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UK: University of Exeter rolls out degree in magic



A degree course in magic being offered for 2024 will be one of the first in the UK, the University of Exeter said.

The “innovative” MA in Magic and Occult Science had been created following a “recent surge in interest in magic”, the course leader said.

It would offering an opportunity to study the history and impact of witchcraft and magic around the world on society and science, bosses said.

The one-year programme starts in September 2024.

Academics with expertise in history, literature, philosophy, archaeology, sociology, psychology, drama, and religion will show the role of magic on the west and the east.

The university said it was one of the only postgraduate courses of its kind in the UK to combine the study of the history of magic with such a wide range of other subjects.

Prof Emily Selove, course leader, said: “A recent surge in interest in magic and the occult inside and outside of academia lies at the heart of the most urgent questions of our society.

“Decolonisation, the exploration of alternative epistemologies, feminism and anti-racism are at the core of this programme.”

The course will be offered in the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies.

Prof Selove said: “This MA will allow people to re-examine the assumption that the west is the place of rationalism and science, while the rest of the world is a place of magic and superstition.”

The university said the course could prepare students for careers in teaching, counselling, mentoring, heritage and museum work, work in libraries, tourism, arts organisations or the publishing industry, among other areas of work.

A choice of modules includes dragons in western literature and art, the legend of King Arthur, palaeography, Islamic thought, archaeological theory and practice and the depiction of women in the Middle Ages.

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