University of Leeds

University of Leeds

Critical and Cultural Theory

This programme takes a philosophical, theoretical and historical approach to cultural studies, exploring the work of cultural criticism, reception and production through new critical perspectives, interdisciplinary insights and a vast spectrum of applications and opportunities. We study the major traditions of cultural theory, including semiology, deconstruction, feminism, psychoanalysis, and Frankfurt School theories of the aesthetic, the media and technology. This training enables you to shape your thinking critically and develop your interests in a rigorously analytical context. These theoretical and historical perspectives allow us to tease out the critical charge embedded in the notion of culture itself, and the transformative potential of creative and critical work in the arts and humanities. Close reading and textuality are at the heart of the course, encouraging you to think critically about issues of modernity and postmodernity, the postcolonial, subjectivity and sexuality.

Entry requirements

A 2.1 Honours degree. IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component.

Course modules

Core modules: cultural theory; cultural history; essential research skills 1; essential research skills 2; cultural studies: dissertation. Optional modules include: Derrida and deconstruction; reading sexual difference; beyond the trench: collaborative projects on the history, remembrance and critical heritage of the first world war; capitalism-criticism-contemporary art; feminism and culture: theoretical perspectives; unfinished business: trauma, cultural memory and the holocaust; aesthetics and politics; critical and curatorial challenges in contemporary art: the documental exhibitions at Kassel 1992-2012; encountering things: art and entanglement in Anglo-Saxon England; the origins of postcolonial England; anthropology, art and representation; technology, media and critical literacy; humanity, animality and globality; individual directed study.

Assessment methods

Assessment methods will vary depending on the modules you choose. However, among others they may include essays, in-course assessment, group and individual presentations, poster presentations and portfolio or e-portfolio work.


Qualification Study mode Fee Course duration
MA Full-time £ 5,500 per Academic year (home fees) 12 months
MA Full-time £ 14,000 per Academic year (overseas fees) 12 months
MA Part-time £ 2,250 per Academic year (home fees) 24 months
MA Part-time £ 7,000 per Academic year (overseas fees) 24 months

Campus details

Campus name Town Postcode Region Main campus Campus Partner
University of Leeds Leeds LS2 9JT Yorkshire and the Humber

Key information

Postgraduate and Research Secretary
Telephone number: 
0113 343 5274