English Literature at St Mary’s offers students the chance to investigate all aspects of literature in depth, on our beautiful historic campus, in a friendly department where we value above all the ambitions and needs of the individual student.
- Emphasis on one-to-one tutoring and tailoring your degree to reflect your individual interests and needs.
- Scope to explore literature from a range of interdisciplinary perspectives.
- Opportunity for an immersive learning experience enabling you to explore and celebrate the University's literary and theatrical heritage by studying authors, genres and actors with physical connections to our campus and its locality.
Why study English Literature?
When you study literature you are not just reading and thinking about great books, you are also asking questions about society’s past and future, and ultimately interrogating your own past and future.
Our English team at St Mary’s boasts strong expertise in the interconnections between literary texts and their social, historical, political and national contexts. This is reflected in the modules that we offer, which allow you to interrogate, alongside the texts themselves, the intricate and fascinating cultural backdrops that are informing what we read. Alongside canonical works, you will have the opportunity to engage with underrepresented authors and unconventional literary forms, enabling you to broaden your understanding of the far-reaching meanings attached to the term ‘Literature’.
We place a unique emphasis on the relationship between literature and place. This way of studying English is brilliantly complemented by the surroundings of our campus, which are steeped in literary history. Our campus is located within the grounds of Strawberry Hill House, a historically vibrant hub of literary, artistic and theatrical activity. Once home to renowned gothic author Horace Walpole, the house hosted extravagant literary gatherings and private theatricals, and was designed to inspire Walpole’s own gothic writing. Studying English within these hugely inspiring surroundings makes for a fully immersive and geographically distinct learning experience, which is entirely unique to English at St Mary’s.
Why St Mary's?
With small class sizes, you will quickly get to know your tutors and fellow students and will be fully embraced as a member of the team’s close-knit and academically stimulating community, right from the moment you step foot in the door.
The range of option modules offered on the BA will enable you to tailor your course to your individual interests and passions.
Examples of optional modules include:
- Gothic Cultures 1750-1900
- Curating London
- Writing Conflict: the First World War
- London Theatre
- Contemporary Fiction
- Literature and the Unconscious
- Writing Gender and Identity in the Nineteenth-Century Novel
There are also opportunities to pursue modules and course activities oriented towards developing career aspirations in the Humanities and culture industries, ensuring that you leave university fully prepared for the world of work.
About the Foundation Year
Our four-year degree programmes (including a foundation year) provide an alternative route to undergraduate study at university if you do not have the grades to access higher education in the traditional way.
On successful completion of the Humanities Foundation Year pathway you will progress on to the English Literature undergraduate degree. You can also choose to study English Literature with a placement year of paid work experience.