M.Phil. English Literature or Master of Philosophy in English Literature is a postgraduate English course. English literature is the literature written in the English language, including literature composed in English by writers not necessarily from England; for example, Robert Burns was Scottish, James Joyce was Irish, Joseph Conrad was born in Poland, Dylan Thomas was Welsh, Edgar Allan Poe was American, V.S. Naipaul was born in Trinidad, and Vladimir Nabokov was Russian, but all are considered important writers in the history of English literature. In other words, English literature is as diverse as the varieties and dialects of English spoken around the world. In academia, the term often labels departments and programmes practising English studies in secondary and tertiary educational systems. Despite the variety of authors of English literature, the works of William Shakespeare remain paramount throughout the English-speaking world. M.Phil. (English Literature) is an important and job orienting one throughout India.
M.Phil. English Literature Eligibility
Candidate’s with a minimum of 55% marks in M.A. (English) examination or an equivalent examination of another University shall be eligible, to apply for the course.
For admission the candidates shall be required to take a written test followed by an interview.
M.Phil. English Literature Syllabus
Syllabus of English Literature as prescribed by various Universities and Colleges.
Subjects of Study
Research Methodology (Compulsory): In this orientation programme, spread over one week (ten hours of instruction), students will be trained in the formal aspects of research. It will include an introduction to research methods, selection and phrasing of the topic, collection and ordering of material, and giving a structured form to the same. There will be no examination for this component.
Course MP 1: Introduction to Literary Theory (Compulsory): The objective of this course is to equip students with essential tools of literary research. It proposes to introduce them to the prime, thematic concerns of contemporary literary theory and the basic postulates of different theoretical positions regarding literary and cultural studies.
Any one of the following courses:
Course MP 2: Renaissance Studies: This course aims at examining major issues and themes of Renaissance literature. Students will be required to study the works of writers of the period, their reception in their own age, as well as their treatment by twentieth-century critical theorists.
Course MP 3: Life, Literature and Thought in the Eighteenth Century: This course will offer readings in literary texts written. in the period 1660-1789. It will examine how literary writing positions itself with respect to the larger events of eastern Europe's encounter with modernity.
Course MP 4: Texts of Modernism: This course will introduce students to the various aspects of the movement called Modernism. It will examine different texts of the movement, preferably from diverse genres and different European languages.
Course MP 5: Continental Fiction: The objective of this course is to familiarize students with major works of Continental fiction in English translation and their influence on English literature. The course may be structured in terms of period, theme, or a national literature.
Course MP 6: Indian Writing in English: The course will familiarize students with the growth of Indian writing in English in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and the critical tools required for its analysis. The course may be structured in terms of genre, period, or theme.
Course MP 7: Theory and Practice of Translation: This course will examine the theoretical and practical aspects of translation. Translation shall also be studied as an essential component of comparative literature. The choice of texts and languages will depend on the resource persons offering the course.
Course MP 8: Seminar I: Conceived as a flexible course, Seminar will offer a platform where teachers may plan courses based on their specific academic interests. The course may be structured in terms of genre, period or theme, or be devoted to the study of a single author or a literary theorist.
Sem. II (Any two of the following Courses)
Course MP 9: Shakespeare: The course will be devoted to an intensive study of Shakespeare's works with an emphasis upon their treatment with regard to sources and tradition. The course is designed to, explore the relationship of the imaginative achievement of his writings to the theatrical, literary, social, and intellectual world in which they were produced.
Course MP 10: Life, Literature and Thought in the Nineteenth Century: This course will be devoted to British poetry and prose in the nineteenth century. Special attention will be paid to the role of aesthetic thought in social, political, and cultural spheres.
Course MP 11: Twentieth Century Fiction / Poetry: This course will familiarize students with the major trends, forms and experiments with language and other technical innovations of twentieth century fiction / poetry. The course may be structured in terms of period, theme, or a national literature.
Course MP 12: Australian /Canadian Literature: In the past few decades there has been a significant emergence of literatures in English other than those of Britain and the United States. This course will examine the questions of tradition and modernity in Australian / Canadian Literature, and familiarize students with the related developments in critical theory. Only one of the courses, i.e. the literature of either Canada or Australia, shall be offered at one time.
Course MP 13: Twentieth Century American Literature: The objective of this course is to familiarize the student with the literature of the United States of America of the twentieth century. The course may be structured in terms of genre, movement or theme.
Course MP 14: Indian Literatures in English Translation: This course will be devoted to the study of literatures written in diverse Indian languages. Only such texts will be selected for study as have been translated into English. The study may be made on the basis of genre, period, or theme.
Course MP 15: English in India: This course will deal with issues like historical background of English in India, the institutionalisation of English Studies, the problems of teaching English language and literature, and the debates regarding the canon and canonical texts.
Course MP 16: Colonial Discourse Theory: This course will examine the critical theories needed for the study of postcolonial literature. The claims of Western criticism for universalism, the question of cultural difference in literary texts, nationalism and hybridity, are some of the issues to be studied.
Course MP 17: Readings in Theory: This course proposes to impart intensive training in literary theory. It will equip the student with a deeper understanding of the philosophy, sociology and politics of literary and cultural production.
Course MP 18: Semiotics: This course introduces the student to semiotics as a model for understanding the notion of representation in the construction of meaning, by positioning the concept of "meaning" within an historical, cultural and social context.
Course MP 19: Texts of Popular Culture: This course will focus on the theories of culture as well as analyses of texts. The texts chosen in this course may be literary (children's literature, science fiction, crime thrillers, travelogues and romances) or extra-literary (music, films, television. advertisement and other forms of the mass media).
Course MP 20: Seminar II: Conceived as a flexible course, seminar will offer a platform where teachers may plan courses based on their specific academic interests. The course may be structured in terms of genre, period or theme, or be devoted to the study of a single author or a literary theorist.
The student shall write a dissertation under the supervision of a faculty member of the Department of English and Modern European Languages, and submit it at the end of the semester. He / she shall present a synopsis of the proposed dissertation, which will be considered by the Research Committee.
In lieu of a dissertation, a student may be allowed to undertake the translation of a literary text not translated earlier and present it along with a critical introduction and necessary notes. The translation should be of publishable quality.
Students who have the ability to organise ideas and present them coherently with a considerable degree of sophistication in keeping with the norms of scholarly research and writing are the most suitable ones.
Second, who have good knowledge of English language and literature and want to have research work in the subject also can go for this course.
Third, who have planned of obtaining Ph.D. degree in English Literature will have to go through this course first; so they also can go for this course.
How is M.Phil. English Literature Course Beneficial?
M.Phil. degree is beneficial for them as they can get jobs as proofreaders, Copy Editors, Copy writers and writer in the marketing department (e.g. writing pamphlets or brochures for social service firms like PETA) etc.
Other benefit is that students can also opt for research work abroad. But to get jobs abroad, work experience is a must.
Apart from teaching field, postgraduates of English Literature can start a career as consultants or they can join with publishing houses. With experience, candidates can get jobs with national as well as international magazines such as Vogue, National Geographic Magazine etc. Therefore it multi-beneficial for them.