German PhD

Major code: GEPR


Research in German studies at Liverpool continues to develop its breadth and vitality, through new appointments, and through a strategy directed towards promoting cooperation among staff in different subject areas.

Subject Overview

German research interests in MLC focus in depth on the twentieth century and contemporary period from a broad range of cultural, historical and linguistic perspectives. We would particularly welcome proposals for postgraduate study in the following areas in which we have substantial expertise, and prospective applicants are invited to contact Dr Lyn Marven (Subject Lead for German), to discuss potential supervisors and projects:

Subject Outline

  • Cultural history of the 20th Century: Memory practice and especially musealisation of National Socialism and the GDR; Cultural politics and artistic practice in the German dictatorships; Images and memories of 1968; Periodical culture, especially literary and political magazines
  • Contemporary late 20th and 21st-century literature and film, including writing by women and non-native speakers of German; Berlin literature in German and English; Representations of the military in film and literature; Literature of the fantastic and unreal; Autobiography/life-writing 
  • German sociolinguistics and pedagogy, in particular allochthonous and autochthonous minority languages; Emerging German varieties – multi-ethnic, urban and youth varieties; Language policies and language change; Trends in German language teaching
  • Translation studies, especially sociological approaches and literary translation

German Studies within the department of Modern Languages and Cultures (MLC) at the University of Liverpool invites applications for postgraduate study through the North West Consortium Doctoral Training Partnership (NWCDTP). 

Please note that the AHRC NWCDTP is now offering a limited number of 1+3 studentships instead of standalone master’s funding. Those interested in applying for funding should contact Dr Niamh Thornton,, NWDTP Academic Lead for Languages for further guidance about the procedures, and prospective applicants for German are welcome to direct informal queries to Dr Lyn Marven,

Key Facts

REF 2014
72% of our publications were rated 4* and 3* (world leading and internationally excellent), which ranks Liverpool Modern Languages and Cultures as 14/57 in the sector. 90% of environment was also rated 4* and 3*.

Why Department of Modern Languages and Cultures?

Close-knit community

We are a smaller department than many nationally, but manage at the same time to maintain a variety of very distinctive areas of strength in research. As a result we are uniquely placed to offer taught programmes which are tailored to the individual in a friendly, supportive atmosphere and, for research students, close contact with your supervisors from the outset.

Interdisciplinary activity

The department of Modern Languages and Cultures comprises academic staff working across a wide range of language-based studies covering literature, new media, film, history, politics, culture and sociolinguistics. Alongside French, Italian and Chinese, the department also offers Film Studies. The Department is an active participant in the School’s inter-disciplinary research centres, including the Centre for the Study of International Slavery, the Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Eighteenth-Century Worlds research centre. Since 2010, we have been part of the School of Histories, Languages and Cultures, one of four Schools in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.