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Old Fashioned Library

The Languages course is run by Pembroke College, University of Oxford, in close collaboration with colleagues from Queen Mary University of London and Princeton University.


It is aimed at pupils who wish to study any language at university, either from advanced level or ab initio (from scratch). It is a course that aims to enhance students' skills in both language and literary analysis, including questions of philosophy, gender studies, politics, history and identity. In essence, it mimics a university-style programme of the study of Languages.

The seminar series for this course is themed around the theme, "Languages, Literature and Identity."


Students will be set a book in the language they are studying at A Level (or a book in English of the language they wish to study ab initio) which they will read alongside a seminar series examining the following questions:

  • An Introduction to Narrative Identity: How do we write ourselves?

  • Writing Between Cultures, or in-between Identity

  • National/International Identities: Exile, Migration, Adolescence

  • Disabled Writers and Writing Disability in Autobiography

  • Subjectivity, Hybridity and Multi-Identities in Life Writing

  • Ecological Identities

Photographed below is Dr Tim Farrant (Fellow and Tutor in Modern Languages, Reader in Nineteenth Century French Literature at Pembroke College) addressing the Languages cohort during the 2023 Study Skills Day.

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