Department of
English and World Literatures

Read the world in the heart of New York City.

The English and World Literature major understands the power of the written word across genres, histories, and cultures. Our curriculum encompasses world literature, creative writing, and emerging media. You will find classes on Chaucer and Shakespeare here, but you could also take courses on Caribbean or African literature, writing creative nonfiction, and the films of Pedro Almodovar over the course of your college career.

EWL majors choose among three concentrations. Inside the classroom, our Literature students study, contextualize and critically write about world literature. The Creative Writing students work with and in relation to others through the workshop model. Our Literature and Media students engage with a variety of media forms including film, television, and emerging technologies. Students may choose a double concentration or a complementary minor. 

Attention to career development is integrated into our curriculum: students develop critical reading, writing, research, and thinking skills essential for success not only in their academic work but also in their professional lives beyond the classroom.  Majors are encouraged to individualize their curriculum through independent studies and to broaden their global perspective through study abroad. Many of our students double major or minor at the college, finding that the skills gained in English and World Literature extend to all their academic and creative pursuits. Some seniors choose to end their coursework with a major, independent research project in an honor’s thesis.

Outside of the classroom, our students publish The Carson Review, experience the vibrant literary culture of New York City, and intern throughout the metro area, including at Rolling Stone, The New York Times and other prestigious newspapers, magazines, and media outlets. Some seniors opt to pursue a joint BA/MS in Publishing to get an early start on their careers. By the time they graduate, majors are well prepared for graduate school or to pursue careers in advertising, communications, creative writing, journalism, law, media studies, public relations, publishing, and many other fields. Our alumni succeed in graduate school and in  countless professions and have even  published award-winning novels.