The EMSP programme now offers a minor! Read more>>
Zhou's comment suggests that we are still living with the consequences of that pivotal event. Indeed, the French Revolution was only one of many upheavals in Western thought, culture and society at the birth of the modern world, including the Reformation, the Enlightenment and Romanticism. Why and how did such upheavals occur, and what were their influences on subsequent thought and culture?
The Early Modern Studies Programme tries to answer these questions. It seeks to examine the concept of "modernity" by looking at its origins and development in European thought and culture. EMSP, like many King's programmes, is interdisciplinary. Students study the early modern period, from the 16th century to the early 19th century, from a wide range of perspectives. In order to try to understand the period, we examine it from philosophical, scientific, moral, social, institutional and aesthetic points of view.
EMSP is an ideal programme for students who want to delve deep into the structures of today's culture and look at their points of origin. Because the programme is broad and flexible, students gain an overall understanding of the period, but are also able to focus on areas of interest to them. By taking courses in EMSP, students gain insight into the nature of the Renaissance, the Protestant Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, the Enlightenment and Romanticism.
Because EMSP is a King's Combined Honours Programme, it is paired with the study of another arts or science honours discipline. Many students use this as an opportunity to study another subject in an early modern context, such as early modern theatre or literature, but the link isn't necessary—these studies can complement so many other fields, from politics to music, from history to science.
Along with other degree requirements, EMSP students take three core classes, one for each upper year of study, which cover the modern self, the study of nature, and state, society and revolution in the early modern period. Students in any degree program at King's or Dalhousie can also take EMSP courses as electives. Complete course list >>
The focus in EMSP on the underlying structures of modern arts also makes this programme an ideal preparation for a life as a curator, author or critic, and its examination of why and how our society developed the way it did—into a modern civilization—serves as training for students interested in politics, law or history. And those with an eye, ear or hand for art, music, writing or theatre will be inspired and well grounded by the study of great artists like DaVinci, Shakespeare, Mozart and Goethe.
EMSP students go on to study in a variety of areas at both the graduate and professional levels. They can be found studying at major British and Canadian graduate schools—including Cambridge, the London School of Economics, and Toronto—as well as top Canadian law schools and medical schools. Graduates have taught in the Foundation Year and History of Science and Technology programmes at King's, become school teachers, put on exhibitions of their paintings, created innovative children's theatre, won internships with prestigious magazines in New York City, and traced the footsteps of an 18th century French Enlightenment thinker in Canada by canoe. This interdisciplinary education equips its students with both an understanding of the modern world—from its origins—and the ability to act within it.
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