About us

venice-carnevalWelcome to one of the most forward-thinking and prestigious centres for Modern Languages in the UK..

We offer an exceptionally broad range of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. The languages we teach are French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and all of the languages of the Iberian peninsula: Spanish, Portuguese, Basque, Catalan and Galician. You can study these languages, together with the cultures associated with them, in a variety of programme combinations.

Over 75% of research in the Department of Modern Languages has been judged to be ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (national Research Excellence Framework exercise, which assessed research publications and the public impact of research carried out in all universities in the UK 2008-2014).

Our interests range from the contemporary to the medieval, and from Western Europe to the Caribbean, Africa, and China.  We have ground-breaking research in film, gender, memory and exile, genre, postcolonial studies and text production. We are also very active in creating multi-disciplinary networks across the University (for example Memory and Exile, Francopoco, and Translation Studies) and have recently won a host of high profile publicly-funded grants  on topics as diverse as medieval chronicles, genre and the Italian arts. 

Dr Craig Blunt, French Studies "How can we understand another society and, by comparison, learn more about our own? The key is mastery of the language. From this starting point, you can examine a country's history, its literature and culture."

The University of Birmingham is a Jean Monnet European Centre of Excellence. We have invested in high level research and have recently appointed research leaders to Chairs of European Film and French Discourses of  Sexuality.  We are building research links with European cities, such as Milan and Frankfurt, as well as with other UK Universities such as Nottingham. We are also looking at developing links with China (see for example The China Institute). Closer to home, we have a lively programme of national and international experts who come to the Department to give lectures and seminars and we pride ourselves on our research culture.