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Literatures of Modernity (MA)

Part of the Faculty of Arts

Students at a table in the MLC centre at Ryerson

Program Overview

Format: Full-time

Degree Earned: Master of Arts

Located in Toronto’s vibrant core, this one-year English MA affords students diverse learning opportunities. Innovative courses investigate modernity in literature from cultural, historical, and global settings. Students can pursue a major research paper, work as a teaching or research assistant, and complete a placement at a literary or cultural institution. Graduates have completed PhD studies worldwide, and work in fields such as writing, publishing, and teaching.

PDF fileDownload the program brochure

Graduate student reading a book next to a glass display case containing a sewing machine

At a Glance

  • Completion of a 4-year bachelor’s degree in English or equivalent program
  • Minimum GPA or equivalent of 3.00/4.33 (B) in the last two years of study
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Statement of interest
  • 10- to 15-page sample of work

For detailed fees information visit Fees by Program.

  • Literatures and Cultures from the 16th Century to the Present
  • Critical Theory and Genre Studies
  • Creative Writing, Rhetoric, and Poetics
  • Digital Humanities, Technology, and Urban Studies
  • Film, Visual Culture, and Popular Culture
  • Diasporic Modernities
  • Digital Publishing
  • Genders, Sexualities, and Humans
  • Modernism and Auto/Biography
  • Modernity and the Visual: Image and Text
  • Rise of Children’s Literature
  • Unreal Cities
  • Centre for Digital Humanities
  • Children’s Literature Archive
  • Modern Literature and Culture Research Centre
  • White Wall Review Creative Writing Journal and Reading Series

Admissions Contact

Graduate Studies Admissions Office
11th Floor, 1 Dundas Street West
Toronto, ON
Telephone: 416-979-5150
Fax: 416-979-5153

Program Contacts

Dr. Elizabeth Podnieks
Graduate Program Director
PhD, University of Toronto
Research areas: Modernism, Motherhood Studies, Life Writing, Popular/Celebrity Culture, Scholarly Editing, and Digital Humanities.
Telephone: 416-979-5000 ext. 6547

Lisa Benadiba
Program Administrator
Telephone: 416-979-5000 ext. 2098
Fax: 416-979-5153

“Coming from the U.K., I’ve loved studying literature and different media in the heart of Toronto’s dynamic creative and cultural scene. We’re a small, dedicated group of students, and I’ve made great friendships and had incredible support from teachers who have pushed me to grow as a researcher, and to apply successfully for PhD study.”

Rebecca Thursten, MA student
Adriana Sgromo , external link

Student Profile, external link

The program's practicum option helped Adriana Sgromo (literatures of modernity MA alumna) become involved in the arts community and develop practical skills.

How to Apply

Once you’ve made an informed choice about which program(s) you are going to apply to, preparing your application requires careful research and planning.


At Ryerson, we understand that pursuing graduate studies is a significant financial investment. Funding comes from a combination of employment contracts (as a teaching assistant), scholarships, awards and stipends. There are a number of additional funding sources – internal and external – available to graduate students that can increase these funding levels.