Department of English
Dr. Paul Almonte, Chairperson
The Department of English offers a major in English Literature and a minor in English.
Requirements for English Literature Major
Degree of Bachelor of Arts
Six of the required credits for the major count towards the Core Curriculum Requirements.
|EL-123||Forms of Literature: Poetry and Drama 1||3|
|EL-201||Survey of English Literature I||3|
|EL-202||Survey of English Literature II||3|
|EL-||Elective from Group 1: The Beginnings through the Early English Renaissance||3|
|EL-||Elective from Group 2: Shakespeare through the Age of Reason||3|
|EL-||Elective from Group 3: Romanticism through the Late Victorian Era||3|
|EL-||Elective from Group 4: Modernism through the Contemporary Era||3|
|Choose four English Electives at 200-level or above||12|
May count towards the Core Literature Requirement.
Special Notes on English Literature Major Requirements
Group designations may be found in the course listings.
A student should have a 2.5 average in the core courses (EL-123 and EL-134) to be accepted as an English major. Majors must maintain a 2.5 average in department courses. Students may petition to waive these requirements under special circumstances.
The Hopkins Scholar Program
The Hopkins Scholar Program offers students the opportunity to work individually under the direction of a faculty member on a special project. In a two-semester sequence (6 credits), typically as part of the Honors Program, students are introduced to the methods of research and become acquainted with the background material for their research projects. This enrichment of the English curriculum is continued as the Hopkins Scholar undertakes an independent research project and produces a senior thesis. Participants must have a 3.0 average in English courses.
Requirements for a Minor in English
|EL-123||Forms of Literature: Poetry and Drama||3|
|Select four English Electives||12|
EL-123. Forms of Literature: Poetry and Drama. 3 Credits.
Designed to initiate and develop understanding and appreciation of the nature, properties, and traditions of poetry and drama and to stimulate critical interest in these literary forms by establishing standards of judgment and evaluation. Prerequisites: CM-115 CM-117 OR CM-120.
EL-134. Fiction. 3 Credits.
Designed to initiate and develop understanding and appreciation of the nature, properties, and traditions of prose fiction and to stimulate critical interest in this literary form by establishing standards of judgment and evaluation. Prerequisites: CM-115 CM-117 OR CM-120.
EL-201. Survey of English Literature I. 3 Credits.
A study of major works in British literature from the Old English period to the late eighteenth century, with emphasis on literary forms, genres, and themes, as well as key linguistic, cultural, and historical contexts. Required of all English majors. Prerequisites: EL-123 AND EL-134.
EL-202. Survey of English Literature II. 3 Credits.
A study of major works of British literature from the Romantic Era to the present, focusing on thematic concerns and aesthetic innovations within British literary production in relation to the socio-historic development of the cultures of Great Britain and its Commonwealth. Required of all English majors. Prerequisites: EL-123 AND EL-134.
EL-254. Dramatic Writing Workshop. 3 Credits.
EL-293. Today's Film Scene. 3 Credits.
Students will meet in Manhattan to view and analyze contemporary films, often before they are released to the general public. At times the film makers are likely to participate. The course will give students a knowledge of the contemporary film scene as well as skills in film analysis. Prerequisites: CM-115 CM-117 OR CM-120.
EL-295. Co-Op. 3 Credits.
EL-304. Medieval English Literature. 3 Credits.
Survey of the Old English period (499-1066), covering selected prose and poetry, including Beowulf, and the Middle English period (1066-1485), surveying the works of Chaucer, Langland, the Gawain poet, Malory and others. (Group 1) Prerequisites: EL-123 OR EL-134.
EL-305. Chaucer. 3 Credits.
EL-311. The Renaissance: Major Texts. 3 Credits.
Interpreting the term "texts" broadly (as any important intellectual or artistic productions emerging from the variously and often vaguely defined era called the Renaissance), this course examines crucial literary works-including Don Quixote, Hamlet, the sonnets of Petrarch, and Calderon's Life is a Dream-as well as important artists (Giotto, Michelangelo, Leonardo, and Raphael) and philosophers (Descartes and Pascal, among others) of the period. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 1).
EL-313. Renaissance Drama. 3 Credits.
EL-314. Elizabethan and Jacobean Drama. 3 Credits.
A study of important dramatists, from Marlowe to Ford, excluding Shakespeare. Revenge tragedies, history plays and city comedies are examined both as literature and as plays intended for performance. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 2).
EL-321. 17th Century English Literature. 3 Credits.
Prose and non-dramatic poetry from Donne to Milton. Students read, discuss, analyze and debate issues reflected in literature from a variety of genres and sources, ranging from religious meditations to secular poetry, political pamphlets and philosophical essays, considering the social and religious issues raging at that time and today. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 2).
EL-331. English Romanticism. 3 Credits.
An exploration of major trends in English Romanticism with particular attention to the question of why writers of this era had such an explosive effect on the course of English literature. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 3).
EL-334. Victorian Prose and Poetry. 3 Credits.
EL-345. Gothic Literature. 3 Credits.
The Gothic mode in fiction has been popular for over two centuries. This course explores stories and novels, from The Castle of Otranto to The Exorcist, that reflect crucial elements of the genre. We will be reading all forms of the Gothic-supernatural, mechanical, and psychological. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134.
EL-348. American Literature to 1870. 3 Credits.
Two elements of the American Dream have been present from the very beginning-freedom and opportunity. We will explore the earliest treatments of those ideas and others in works from authors such as John Smith and Edgar Allan Poe. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 3).
EL-353. The American Short Story. 3 Credits.
EL-354. American Drama. 3 Credits.
An exploration of works by important American playwrights-including O'Neill, Williams, Hansberry, Mamet, and Wilson-this course examines how plays present universal concerns of family, identity, and the search for meaning, as well as specifically American themes of race, class, and gender. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 4).
EL-356. Modern American Poetry. 3 Credits.
A study of the lives and works of selected American poets, including Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, T.S. Eliot, William Carlos Williams, and Sylvia Plath. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 4).
EL-358. Contemporary Literature. 3 Credits.
EL-363. Modern British Novelists. 3 Credits.
Studying the work of modern and post-colonial writers like Conrad, Forster, Woolf, Mansfield, Amis, and Smith, this course examines topics such as colonialism and war, perspectives on ethnicity and gender, and the role of the artist's voice in society. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 4).
EL-368. Modern and Post-Modern Fiction. 3 Credits.
Through the study of writers such as Woolf, Kafka, Pynchon, DeLillo, and Marquez, this course examines the cultural and historical trends that gave rise to the literary responses know as modernism and post-modernism. We will look at upheavals of politics, class, and geography, revolutions of mind and culture, and breakthroughs in technology and artistic production that caused writers to confront old ideas in new ways, and to use their new manners of expression to impact how we see and value the world. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134 (GROUP 4).
EL-401. World Literature. 3 Credits.
EL-403. Great Books. 3 Credits.
Designed to provide a background in intellectual history and provoke consideration of ethics and values, this course studies texts fundamental to the Western literary tradition and to a liberal education. Writers include Homer, Plato, St. Augustine, Machiavelli, Cervantes, Rousseau, Nietzsche, and Dostoevsky. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134.
EL-420. Contemporary Theatre. 3 Credits.
EL-450. Capstone Seminar. 3 Credits.
A required seminar on a topic in English or American literature. As part of its content, the course will provide an introduction to literary theory and criticism applicable to the seminar's focus. Students will engage in extended research and write and present a capstone thesis. Prerequisites: EL-123 EL-134 (SENIORS ONLY).
EL-473. Shakespeare: From the Page to the Stage. 3 Credits.
Since Shakespeare's plays were intended to be performed live, not read in silence, we will both critically analyze a selection of his works and then bring the texts alive in performance, employing both original theatrical practices and modern acting techniques. (Group 2) Prerequisites: EL-123 EL-134.
EL-493. Film Noir: Dark Side of American Film. 3 Credits.
An introduction to this American Film genre with reference to its origins in European films and painting of the 1920's and 1930's, and in American hard-boiled detective fiction of the 1930's, as well as to its significance to the development of Hollywood and today's mass media. Prerequisites: EL-123, EL-134.