MA Black Humanities

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Faculty Faculty of Arts
Awards available MA
Programme length One year full-time;
two years part-time
Location of programme Clifton campus
Part-time study available Yes
Part-time study requires some daytime weekday attendance (usually 1-2 days).
Start date September 2022

Programme overview

This unique interdisciplinary MA offers you the opportunity to study Black Humanities through critical engagement with the histories, philosophies, languages, literatures and arts relating to local and global African and African Diaspora communities.

Based on cutting-edge research and dialogue with arts and community activists, you will study debates about race, ethics, and representation. Together we will ask how the arts and humanities reflect and generate changes in society. Through your reading and seminar discussions, you will be encouraged to tackle urgent questions concerning racism, anti-racism, and social justice. These will be discussed via historical and contemporary contexts in Africa, the Caribbean and the Americas, and Europe. Over the course of the programme, you will also learn more about Black experiences in Britain, and specifically in Bristol, a city deeply entangled with the transatlantic plantation economy and site of an ongoing, complex, legacy of memory work.

The University of Bristol is home to the Centre for Black Humanities, an international hub for research that informs our teaching, ensuring the syllabus is always underpinned by the latest knowledge. Our members are engaged in pioneering research on topics including UK hip-hop, History and Memory of Enslavement, African literary activism and the Lusophone Atlantic (follow @BrisBlackHums for more information on the Centre’s activities). We place critical importance on being part of an international and multilingual community. This will be reflected in our programme of external speakers and opportunities to engage with Bristol's cutting edge cultural scene.

Fees for 2022/23

We charge an annual tuition fee. Fees for 2022/23 are as follows:

UK: full-time
UK: part-time
Overseas: full-time

Following the recent changes to fee assessment regulation, Channel Islands and Isle of Man students will no longer be charged a separate tuition fee. From the 2021/22 academic year they will be charged the same fees as Home students.

Fees are subject to an annual review. For programmes that last longer than one year, please budget for up to a five per cent increase in fees each year. Find out more about tuition fees.

Alumni discount

University of Bristol students and graduates can benefit from a 25% reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate study. Check your eligibility for an alumni discount.

Funding for 2022/23

There are two scholarships available for teachers wishing to take this MA. These scholarships cover the course fees. Visit Bristol Black Scholarship programme for more information. University of Bristol students and alumni receive 10% reduction in fees. For further information on postgraduate loans and funding, visit the Postgraduate Funding pages on the University website.


Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students.

Programme structure

Your two core units will combine theoretical readings and situated historical case studies, alongside practice-based sessions with external speakers, designed to encourage reflection on lived experience in the present. These sessions will vary from year to year and are likely to include: writers, journalists, festival producers, community activists, teachers and archivists.

In addition to our core units, you will select three options from a diverse list, enabling you to build your own pathway through the programme. These options (subject to staff availability) include: Bristol and Slavery, Pan-Africanism, Literatures of Enslavement, Postcolonial Environments, Theorizing Violence, Museum and Heritage: Critical Perspectives, Decolonizing Literature and Literary Studies. You will also undertake a discipline-specific Research Methods course and a Dissertation (an independent research project).

Students are invited to attend the international seminar and events programme coordinated by the Centre for Black Humanities, which directly connect to themes covered in the MA programme.  

Visit our programme catalogue for full details of the structure and unit content for our MA in Black Humanities. Please note there are scholarships available for teachers wishing to take this course. Visit the Bristol Black Scholarship pages for more information. 

Entry requirements

To be considered for admission to this programme, applicants are required to hold/achieve a minimum of an upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent) in any discipline. Non-traditional qualifications/routes will also be considered.

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you need to meet this profile level:
Profile C
Further information about English language requirements and profile levels.

Admissions statement

Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Admissions statement


Students who complete this MA will have acquired transferable skills including critical thinking, ethical sensitivity, and the ability to argue persuasively. This equips graduates for research degrees such as a PhD as well as careers in teaching, campaigning, arts administration, publishing, law, the civil service, media and journalism. These could be in cultural or heritage industries, government and non - government organisations, or international organisations.

Expected application closure date

Applications for 2022 have now closed and will reopen for 2023 entry in October 2022.

Request more information

Find out more about studying with us or request a prospectus.

Get in touch

Contact details

Enquiries Team Phone: +44 (0) 117 394 1649 Email:

School website: School of Modern Languages
Department website: Centre for Black Humanities

International students

Find out more about becoming a student at Bristol, applying for a visa and the support we offer to international students.

REF 2021 results

The University of Bristol is ranked fifth for research in the UK (Times Higher Education), with 94% of our research assessed as world-leading or internationally excellent.

Full REF 2021 results for the University of Bristol.


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