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Birkbeck, University of London: Contemporary History and Politics

Institution Birkbeck, University of London View institution profile
Department School of Historical Studies
Web http://www.bbk.ac.uk/
Telephone 0203 907 0700
Study type Taught

Summary

Our MA Contemporary History and Politics lays a strong emphasis on the critical analysis of the recent past, giving you specialist knowledge of particular regions and themes. You will study the complex interplay between national, international and global political, social and historical forces that have produced the contemporary world, and develop the approaches, techniques and skills of the professional historian.

The introductory compulsory module explores the methodological, conceptual and theoretical background necessary for historical study at postgraduate level. It also considers specific topics and questions in contemporary history and politics. You will undertake training in research skills to prepare you for researching and writing a dissertation on the subject that most interests you.

You can choose from an impressive range of option modules covering a wide sweep of political ideas and systems, historical periods and geographical places. Topics include the post-war reconstruction of Europe, Islam and the politics of fundamentalism, American global supremacy and foreign policy, national and transnational structures for ensuring global order and justice, and the rise of China as a superpower, among others.

This course is part of our new Birkbeck Flexible Master’s UK, which gives you the choice of how you want to study - on campus, online or via flexible learning, which combines both.

Highlights

  • Birkbeck was ranked in the top eight universities in the UK for its History research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.

  • Our research is unique in its range across geographical and chronological boundaries. We are the only university in London to include historians, classicists and archaeologists in the same team of academics who investigate every period from prehistory to the early twenty-first century. We see the study of the past as crucial for our understanding of present-day society, culture and politics.

  • All Master’s students are eligible to apply for our prestigious Eric Hobsbawm Scholarships, subject to availability. One of the most influential historians of the twentieth century, Eric Hobsbawm taught at Birkbeck for over five decades and embodied what is central to our teaching and research: a continued commitment to critical enquiry and public engagement.

  • If you are taking this course part time, you may be eligible for a Bonnart Trust Master’s Studentship which will cover the cost of your tuition fees. You must have received an offer of a place on the course by 31 May 2023 to apply.

  • We are at the heart of academic London with access to unparalleled research resources. Situated very close by are: the Institute of Classical Studies, with its library, training facilities and seminars; the British Museum, with its extensive collection of classical antiquities; and the British Library, the largest national library in the world.

Careers and employability

Graduates can pursue career paths in education, journalism, research, and museums and archiving. Possible professions include:

  • teacher

  • journalist

  • archivist

  • museum education officer

  • academic librarian

  • politician’s assistant

  • Civil Service administrator.

We offer a comprehensive careers service - Careers and Enterprise - your career partner during your time at Birkbeck and beyond. At every stage of your career journey, we empower you to take ownership of your future, helping you to make the connection between your experience, education and future ambitions.

MA

Birkbeck, part of the University of London, offers nearly 300 taught and research postgraduate programmes across arts and humanities, business and economics, law, science and social science. As an evening teaching specialist, Birkbeck offers its taught postgraduate courses between 6-9pm, with some courses available through distance learning. As with undergraduate courses, postgraduates can study full-time or part-time.

Home to 44 research and specialist institutes, Birkbeck is the sixth largest provider of taught postgrad courses for UK and EU students - some 44% of its 11,000-plus students are on postgrad programmes. Around 90% of its academics are active in research, and …

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