MA Thesis Examples

Recent Graduate Theses

The subjects of MA theses have included studies of individual poets or dramatists, novelists or autobiographers, as well as explorations of literary movements, themes or periods. Some of our more recent titles are:

“Passing as Jewish: The Material Consequences of Race and the Property of Whiteness in Late Twentieth-Century Passing Novels” (2017 Mullis)

“Eliot through Tolkien: Estrangement, Verse Drama, and the Christian Path in the Modern Era” (2017 Reynolds)

“Aesthetics, Politics, and the Urban Space in Postcolonial British Literature” (2017 Rahmat)

“Models of Claim, Resistance, and Activism in the Novels of Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Hays, and Frances Burney” (2017 Smith)

“English Literature’s Father of Authorial Androgyny: The Innovative Perspective of Chaucer and the Wife of Bath” (2017 Ingold)

 “’Verbal Hygiene’ on the Radio: An Exploration into Perceptions of Female Voices on Public Radio and How They Reflect Language and Gender Ideologies within American Culture (2017 Barrett)

“Divided Bodies: Nation Formation and the Literary Marketplace in Salman Rushdie’s Shame and Bapsi Sidhwa’s Cracking India” (2016 Mellon)

“Metaformal Trends in Contemporary American Poetry” (2016 Muller)

“Power Through Privilege: Surveying Perspectives on the Humanities in Higher Education in the Contemporary American Campus Novel” (2016 Klein)

“‘I always cure you when I come’: The Caregiver Figure in the Novels of Jane Austen” (2016 McKenzie)

“English Imperial Selfhood and Semiperipheral Witchcraft in The Faerie Queene, Daemonologie, and The Tempest” (2016 Davis)

“With Slabs, Bones, and Poles: De/Constructing Narratives of Hurricane Katrina in Jesmyn Ward’s Salvage the Bones, Natasha Trethewey’s Beyond Katrina, and Selah Saterstrom’s Slab” (2016 Lang)

“The Ghost of That Ineluctable Past”: Trauma and Memory in John Banville’s Frames Trilogy (2016 Berry)

“Breaking Through Walls and Pages: Female Reading and Education in the 18th Century British Novel” (2015 Majewski)

“The Economics of Gender Relations in London City Comedy” (2015 Weisse)

“Objects, People, and Landscapes of Terror: Considering the Sublime through the Gothic Mode in Late 19th Century Novels” (2015 Porter)

“Placing the Body: A Study of Postcolonialism and Environment in the Works of Jamaica Kincaid” (2015 Hutcherson)

“Wandering Bodies: The Disruption of Identities in Jamaica Kincaid’s Lucy and Edwidge Danticat’s The Farming of Bones“(2015 Martin)

“Mythogenesis as a Reconfiguration of Space in an ‘Alternate World’: The Legacy of Origin and Diaspora in Experimental Writing” (2015 Pittenger)

“Cunning Authors and Bad Readers: Gendered Authorship in ‘Love in Excess'” (2015 Bruening)

“‘The Thing Became Real’: New Materialisms and Race in the Fiction of Nella Larsen” (2015 Parkinson)

“‘Projections of the Not-Me’: Redemptive Possibilities of the Gothic within Wuthering Heights and Beloved” (2015 Glasser)

“Distortions, Collections, and Mobility: South Asian Poets and the Space for Female Subjectivity” (2015 Wilkey)

“From Text to Tech: Theorizing Changing Experimental Narrative Structures” (2015 Ortega)

“A Moral Being in an Aesthetic World: Being in the Early Novels of Kurt Vonnegut” (2015 Hubbard)

“Emerson, Nietzsche, and the Legacy of Method” (2014 Lee)

“Dark Reflections: Fantasy and Duality in the Work of David Lynch” (2014 Boyd)

“‘The Old Fierce Pull of Blood’: Family and the Southern Gothic” (2014 Davis)

“Limitations and Longing: Sacrifice in Global Anglophone Literature” (2014 Whitehair)

“The Humanity Strain: Diagnosing the Self in Walker Percy’s Fiction” (2014 McDonald)

“Deciphering the Real through Artifice: A Study of the Gaze in Victorian Art” (2014 Davis)

“Mourning Gendered Discipline: Virginia Woolf and the Modern Elegy” (2014 Wu)

“Visual Activism and the Twenty-First Century Prosthetic Limb” (2014 Ketcham)

“Mythic Contexts and Marginalized Figures: Unveiling Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin’s Poetics” (2014 Fitzpatrick)

“The Romance of Social Problems in Austen and Gaskell” (2014 Doski)

“Emerson, Nietzsche, and the Legacy of Method” (2014 Lee)

“Dark Reflections: Fantasy and Duality in the Work of David Lynch” (2014 Boyd)

“‘The Old Fierce Pull of Blood’: Family and the Southern Gothic” (2014 Davis)

“Limitations and Longing: Sacrifice in Global Anglophone Literature” (2014 Whitehair)

“The Humanity Strain: Diagnosing the Self in Walker Percy’s Fiction” (2014 McDonald)

“Deciphering the Real through Artifice: A Study of the Gaze in Victorian Art” (2014 Davis)

“Mourning Gendered Discipline: Virginia Woolf and the Modern Elegy” (2014 Wu)

“Visual Activism and the Twenty-First Century Prosthetic Limb” (2014 Ketcham)

“Mythic Contexts and Marginalized Figures: Unveiling Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin’s Poetics” (2014 Fitzpatrick)

“The Romance of Social Problems in Austen and Gaskell” (2014 Doski)

“’We must love on another or die’: The Ethic of Empathy in the AIDS Plays of Kramer, Vogel and Tucker Green” (2013 Longacre)

“Jazz Temporarily and Narrative: A Reading of Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man” (2013 Lee)

“‘Somewhere and not Anywhere’: A Place-Conscious Study of Literature Set in the City of New Orleans” (2013 Thompson)

“‘The pomp of death, / Is far more terrible, than death itself’: The Execution Spectacle on the English Theatrical Stage, 1660-1731” (2013 Appleby)

“’If we are like you in the rest, we will / resemble you in that’: Christian and Jew in William Shakespeare’s 1600 Play ‘The Merchant of Venice'” (2013 Johnston)

“‘I am moved by fancies that are curled / Around these images, and cling’: Photographic Narration and Creative Subjectivity in The Great Gatsby and The Sun Also Rises” (2013 Dunnevant)

“‘All violence is not equal’; Adrienne Rich’s Post-9/11 Poetry and the Precarious Life” (2013 Blevins)

“Alcoholics Polyphonous: Wittgenstein’s Linguistic Philosophy in David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest” (2013 Cobb)

“Refuge and Ecofeminism: The Possibility of a Strategic Essentialism” (2013 Pladus)

“(IL)Legitimate Problems: Instances of Queer Familial Creation and the Reinforcement of Patriarchal Structure in Eighteenth-Century British Literature” (2013 Forde-Mazrui)

“Resistance and Identity in Ernest Gaines’ The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, A Lesson Before Dying, and A Gathering of Old Men” (2013 Pinesett)

“To go on Doing Babbitts”: Recontextualizing Twilight Sleep as Lewisian Satire” (2013 Schaitkin)

“‘Sometime There is Breath’: Gertrude Stein’s Tender Buttons as Maternal Lexicon” (2013 Williams)

Walking in the Novels of Thomas Hardy (2013 Le)

“We Only Have Words Against/ POWER SUPERPOWER”: Literary Politics and the Subversion of Imperialism in Dos Passos’ U.S.A. (2012 Rommel)

To Be Born IS to Die: A Study of Spatio-Temporal Impossibility and the Apocalypse in Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses (2012 Eisinger)

“’The Dead Travel Fast’: The Gothic Politics of Irish Literature” (2012 Merritt)

“The Affirmation of Life in Wallace Stevens’ ‘The Auroras of Autumn’ and T.S. Eliot’s “Four Quartets” (2012 Lipes)

“Primitivism and The Animal in Shakespeare’s Macbeth” (2012 Neal)

“Ralph Waldo Emerson and the Ever-Evolving Art of Self-Reliant Reading” (2012 Barton)

“Wordsworth’s Gothic Poetics” (2012 Lang)

“’This Link between Narrative and Reality’: Weighing the Ethics and Implications of Trauma in The Moviegoer” (2012 Baker)

“Bodies in the Know: The Epistemology of Embodiement in Thomas Malory’s Trystram” (2011 Wong)

“Created Space: Domestic Myth-Making in the Novels of Elizabeth Bowen” (2011 Chafin)

“Whose Clothes Are They Wearing Anyway? Sartorial Exchange, Disguise, and Accumulation in Chaucer’s ‘The Clerk’s Tale’ and Dickens’s Our Mutual Friend” (2011 Ernst)

“‘Who Stand i’ th’ Gaps’: Narrative Authority in the Early Modern English Travel Play” (2011 Greenholt)

“‘Close Your Eyes And Listen To It, What Would You Think It Was?’: A Study of Sound Technologies in Samuel Beckett’s All That Fall, Embers, Krapp’s Last Tape and That Time” (2011 Jenkins)

“Tom Taylor’s Ticket-of-Leave Man: His Detective Model and Financial Commentary” (2011 Jones)

“Controlled Arrangements, Liberated Perceptions: Marianne Moore’s Early Poetry Through the Lens of Shklovskian Russian Formalism” (2011 Koval)

“Lured by the Mythic: Pursuit of the Primordial in Saul Bellow’s Henderson the Rain King and Malcolm Lowry’s Under the Volcano” (2011 Leonard)

“Communities of Gossip in Late Eighteenth-Century Fiction” (2011 Poe)

“Words without End: The Development of T.S. Eliot’s Poetics from ‘The Waste Land’ to ‘Four Quartets’” (2011 Vanhoozer)

“The Promise of Space in Mark Twain’s Traveling Narratives” (2011 Willis)

“An Intersection of Arts: Musicality in the Poetry of Louise Bogan” (2010 Alcala)

“‘It Was the Bruise of the War’: The Effects of Injury and Trauma on the Construction of Masculinity in Hemingway and Lawrence” (2010 Bevilacqua)

“Creating the Irish Book: The Cultural and Aesthetic Work of the Dolmen Press” (2010 Johnson)

“The Novel Novel: Dickens’ Reformulations of Shakespeare’s Hamlet” (2010 Jones)

“Michael Longley’s Poetics of Memory” (2010 Malarkey)

“Nineteenth Century Perceptions of Robert Browning: The Poet Through His Own Eyes and Those of His Victorian Critics and Devoted Readers” (2010 Martin)

“Blending Birth and Behavior: Masculine Representations of Patriarchy and Capitalism in the Eighteenth-Century Novel of Manners” (2010 McGowen)

“Story Has No Limit” (2010 Sleight)

“A Cortier’s Legacy: Castiglione’s Literary Influence on Elizabeth England” (2010 Vitale)

“The Eighth Deadly Sin: Dejection as Passion in the Wanderer” (2010 Wilkinson)

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