M.A. Cultures of the Global South / Culturas del Sur Global / Cultures du Sud global

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Admission requirements and qualification goals of the MA degree scheme

This MA degree scheme “Cultures of the Global South” is open to students with a BA degree or an equivalent university degree either in a literary or cultural studies or an affine social science discipline who desire to gain a further qualification at master’s level in an intercultural, interdisciplinary and research-oriented degree scheme with regional foci concentrated on the Global South.

The formal prerequisites include competence in at least two of the languages of teaching used in the degree scheme (English, French, and Spanish). Students are required to have competencies in English at C1 level at the moment of application and to have acquired B2 in Spanish or French after two semesters at the latest, or Spanish or French at C1 level at the moment of application and to have acquired B2 in English after two semesters at the latest. In order to demonstrate their aptitude for admission to the degree scheme, the application must be accompanied by a project description related to the area of Global South studies.

Students in the Master of Arts degree in “Cultures of the Global South” graduate equipped with a solid knowledge of the literary and cultural histories of the so-called “Global South” and with a thorough familiarity with the specific historical, socio-political and theoretical complexes and the relevant literary, cultural and media studies disciplines alongside ethnology, education sciences and other neighbouring humanities disciplines pertaining to this cultural zone. On the basis of the cultural, historical and theoretical competencies acquired during their study in the MA scheme, they are capable of describing and synthesizing, in a reflective and theoretically-informed manner, the salient aspects of a range of issues including colonization, migration, transculturation, globalisation and geopolitical integration. Further, they are able to explore new areas of study and integrating these areas into existing scholarly frameworks. Finally, they are skilled in reflecting upon the underlying assumptions of their own knowledge and on the conditions of production of that knowledge.

Alongside the acquisition of a broad range of academic competencies pertaining to the Global South, the degree scheme also offers a specific research orientation. Graduates are familiar with current advances in the field and are equipped for independent research in the area of Global South Studies. The introductory theoretical module “Theories of the Global South” is taken together by all students in the scheme and provides, across the entirety of the cultures encompassed by the Global South, a common theoretical and methodological framework. On the basis of this foundation, students can acquire expertise with a clear regional focus-profile. To such foci are currently available:
- Focus-profile Latin American Studies
- Focus-profile African Studies

A regional focus-profile (with corresponding certification) is awarded on the basis of the completion of three modules related to the region in question (including the completion of a semester abroad in the relevant region). The degree can also be completed, however, without a regional focus-profile. This broader focus may then include units of study, and the corresponding assessment, relating to other regions of the Global South than those selected as profile region.

The degree scheme also includes a project module whereby students acquire relevant key qualifications on the basis of problem based learning in project, for example related to the areas of the media, theatre, or curatorship. These components of the degree aim to reinforce students’ own initiative with regard to project- and team-oriented learning. Alternatively, the project module may include a professionally oriented internship.

The MA degree scheme introduces students to an inherently transnational and transcultural research area, and for this reason, a semester abroad is mandatory. The semester abroad takes place within the structure of a “mobility window” that permits students to complement their interdisciplinary profile at one of our partner universities. For students who intend to embark upon a research career, the MA thesis can be carried out within the framework of a “fast-track” option in which the MA research figures as an integral part of the doctoral thesis: the MA thesis can, for example, take the form of a draft of the introductory chapter, a sample chapter or a literature review for the subsequent doctoral research.