Welcome to the English Department
About the Major
The Department of English offers courses in English literature, American literature, African American and ethnic literatures, dramatic literature, poetry, autobiography, science fiction, detective novels, critical theory, and a great deal more. Students who elect to major in English have wide-ranging interests and goals, but what they tend to share is a fascination for the way in which human experience takes shape in and through language. The English major exposes students to what is regarded as the canon of English literature as well as to literatures that speak from cultural, racial, or economic margins.
An English major also provides students with the necessary skills for reading intelligently and critically and for writing clearly and persuasively. It invites them to ponder questions raised by contemporary literary theory, such as
- How does a reader create meaning from a text?
- How do different methods of interpretation open up varied and even contradictory ways of reading a text?
- How does literature shape, and how is it shaped by, history and culture?
Above all, an English major expands students’ awareness of the complexities that confront human beings from varying walks of life while awakening them to the profound value of attentive critical analysis. Our majors learn not to rely on easy answers but to see instead the value in posing better questions.