About American Studies at Keele

Keele pioneered the development of American Studies in Great Britain as an Honours degree subject and has been consistently successful in national teaching and research assessment exercises. American Studies is a multi-disciplinary programme devoted to analysis of US society and culture from the foundation of the republic to the present day. Tutors in American Studies also collaborate with colleagues in English on the small but successful degree programme in English and American Literatures.

We offer a wide range of teaching in American literature, history, politics, geography and popular culture, including film. There is considerable cross-fertilisation of ideas between the different disciplines and, in many ways, American Studies reflects the core of Keele's educational philosophy  -  that areas of knowledge are interdependent and that different disciplines illuminate each other.

Students are encouraged to approach the diversity of the United States from the diversity of the perspective offered by the various component disciplines. After a grounding in the methods of history, literature, and politics, students are able to take advantage of a choice of modules that portray the development of American society and culture from the founding of the Republic to the present day.

We place a high priority on pastoral care, and offer a supportive environment as well as a challenging academic experience.

Staff research covers a variety of areas. Historical research embraces Civil War history, religion and politics, and the Cold War state. In American literature, interests cover fiction and poetry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. We have particular strengths in Anglo-American modernism, and in post-war and contemporary fiction, from the Beat Generation of the 1950s to writers emerging in the twenty-first century. There are opportunities for research in film and popular culture. In the social sciences there is substantial research into a number of central aspects of North American political science. Particular interests for which library holdings are especially good are the presidency, political parties, and electoral behaviour.

Library holdings sustain research in the above areas, with particular strengths including a wide range of holdings of government documents and congressional committee hearings, and a modern poetry collection.

The David Bruce Centre for American Studies fosters our postgraduate and research culture. Founded in 1969 and funded by a substantial endowment, the Bruce Centre promotes wider understanding of the United States through fortnightly research seminars, Visiting Fellowships and international research colloquia. The Centre also provides various kinds of financial support  for postgraduate students.

If you are interested in American Studies or English and American Literatures at Keele, come along to one of our Open Days or email to arrange another date to visit.