Mrig
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Hello, I m from India and I have just finished my BA in History Honours from a ' not-so-top' University in India. I wanted to apply for a M.St. at Oxford this year. But couldn't write a research proposal before the funding deadline. I wish if you could tell me what books and materials did you guys at UK Universities study at the undergraduate level ( mainly for European History modules and Historical Research Methods modules). You know Arts and Humanities programmes at the undergraduate level in countries like India are pathetic with very little focus on research training. I want to know what books were you all made to study for topics like Early Modern and Late Modern History, Contemporary History and Historical Research Methods. I will be very grateful if you could help me with your suggesstions.
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Josb
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You won't go to Oxford if you ask that sort of question. My advice is to go to a better known uni in India (for a master), and then consider the UK again.
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username1518909
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(Original post by Josb)
You won't go to Oxford if you ask that sort of question. My advice is to go to a better known uni in India (for a master), and then consider the UK again.
Not sure this comment is really helpful, OP simply stated 'not-so-top' which doesn't necessarily equate 'bad' (which again, is ridiculously arbitrary).

Getting in to an MSt/MPhil at Oxbridge seem to depend a lot on the undergraduate final degree mark, as well as your research proposal. Having gone to a 'prestigious' university matters less.

Back to the original question, I wouldn't worry too much about the content of your existing undergraduate course - there are likely to be a lot of similarities and differences regardless, and coming up with a specific reading list might become an indefinite task.

I'd say apply anyway, but if you are concerned perhaps send an email to the graduate admissions person of that specific faculty to enquire if they have a reading list for prospective students who are preparing to start that course (but this might be more relevant once you have an offer!).
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Camilli
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Perhaps OP is looking for some inspiration for a research proposal? I must say that this was the most intimidating part of my master's application and if I hadn't found a previously unused document to explore while taking another course locally, I don't know what I would have put together.
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Mrig
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(Original post by JimmyLondon)
Not sure this comment is really helpful, OP simply stated 'not-so-top' which doesn't necessarily equate 'bad' (which again, is ridiculously arbitrary).

Getting in to an MSt/MPhil at Oxbridge seem to depend a lot on the undergraduate final degree mark, as well as your research proposal. Having gone to a 'prestigious' university matters less.

Back to the original question, I wouldn't worry too much about the content of your existing undergraduate course - there are likely to be a lot of similarities and differences regardless, and coming up with a specific reading list might become an indefinite task.

I'd say apply anyway, but if you are concerned perhaps send an email to the graduate admissions person of that specific faculty to enquire if they have a reading list for prospective students who are preparing to start that course (but this might be more relevant once you have an offer!).
Thanks for your reply. Anyways, I have left hopes of applying for Mst. will try for a Ph.D. after my Masters. Thanks for your suggestion. Will surely ask them if have a reading list for prospective student. We had books such as Early Modern europe by Euan Cameron, A Short History of Europe by TCW Blanning, and modern Europe by CJH hayes, plus, books by MS Anderson, Maurice Dobb's Studies in the Development of Capitalism, Jan de Vries, and a few more. Are these books studied in UK too? Our syllabus isnt up to date and quite archaic. Oh and I read Eric hobsbawm's Age of ....series too.
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username1518909
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(Original post by Mrig)
Thanks for your reply. Anyways, I have left hopes of applying for Mst. will try for a Ph.D. after my Masters. Thanks for your suggestion. Will surely ask them if have a reading list for prospective student. We had books such as Early Modern europe by Euan Cameron, A Short History of Europe by TCW Blanning, and modern Europe by CJH hayes, plus, books by MS Anderson, Maurice Dobb's Studies in the Development of Capitalism, Jan de Vries, and a few more. Are these books studied in UK too? Our syllabus isnt up to date and quite archaic. Oh and I read Eric hobsbawm's Age of ....series too.

Oh that's a shame, but good luck! As a side note, it might be of use for you to know what unlike for undergraduate degrees you can apply to both Oxford and Cambridge for postgraduate ones - which I guess could allow you to improve your chances.

Sorry, I wasn't very clear in my original post, I don't know the specifics of history - was only posting as I've just gone through the admissions procedure for a Masters at Cambridge in a different humanities subject.
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Mrig
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(Original post by JimmyLondon)
Yes I agree they are incredibly intimidating to approach, but at the same time (I only know for Cambridge) they are only meant to be a one page document, and I *believe*, at least for a Masters, more about conveying an ideas and interest in the subject and a specific area of research - rather than any secondary sources.
Do u know atleast how many names of Books do they require for the bibliography part? I have formed a research idea in my mind after reading a couple of books but I dont think they are enough.
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username1518909
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(Original post by Mrig)
Do u know atleast how many names of Books do they require for the bibliography part? I have formed a research idea in my mind after reading a couple of books but I dont think they are enough.
I don't know I'm afraid, all I can tell you is that a friend of mine went to Cambridge for a Masters in History, and she didn't really include a bibliography at all in the research proposal. It was more a chance to describe what you are interested in researching.
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Mrig
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(Original post by JimmyLondon)
I don't know I'm afraid, all I can tell you is that a friend of mine went to Cambridge for a Masters in History, and she didn't really include a bibliography at all in the research proposal. It was more a chance to describe what you are interested in researching.
Oh no! I have been really foolish to have not atleast made an effort.Oh God! it was only this 'reasearch proposal' thing that held me back.
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Mrig
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(Original post by Mrig)
Oh no! I have been really foolish to have not atleast made an effort.Oh God! it was only this 'reasearch proposal' thing that held me back.
Anyways, thanks Jimmy!
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Mrig
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Thanks, all of you for your useful suggestions
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Josb
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(Original post by Mrig)
Thanks for your reply. Anyways, I have left hopes of applying for Mst. will try for a Ph.D. after my Masters. Thanks for your suggestion. Will surely ask them if have a reading list for prospective student. We had books such as Early Modern europe by Euan Cameron, A Short History of Europe by TCW Blanning, and modern Europe by CJH hayes, plus, books by MS Anderson, Maurice Dobb's Studies in the Development of Capitalism, Jan de Vries, and a few more. Are these books studied in UK too? Our syllabus isnt up to date and quite archaic. Oh and I read Eric hobsbawm's Age of ....series too.
These books are fine, but perhaps you need to read more specialised historians. In your research proposal, you usually have to mention a great scholar in the beginning, then go in depths and quote more recent and specialised studies, which are related to your proposed thesis.
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Mrig
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(Original post by Josb)
These books are fine, but perhaps you need to read more specialised historians. In your research proposal, you usually have to mention a great scholar in the beginning, then go in depths and quote more recent and specialised studies, which are related to your proposed thesis.
Can you suggest me some specific books on Early Modern European (not British) History which are taught in UK Universities?
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Josb
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(Original post by Mrig)
Can you suggest me some specific books on Early Modern European (not British) History which are taught in UK Universities?
What do you mean by "not British", do you focus on a specific country/area? do you have a specific theme (Economics, politics, society, culture...)?
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Mrig
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I meant that the book shouldnt be focussed on British History. And it should be focussed more on Political History, for instance- The Rise and fall of Great Powers by Paul Kennedy
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Josb
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(Original post by Mrig)
I meant that the book shouldnt be focussed on British History. And it should be focussed more on Political History, for instance- The Rise and fall of Great Powers by Paul Kennedy
So you're interested in Early Modern diplomatic history of the Western World? From the Conquest of America to the Thirty Years' War?
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gutenberg
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For Spain, check out anything by Elliott, Parker, Kamen. For France, Greengrass and Holt, Davis for more religious stuff. For the Low Countries, there's Israel, Parker again, and Pollmann. For Thirty Years War, Peter Wilson's book seems to have been generally well-received. These are just things I can think of off the top of my head, so I'm sure others will have more to add

Oh, and Quentin Skinner & Martin van Gelderen for more political thought/intellectual history.
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