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MaRS - Medieval and Renaissance Studies

The degree course “Medieval and Renaissance Studies” (MaRS) conveys insight into the historically constituted forms of human existence characteristic of the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and the Early Modern Era (covering politics, law, economics, religion, art, language, literature et al.). The study program encompasses the historical periods from the 4th/5th to the 16th/17th centuries and interdisciplinary and international research approaches are central to it. Applying methods from the humanities, students acquire knowledge from literary and material artifacts. A strong focus lies on the latinate cultures of Europe but at the same time a concomitant interest in Islamic and Asiatic cultures counteracts the eurocentrism common to many traditional degree courses. MaRS is modularized into four superordinate areas of study: the early, middle and late Middle Ages, and the early modern age, up to the 16th/17th centuries. This allows students to develop synchronic or diachronic, regional or systematic areas of interest.


MaRS is organized so that students opt for a major subject (“Kernbereich”, e.g. Anglistik, Germanistik, Geschichte or Kunstgeschichte) and additionally complete modules from at least two other, minor subject areas/study programs, depending on students’ own emphases (“Ergänzungsbereich”, e.g. Anglistik, evangelische bzw. Katholische Theologie, Geschichte, Germanistik, Islamwissenschaft, Klassische Philologie, Komparatistik, Kunstgeschichte, Ostasienwissenschaften, Philosophie, Rechtsgeschichte, Romanistik, Ur- & Frühgeschichte). The first year of study is primarily intended to convey knowledge of the main subject and to allow students to gain a general overview of the minor subjects. Specialization is encouraged in the second year. In the fourth semester the separate parts of the final exam should be completed.


MaRS is a research-orientated Master program which prepares graduates to carry out scholarly tasks in professional contexts. The degree equips graduates with the skills needed to pursue further academic qualifications, in the areas of Medieval, Renaissance or Early Modern Studies, via doctoral and research programs at RUB and other universities. The interdisciplinary orientation of MaRS is notable in this context since it transcends traditional subject boundaries and allows for a broader understanding of research topics. At the same time MaRS prepares graduates for work in various occupational areas in which interdisciplinary, linguistic, and subject-specific abilities are needed, such as fields related to new and traditional media, museums, libraries, archives, culture management, journalism, publishing, tourism.


Translation from German: Sarah Briest