M.A. English or Master of Arts in English is a postgraduate academic degree. English literature includes comprehensive study of both ancient and modern English literature comprising poetry, prose and fiction. The literature is written in the English language not only by English writers from England but also from the other country writers, for example, Robert Burns was Scottish, James Joyce was Irish, Joseph Conrad was Polish, Dylan Thomas was Welsh, Edgar Allan Poe was American, J. R. R. Tolkien was born in the Orange Free State, V.S. Naipaul was born in Trinidad, and Vladimir Nabokov was Russian, but all are considered important writers in the history of English literature. The course also includes thorough study of Indian Writings in English from its very early times to the contemporary ones. The duration of the course is two years and the syllabi are divided into four semesters.
M.A. English Eligibility
The basic eligibility criterion for pursuing M.A. (English) degree is graduation with English as one of the subjects from any of the recognised university / college of the country.
Some of the very reputed universities and institutes demand a minimum of 50% marks in graduation as qualifying criteria to secure admission in this course and also conduct entrance examination to get admission to their M.A. (English) degree course. Selection to the degree course in these colleges is based on marks secured in the final merit i.e. total marks aggregated in the final exams of graduation and the entrance exam.
M.A. English Syllabus
The below mentioned syllabus is provided by the Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra effective from the Academic session 2011-12.
Subjects of Study
Literature in English: 1550-1660 (Part-I)
Literature in English: 1660-1798 (Part-I)
Literature in English: 1798-1914 (Part-I)
Literature in English: 1914-2000 (Part-I)
Study of a Genre (Option-i) Fiction(Part-I)
Study of a Genre (Option-ii) Drama(Part-I)
Study of a Genre (Option-iii) Poetry(Part-I)
Literature in English: 1550-1660 (Part-II)
Literature in English: 1660-1798 (Part-II)
Literature in English: 1798-1914 (Part-II)
Literature in English: 1914-2000 (Part-II)
Study of a Genre (Option-i) Fiction(Part- II)
Study of a Genre (Option-ii) Drama(Part- II)
Study of a Genre (Option-iii) Poetry(Part - II)
Critical Theory (Part-I)
American Literature (Part-I)
Indian Writing in English (Part-I)
(Opt.i) Colonial and Post-Colonial Studies (Part-I) (Opt.ii) English Language (Part-I)
(Opt.i) Literature and Gender (Part-I) (Opt.ii) Literature and Philosophy (Part-I) (Opt.iii) New Literatures (Part-I)
Critical Theory (Part-II)
American Literature (Part-II)
Indian Writing in English (Part-II)
(Opt.i) Colonial and Post-Colonial Studies (Part-II) (Opt.ii) English Language (Part-II)
(Opt.i) Literature and Gender (Part-II) (Opt.ii) Literature and Philosophy (Part-II) (Opt.iii) New Literatures (Part-II)
Candidates who want to know about English literature, tradition and culture, etc. are most appropriate for it.
Those who want to become teacher, lecturer and translator also can go for this course.
Candidates having good teaching aptitudes and other related skills also are suitable for the course.
How is M.A. English Course Beneficial?
Acquiring M.A. (English) degree with at least 50% marks makes a student eligible for the post of a lecturer in different colleges; though for a position in Government colleges, one has to clear the UGC-NET examination or some state level qualifying exams, along with the Master’s degree.
M.A. (English) degree serves as a basis for further higher studies and research in this field such as Ph.D. and M.Phil. Degree in English.
The course prepares students for teaching and for creative English writing.
M.A. (English) degree holder can build career in English journalism also.