If politics is ‘the art of the possible’ and literature is ‘the art of persuasion’ then this joint degree programme will give you a thorough understanding of the ways in which our society works.
On this programme you will gain a thorough understanding of the theoretical foundations of modern politics and the methods for studying political assent and conflict, at home and abroad. You will have the opportunity to choose from a wide range of specialist core and optional modules, which cover topical issues such as the politics of the welfare state, European political integration, and political thinking. In certain modules, you will have the opportunity to take part in United Nations and Middle East simulations and gain an insight into the political process. You can also take part in other activities that are related to the subject. For example, you can contribute to the Department of Politics and International Relations' weekly politics radio show and learn other useful skills such as presenting and audio editing.
Your study of English Literature will give you the chance to study many similar issues from a different perspective: we have experts in contemporary literature from America, the Caribbean and across the British Isles, with research expertise in the study of minority identities and the literature of global justice. You will also have the chance to study more of the authors and genres that you already know (from tragedy to Gothic, from Shakespeare and Dickens to Plath and Beckett). But it will also introduce you to aspects of literary studies that you may not know so well, from children’s literature to publishing studies and the history of the book. Everyone in our department, from new lecturers to professors, teaches at every level of the degree: this gives you the benefit of our expertise and makes you part of the conversation about our research and its impact outside the classroom.
We place a strong emphasis on small-group learning within a friendly and supportive environment. In your first and second years, you will have a mix of lectures (which can be quite large) and seminars (which will never have more than 17 people). We believe that the study of English Literature and International Relations is a discursive process in which we learn by sharing our ideas, and so we are determined to keep class sizes small enough so that everyone feels able to contribute. We provide detailed and thorough feedback on your written work within 15 working days: this is crucial to your development as someone whose career will involve the writing of clear and persuasive documents.
Study abroad - In your second year, it may be possible for you to spend a term studying abroad at one of our partner institutions in the USA, Canada or Australia. Within Europe, we have exchange programmes with the University of Heidelberg in Germany, with Charles University in Prague, and with the University of Salamanca and the University of Valladolid in Spain. This is a great opportunity to continue your study of English literature while immersing yourself in a different culture and enhancing your language skills.