Course information

Writing and Society at work (course information)

We offer a Master of Arts coursework degree compatible with a model developed and run by the London Consortium since 1993. It is a degree conferred by the University of Western Sydney and taught by the Writing and Society Research Group. The degree places the study of creative writing and literature in larger artistic and cultural context through our collaborations and partnerships with leading cultural institutions in Greater Sydney.

We are closely following the logic of the innovative course structure developed by the London Consortium. This involves what has been termed, a little technically, 'cultural phenomenology': that is, an important object, idea, or cultural practice is isolated, and examined from a number of different angles, so that an understanding of how we experience that thing is developed. This method is well adapted to thinking in both creative and critical ways. In London, for example, units have examined, 'Coldness', 'Experiment', 'Catastrophe' from many different angles. Our units will take a similar approach.

Course content

Below is a brief outline of the units that will make-up the MA in Cultural and Creative Practice in 2012. See the information regarding course structure to get a sense of how these units combine to make up the degree. For details of when these units will run both in full-time and part-time modes see the Calendar link.


IDEA:  Gail Jones  (the focus of this unit needs to be kept secret until the MCA officially announce their reopening program later in 2011)

WORD (AWKWARDNESS):  Ivor Indyk examines the theme of ‘Awkwardness’ in Australian Literature 

WORLD (SYMMETRY):  Anthony Uhlmann   examines how creation in art might be understood as an analogue of creation in nature

• Research Methods:  This is a team-taught unit that relates to methods of research in both creative and critical activity. The unit will also be the place students begin to design their final work, which will be either a creative or critical work


SEARCH (CHANGE):  Nicholas Jose considers processes of transmission and transformation between cultures, including translation and other forms of creative and critical engagement, with a focus on writing

DISPLAY (SOUNDINGS):  Hazel Smith will examine the relationship between text and sound, literature and music

• Research Workshop:  A unit in which students, led by Consortium staff, will workshop ideas from their final project

• Masters Project:  Working with a supervisor from the teaching group students will work on a major creative or critical project

Part-time study

Students are welcome to enrol in the MA part-time. Part-time students complete the same units as full time students but work across two years. See Calendar for details of the unit progression.

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