sent to the School Manager.


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Gillian Johnston

School Manager and Graduate Administrator

UCD School of Philosophy
Newman Building
University College Dublin
Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland

UCD School of Philosophy

Fifth Floor – Room D501, Newman Building, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 8186 | E: philosophy@ucd.ie | Location Map(opens in a new window)