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The curriculum of the English Department includes courses in all periods of American, British, and International Literature in English, as well as courses in Creative and Professional Writing and in Film Studies.  The English major offers courses that explore literary themes and genres from many different points of view.  A chronological sequence of courses enables students to become closely acquainted with the principal periods of English and American literature and thus provides them with an understanding of historical and cultural trends.  The study of literature not only enables students to become proficient in analytical reading and critical writing about literature; it also cultivates a capacity for verbal expression, logical argumentation, and close analysis of language that translates into many disciplines and careers.  English majors excel in such diverse fields as law, business, medicine, journalism, film, public relations, corporate communications, editing, publication, and teaching.

For more information on the Creative Writing track within the English major, please see this article, recently featured on the homepage of Manhattanville College:

Learning Objectives of the English Major:

Students in the English Major will demonstrate the capacity to:

      1)  Develop their own, original analysis and interpretation of literary work

      2)  Present their analysis and interpretation effectively in written form

In analyzing and interpreting literary works, students will demonstrate their ability:

(1a) to read texts actively and with literal comprehension

(1b) to identify and discuss the importance of literary techniques and elements of literary style (i.e. to perform a “close reading”)

(1c) to use terms appropriate to literary criticism

(1d) to compare a literary work to other works in its genre and from its period

(1e) to discuss a literary work in its social, political, and historical context

(1f) to apply an understanding of literary history to the comparison of works across periods and works from different national traditions

(1g) to respond to relevant literary criticism and apply relevant literary theories

In presenting their analysis and interpretation in writing, students will demonstrate their ability:

(2a) to support assertions with appropriate textual examples

(2b) to construct logically sequenced and focused arguments

(2c) to communicate ideas clearly and with grammatical correctness

(2d) to cite sources fully and properly

*The English department considers a “literary work” to include cinematic texts (i.e., films).