Master of Arts
Dependency and Slavery Studies

Dependency and Slavery Studies

Dependency and Slavery Studies is an international and interdisciplinary master’s degree program designed for a study period of four semesters. It is taught entirely in English and aimed at students with a focus on or interest in the fields of history, material and/or social sciences. Based on the new research concept of “strong asymmetrical dependency”, this program opens up new approaches to studying and researching slavery and other forms of strong asymmetric dependency from an interdisciplinary perspective.  In investigating deeply entrenched relationships of social dependency such as slavery, serfdom or debt bondage in different epochs, geographies and cultures, the focus of this program is not the modern world but its multifaceted historical origins in Asian, American, African and European societies. The overarching objective is to break free of the binary opposition “slavery versus freedom“. To a lesser extent, this degree program also offers insights to present-day phenomena of extreme asymmetrical dependency in order to explore this subject in various contexts of today’s world. 

Students learn to classify research questions across disciplines and independently solve complex problems while expanding their methodological and analytical competencies. In this context, transcultural comparison is seen as a central aspect in the research of slavery and other forms of dependency.


Possible lines of work:

NGOs, policy consulting, development collaboration, academia (research management, teaching/research at universities, research institutions, etc.), editing/publishing, museums, adult education

Open admission
Master of Arts
4 Semester
Winter semester

Examination Regulations (German versions are legally binding)

University degree (German or non-German) in a relevant discipline with at least 180 ECTS

English language proficiency (CEFR level C1)

Minimum grade of 2.5 or local equivalent

At the University of Bonn, multilingualism and cultural diversity are considered to be valuable resources that complement subject-specific qualifications. This is why, in addition to curricular language modules, students have access to a diverse range of language-learning offers, including the independent-study offers at the Center for Language Learning (Sprachlernzentrum, SLZ) in which they can autonomously learn a foreign language or enhance existing language skills. Furthermore, students can apply for the “Certificate of Intercultural Competence” free of charge, which promotes extra-curricular and interdisciplinary activities of international or intercultural nature.

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