MA in Cultural and Creative Practice

More than an MA Creative Writing

More than an MA Creative Writing

The Writing and Society Research Centre offers a challenging, rigorous coursework degree combining criticism and creativity and leading to an MA in Cultural and Creative Practice. Unlike other Master of Creative Writing degrees our course work MA places the study of creative writing and literature in a larger artistic and cultural context through our collaborations and partnerships with leading cultural institutions in Greater Sydney. For example in 2012 Gail Jones taught a unit on time at the Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney. Gail's unit coincided with the MCA's reopening exhibition 'Marking Time'.

In 2013 the MA began with a unit taught by Ivor Indyk at the MCA. The unit discussed the expression of awkwardness in Australian literature, and drew on material from the MCA exhibition 'South of No North: Aberhart, Eggleston, McKenna',(opens in a new window) particularly the issues of  vulnerability, integrity and isolation in the paintings of Noel McKenna. Read more about this unit.

More generally we follow the logic of what has been termed, a little technically, 'cultural phenomenology': that is, an important object, idea, or cultural practice is brought into focus and examined from a number of different angles, so that an understanding of how we experience that thing is developed.

Critical and Creative Writing Program

This method is well adapted to thinking in both creative and critical ways. By connecting creative writing practice to ideas and creative work from across the arts and sciences, we offer students the opportunity to think across creative, critical and disciplinary categories. The MA in Cultural and Creative Practice mixes units related to writing and aesthetic practice with the opportunity to work with some of Australia’s leading writers, editors and critics in developing creative or critical work.

Course content

Below is a brief outline of the units that make-up the MA in Cultural and Creative Practice in 2013. Find out more by following the links in the unit titles.

Session 1

Word (awkwardness): examines the theme of ‘Awkwardness’ in Australian Literature. Taught by Ivor Indyk.

Search (translation): considers processes of transmission and transformation between cultures, including translation and other forms of creative and critical engagement, with a focus on writing. Taught by Mridula Nath Chakraborty.

World (symmetry): examines how creation in art might be understood as an analogue of creation in nature. Taught by Anthony Uhlmann.

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 map out their creative or critical Masters project.

Session 2

Idea (time): This unit explores some of the creative, philosophical and social dimensions of time. Taught by Gail Jones.

Display (soundings): will examine the relationship between text and sound, literature and music. Taught by Hazel Smith.

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 their units across two years. Please note the MA will be reconfigured in 2015, so students enrolling part-time in 2014 will complete their degree in a slightly different form.

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