Eleanor Bloomfield

Eleanor is studying for a Master of Arts in English.

Eleanor Bloomfield

“I took the mildly unusual route of entering a two-year masters degree straight from a Bachelor of Arts, instead of doing honours first and then masters. The two-year option appealed to me because of its continuity - after finishing my undergraduate degree I knew I wanted to go on to a masters so it made sense to enter it straight away.

“I was inspired to continue into postgraduate study because at the end of my BA there was still so much I wanted to explore! The structure of the BA gives you quite a broad scope but postgraduate study is much more focused on whichever area you chose to pursue.

“My undergraduate courses had wonderful teachers who made Middle English literature vibrant, colourful and relevant. I love the fluency and rhythm of the language and am fascinated by how its literature so strongly reflects the culture, history, religion and politics of the time. Studying Middle English literature is a very good way in to understanding the spirit of the age.

“My thesis is on the ‘performance of piety’ in fifteenth-century York, exploring the demonstration of faith in this period and examining the links between piety and its public exhibition.

“My supervisor Tom Bishop made me the happy recipient of a Marsden Scholarship, which allowed me to visit York in July for a bit of on-the-spot research. This was incredibly valuable and a great motivator.

“Last year I took advantage of the elective option under the MA schedule and took a full year course in advanced German alongside my English courses. This helped me gain the Goethe Institut C1 Zertifikat Deutsch, which allows me to study at tertiary level in Germany. The elective was a valuable opportunity to maintain my interest and proficiency in a subject area other than English.

“This year I entered a poster in the inaugural Arts Impact competition. Making the poster was unexpectedly time consuming but it was a very good opportunity to make my research visible to an audience beyond my supervisor.

“English students are an eclectic mix, but we’re all articulate, engaged, and passionate about literature.”

Find out more about studying English.