There is no prerequisite to the major, aside from English
1050 or Advanced Placement, but we strongly recommend that you take English 2101 (The British Literary Tradition I) early, since it will introduce you to writers, texts, and issues that are crucial to most subsequent courses.
For an English major
, you need to complete 11 courses, most of which are free electives (the course you take to fulfill the Advanced Literature requirement does not count toward the major, even if it is an English course
). Of the required courses, one is a senior seminar; currently two or three choices are offered each term. The department’s other requirement—four courses chosen from a number of possibilities—are chiefly designed to give you a sense of the historical range and diversity of English literature
. (English 2101, 2102, 2103, and 2104, which provide broad surveys covering more than one area, do not fulfill these area requirements. English
majors may count only two of those courses for the major and the Advanced Literature requirement.) The links below take you to a list of all courses in each area; for a current listing of courses offered this semester, click here .)
- Two courses in British/Irish literature before 1800 , in two different areas. This field is divided into three areas: Medieval ; Renaissance ; and Restoration and 18th Century . To fulfill the requirement, you have to take two courses in different areas. (Of course you are not limited to taking two courses in this field; you may take as many as you like.)
- Two courses in literature primarily after 1800 : one in British/Irish literature and one in American literature. One of these courses must be in 19th century literature and one must be in literature after 1900.
Often this requirement will mean either
pairing a course in American literature to 1900 with a course in British/Irish literature after 1900
- or -
pairing a course in 19th century British/Irish literature with a course in American literature after 1900
(Note your flexibility here: If you happen to take courses in both areas of American literature, you may take a course in either British/Irish area; similarly, if you happen to take courses in both areas of British/Irish literature, you may take a course in either American area.)
- The Junior Research Seminar (English 2250)
T his course must be taken in the junior year or earlier.
- A Senior Seminar
This course, numbered 5000, is meant to serve as a capstone course for your experience as an English major. At least two senior seminars, limited to English majors and capped at 15 students each, are offered each term.
- Five Electives
These courses can be any English department courses numbered 2000 and above, with the partial exception of the British Literary Tradition and American Literary Tradition courses (2101, 2102, 2103, 2104); a student may count only two of those courses towards the major.
- An additional literature course for the Advanced Literature requirement
English courses numbered below 2100 (courses in writing and rhetoric) do not fulfill this requirement. This course does not have to be an English course; some courses in other departments (especially Classical and Modern Languages) can also fulfill this requirement.