There are natural synergies between the study of English Literature and History of Art, the study of art in words and the study of art in physical forms (painting, sculpture, architecture). If you take the September start for this degree, you have the option of taking your first term in Florence, studying the art of the Renaissance in the greatest Renaissance city.
In English Literature with History of Art you will be taught in small groups by energetic and enthusiastic staff, led by Oxford-trained academics with international research profiles in 19th- and 20th-century studies. Ideas developed in core seminars are taken forward in weekly small-group tutorials, where half a dozen students are encouraged to discuss and interpret specific passages of writing, or particular paintings or issues in the history of art, under the watchful guidance of their tutor.
Our students are expected to read widely and to develop strong lines of argument and personal responses to what they read and see, anchored in an informed understanding of the two disciplines and with reference to the contemporary critical debates that animate them.
The English side of the degree is structured around a combination of period study, thematic study, and modules inculcating theoretical and practical skills. Victorian literature modules cover prose from Dickens to Gaskell, and poetry from Browning to Hardy; twentieth-century literature topics range from Rhys, Hurston, Woolf, and Plath, to Hemingway, Forster, Larkin, and Beckett. Shakespeare is one special focus. Other earlier writers who are studied include Marlowe, Donne, Webster, Herbert, Milton, Dryden, Gay, Swift, Pope, Blake, Wordsworth, Austen, Keats, and Shelley. You can explore some of the modules on this website. Thematic study encourages students to analyse contextually based on sociological variations, gender, contemporary politics, and psychological influences. We encourage the understanding of contemporary literary and cultural theory while never losing sight of the values of liberal/aesthetic education.
History of Art is focused on the visual arts. The subject also touches on many other traditional humanities disciplines such as literature, history, religion, languages, classics, psychology, and philosophy. Students acquire skills of critical and historical analysis and the ability to evaluate evidence and present arguments fluently, both orally and in writing. Because of the combined degree, you will be able to see cross-overs and interactions between literature and art, particularly in relation to the Renaissance, Romanticism, and Modernism.
Our recent graduates have gone on to pursue careers in the media, creative writing, teaching, academia, business, and marketing.
Full details in the Curriculum Handbook