MA Palestine Studies

SOAS University of London

Program Description

MA Palestine Studies

SOAS University of London

MA Palestine Studies

The MA Palestine Studies is a simultaneously disciplinary and interdisciplinary programme that provides students with an overview of the ways in which varying bodies of scholarship across and intra various disciplines engage and study Palestine, and examines how the study of Palestine cuts across and informs scholarly, theoretical, political and disciplinary approaches. It develops an understanding of the complexities of modern and contemporary Palestine through a study of relevant material, and of the dynamics of colonisation, displacement, insecurity and security. It attends to the place of culture in representing conflict and identity politics and as a means of mediation and resistance.

The flexible study programme and the interdisciplinary curriculum will enrich students’ knowledge of issues relating to the questions of conflict and political economy, development, cultural politics, social and economic relations, identity, and other major concerns of humanities and social sciences. Students will develop an understanding of Palestinian history, political structure, development, culture and society. And they will become familiar with different disciplinary approaches, models, and scholarship frameworks in the study of Palestine, and the ability to write critically on topics relevant to the study of Palestine.


Students take 4 units in total: the Core course (1 unit), the Dissertation (1 unit), one or two from the list of Palestine specific courses (1 unit to 2 units), or one from the list of Palestine-specific courses (1 unit) and another from relevant courses on the Middle East (1 unit).

Core Course

The core course is in two parts:

Critical Perspectives on Palestine Studies I: History and Politics 15PNMH006 (0.5 unit) Term 1
Critical Perspectives on Palestine Studies II: Culture and Society 15PNMH007 (0.5 unit) Term 2

Core Module

  • Critical Perspectives on Palestine Studies I: History and Politics - 15PNMH006 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1
  • Critical Perspectives on Palestine Studies II: Culture and Society - 15PNMH007 (0.5 Unit) - Term 2

List A: Palestine-Specific Courses

  • Modern Palestinian Literature (PG) - 15PNMC379 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Zionist Ideology - 15PNMC035 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Israel, the Arab World and the Palestinians - 15PNMC038 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Identity and Language in Hebrew Literature - 15PNMC412 (1 Unit) - Full Year

List B: Courses Relating to the Middle East

Choose from the following courses:

  • Introduction to Standard Modern Arabic - 15PNMC032 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Intermediate Standard Modern Arabic - 15PNMC407 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Advanced Standard Modern Arabic - 15PNMC402 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Arabic 300 (Postgraduate) - 15PNMC390 (1 unit - 45 cats Unit)
  • Arabic 2 (PG) - 15PNMC382 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Arabic 4 (PG) - 15PNMC391 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Elementary Hebrew (PG) - 15PNMC392 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Intermediate Hebrew (PG) - 15PNMC393 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Advanced Hebrew (PG) - 15PNMC394 (1 Unit) - Full Year

Anthropology and Sociology Department

  • Issues in the Anthropology of Gender - 15PANH024 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1
  • Culture and Society of the Near and Middle East - 15PANC097 (1.0 Unit)

Development Studies Department

  • Problems of development in the Middle East and North Africa - 15PDSH019 (0.5 Unit) - Term 2

Centre for Gender Studies

  • Gender in the Middle East - 15PGNH001 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1
  • Gendering migration & diasporas - 15PGNH002 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1

Economics Department

  • Economic development of the Middle East - 15PECC341 (1 Unit) - Full Year

History Department

  • The End of Empire in the Middle East & the Balkans - 15PHIC004 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Modernity and the Transformation of the Middle East I - 15PHIH031 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1
  • Modernity and the Transformation of the Middle East II - 15PHIH032 (0.5 Unit) - Term 2

School of Law

  • Islamic Law (Ma/Llm) - 15PLAC121 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Law and Society in The Middle East and North Africa - 15PLAC130 (1 Unit) - Full Year - Not Running 2016/2017
  • Human Rights and Islamic Law - 15PLAC150 (1 Unit) - Full Year

Politics and International Studies Department

  • Political society in the Middle East - 15PPOH008 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1
  • State and transformation in the Middle East - 15PPOH011 (0.5 Unit) - Term 2
  • Comparative politics of the Middle East - 15PPOC026 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • The Law & Politics of State Violence: An Interdisciplinary Perspective - 15PPOH034 (0.5 Unit) - Full Year

Study of Religions

  • Critical Theory and the Study of Religions - 15PSRC037 (1 Unit) - Full Year - Not Running 2016/2017
  • Modern Trends in Islam - 15PNMC228 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Religion, Nationhood and Ethnicity in Judaism - 15PSRH030 (0.5 Unit) - Term 2 - Not Running 2016/2017


  • Social and Political Dimensions of Modern Arabic Literature - 15PNMC347 (1 Unit) - Full Year - Not Running 2016/2017


  • Communication, Culture and Politics in the Middle East: Theoretical and Analytical Approaches - 15PMSC005 (1 Unit) - Full Year
  • Film and Society in the Middle East - 15PNMC230 (1 Unit) - Full Year - Not Running 2016/2017
  • Mediated Culture in the Middle East: Politics and Communications - 15PMSH003 (0.5 Unit) - Term 1

E. Dissertation

Teaching & Learning

Each course has its own series of classes and seminars, and in addition students attend general lectures and seminars organised by the Centre for Palestine Studies. In most courses there is one two-hour class each week. This may be an informal lecture followed by a discussion or a student presentation. At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work where students may be expected to make full-scale presentations for units they take.

The dissertation is on an approved topic linked to one of the taught courses.

Learning resources

SOAS library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.

A Student's Perspective

"Nothing can truly describe your own personal SOAS experience, but one thing I can say is that it will be something you will remember for a lifetime and learn from not only your classes, but through life experience while being here."

Farkhanda Mohiyuddin

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated December 1, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Aug. 2018
Full time
United Kingdom - London, England
Start date: Aug. 2018
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Aug. 2018
United Kingdom - London, England
Application deadline Request Info
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