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Comparative Literature (Literary Studies)

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Grounded in literature and literary theory, the one-year Master's Comparative Literature trains you to analyse cultural phenomena (both Western and non-Western) within an interdisciplinary theoretical framework and a globalised context.

UvA online Open House

This year, you won’t be able to attend any busy on-campus events with lots of people. But our online Open House is the perfect way to get to know UvA study programmes and university life from the comfort of your own home.

Every study programme has an Open House page with videos, FAQs and live events. On the main Open House website you can discover all our programmes,explore the city and campus, and get inspired during our theme weeks.

Comparative Literature in the broadest sense

The Master's programme in Comparative Literature is theoretical in character. It uses methods such as textual analysis, deconstruction and close reading in order to address a variety of issues including post/de-coloniality, global literacy, race and gender. This programme suits students who want to gain a better understanding of the dynamics between the literary and the political.

Why study Comparative Literature in Amsterdam?

The Comparative Literature programme at the University of Amsterdam offers you:

  • A world-class education: the UvA is ranked highest in the Netherlands and 59th overall in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2018;
  • Situated in the heart of Amsterdam, the programme draws inspiration from the lively literary culture in this international urban hub. You’ll benefit from our connections to and partnerships with publishers, theatres, poetry stages, museums, bookstores and much more.
  • The chance to study contemporary literature and theory in an interdisciplinary context, approaching literature from a perspective grounded in literary and cultural theory, encouraging you to think about film, visual art, performance and music in addition to literary texts. 
  • An examination of the role of literature in a globalised world and enables you to develop a comparative approach.
  • A passionate staff specialised in a wide range of topics, from political activism, nationalism and globalisation to the posthuman and post-colonialism.
  • Diverse cultural partners, including Stedelijk Museum, Perdu, De Balie, Goethe Institut and many more.

Student profile

As a student in the Master’s programme in Comparative Literature you will be expected to have the following knowledge, insight and skills:

  • You have an awareness of basic theoretical notions in critical theory, cultural studies, philosophy or literary theory. Bachelor's degrees in language and literature and in philosophy will in most cases provide that basis.
  • You are able to conduct research independently and know how to formulate research questions, collect material, apply theory, and write a thesis.
  • You are familiar with or interested in political and cultural questions and the role of literature in the world.
  • You are ready to immerse yourself in the vibrant cultural landscape in Amsterdam with its many different cultural offerings.
  • In class you contribute to an engaged (international) classroom by participating actively.

Degree certificate

Comparative Literature is an accredited degree programme of Literary Studies. After successful completion of this programme, you will receive a legally accredited Master’s degree in Literary Studies and the title Master of Arts (MA). 

Feiten & cijfers
Diploma MA Literary Studies
Vorm Voltijd , deeltijd
Studielast 60 EC, 12 maanden
Voertaal Engels
Start September
CROHO-code 60813