MA (International Contemporary Literatures and Media)—
full-time and part-time

College of Arts, Social Sciences, & Celtic Studies

Course overview

This is a multidisciplinary and comparative MA programme designed for students with an interest in contemporary literatures and media. It aims to familiarise students with movements, authors, texts and themes of international contemporary literature. It broadens their intellectual horizons and provides them with the skills for research and critical analysis.


Students will be prepared for careers in media, arts administration, teaching, translation, and international marketing and communications.


The course provides excellent preparation for students interested in pursuing a PhD in this area. 

Key facts

Entry requirements

Second Class Honours NQAI Level 8 degree or equivalent in any discipline with a strong literature or media component.

Duration: 1 year, full-time
2 years, part-time

Next start date: September 2014

ECTS weighting: 90

Average intake: 15

Closing date: You are advised to apply early, which may result in an early offer; see the offer round dates

Mode of study: Taught

Course outline

The late 20th century saw fundamental cultural changes brought about by factors such as globalisation, the end of the Cold War, and technological and communicative innovations, and these changes are intensely reflected in literature and media. The course programme includes the study of seminal texts, films and other media by international authors and artists mostly from the 1960s to post-modernism and beyond. Non-English texts will be read in translation.

Core modules:

  • The Arts of Reading—about debates in world literature and theoretical approaches in modern literary and cultural studies.
  • Self-Referentiality in Post-modern Media—how do media reflect on other media, for example how is the book represented in films or paintings?
  • From Division to Unification: Literary Texts in their Political Contexts—how is the post-war division of Europe reflected in literature and media?
  • Contemporary Literary Genres—about trends in genres such as Didactic Fiction, Holocaust Literature, travel writing, fan fiction, etc.

Applications and selections

Applications are made online via The Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). Relevant PAC application code(s) above.

Who teaches this course?

Prof. Paolo Bartoloni, PhD
Deirdre Byrnes, PhD
Catherine Emerson, PhD
Tina-Karen Pusse, DPhil (co-ordinator)
Kate Quinn, PhD
Prof. Bill Richardson, PhD
Prof. Hans-Walter Schmidt-Hannisa, DPhil (co-ordinator)
Michael Shields, MA

(and others)

Requirements and assessment

Students have to take a total of six modules (10 ECTS each), four are obligatory and two are optional. Assessment of modules is by written exam or take-home-essay. Students also have to write a minor dissertation of circa 15,000 words (30 ECTS).

Find out more

Prof Hans-Walter Schmidt-Hannisa
E h.schmidthannisa@nuigalway.ie
T +353 91 492 239

PAC code

GYA88, full-time
GYA89, part-time

Fees for this course

EU (Total): €6,015 p.a. 2014/15
 - Tuition: €5,791 p.a. 2014/15
 - Student levy: €224 p.a. 2014/15
Non-EU (Total): €13,250 p.a. 2014/15

M.A. EU Full time programme:  €6,015

M.A. EU Part time programme:  €3,065 p.a.

Current students

Colm Whelan
Colm Whelan

"MA ICLM was a wonderful experience for me: it helped me to extend my theoretical understanding of literary texts and other modern media along with expanding my understanding of recent European cultural history. I really enjoyed getting to know the lecturers in the intimate environment and was happy to meet other like minded people and share the experience and the challenges. I would highly recommend this course to anyone with an interest in literature, film, cultural studies, media or languages. It has helped me to open up a number of opportunities and a desire for further studies."

Past students

Fintan Enright
Fintan Enright

MA graduate

"The MA (International Contemporary Literatures and Media) was highly enjoyable and interesting. It opened my eyes to many ideas and aspects of study of which I previously had no knowledge. It was well balanced between theory and hands-on study of literature. The course opened up my studies to many new and intriguing avenues of learning, which I had never come across before, but which I am now pursuing with great interest. It has given me a new perspective on the function of literature, its history and social importance."