The English Department fosters the study of British, American, and Anglophone literature—old and new—in ways that are both intensive and open. We study how English literature works, how we understand and appreciate it, and how we write about it. We offer a wide array of courses in poetry, drama, fiction, creative nonfiction, film, digital media, and theory. All our courses emphasize the development of student skills in writing, textual analysis, and argument. The department’s faculty members are deeply committed to undergraduate teaching and advising. You will find considerable diversity in our critical methods, including cross-disciplinary approaches that relate the study of literature to history, politics, science, as well as to other art forms. We encourage students in our classes likewise to forge their own new ways of understanding literature and culture.
In addition to the standard English concentration, we offer an English concentration track in the practice of Nonfiction Writing. The concentration in English and the English/Nonfiction track follow the same core requirements, and students in the English concentration may elect Nonfiction Writing courses as electives. We invite applications from qualified juniors to the honors programs in both English and Nonfiction.
One of the largest humanities concentrations at Brown, English provides a strong foundation for a liberal education and for employment in many sectors, especially those that centrally involve writing and working with texts (in any form). In addition to authorship, scholarship, and teaching, these include: journalism, publishing, advertising, visual media, consulting, public relations, public service, finance, government, corporate research, and administration. Our English concentrators routinely go on to law, medical, and professional schools as well as to graduate education in literature and the arts.