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2.3.1.6    Cultural Studies

The import of ‘culture’ for understanding human activity and the history of its many uses provide the initial basis of Cultural Studies, an interdisciplinary field formed over forty years ago, primarily in the US and UK. Since then, interest in the field has grown exponentially. Incorporating a diverse range of new theoretical inputs, methodological innovations and objects of inquiry, Cultural Studies takes up a number of issues related to contemporary culture while being aware of their specific historical formations. The research field broadly includes: analysis of contemporary urban cultural practices, including the consumption and politics of mass media, popular literature, consumerism, lifestyles and urban architecture and spaces, the construction of individual and collective identities and formation of subjectivities and, the politics and interests in knowledge production and reproduction. Students who take up this minor will leave it with knowledge of contemporary debates in cultural studies and with a theoretical tool-kit capable of analysing a range of social processes and cultural forms and practices including media, urbanism, critical theory, cinema, cyberspace, popular fiction, popular music and television. Although central to daily life in contemporary, high-technology-based societies, many of these contemporary cultural phenomena have been placed outside the boundaries of established disciplines such as sociology, history and literary studies, in part because the concepts developed within singular disciplines are unable to capture their complexities.

Through multidisciplinary methodologies, the Minor in Cultural Studies combines and adapts qualitative research strategies to specific analytic interests, including textual analysis, ethnographic observations and different theories of interpretation, including semiotics, psychoanalysis, post-structuralism, postmodernism and cultural analytics.

The general aims of the Minor are:

  1. To provide coherence to possible combinations of the different modules offered by different departments elected by undergraduates.
  2. To provide conceptual and methodological tools for students to gain depth of understanding and skills in analysis of contemporary cultural practices.
  3. To provide students with analytic and conceptual skills which are increasingly demanded in a service-oriented and information-based economy.

Programme Requirements

Students must pass a minimum of 24 MCs of recognised Cultural Studies Minor modules which must include:

  • NM3241 Cultural Studies: Theory and Practice
  • Five elective modules
  • A minimum of 8 MCs at Level-2000
  • A minimum of 8 MCs at Level-3000 (including NM3241)
  • Students are limited to taking a maximum of three modules (including NM3241) from the same department (outside student’s major).

Recognised Modules

For the latest list of recognised modules, please visit the Minor in Cultural Studies website at: https://www.fas.nus.edu.sg/cnm/prospective-students/undergraduate/programmes-offered/minor-cultural-studies

You may also email the academic convenor Professor Audrey Yue (cnmyia@nullnus.edu.sg) to recognise FASS modules not in this list or modules taken during exchange programmes at other universities for the minor.

Major modules read in excess of graduation requirements may be used to fulfil the Minor requirements.