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Department of English

The study of English is fundamental to a liberal arts and sciences education. English Department faculty members teach students to read perceptively and critically; to understand the historical, cultural and aesthetic dimensions of language and literature; and to write with clarity and precision.  We offer courses in literature, film, composition, rhetoric, and creative writing. Read More

Student Spotlight

Shannon Haas holding video game controllers

“I didn’t really play video games or interact with video games at all during middle school and most of high school, which is rare for someone who would refer to themselves as a gamer,” Shannon Haas says, noting that these days she does in fact consider herself a gamer.

As she’s delved into the immersive world of avatars, fantastical graphics and outrageous plots, she has been struck by the hypersexualized portrayal of female characters, particularly in some of the industry’s most popular franchises. (Ever heard of Grand Theft Auto?)

After airing her frustrations in an English paper last spring, Haas decided to delve deeper into the issue at the urging of her professor, Tim Carens, who was intrigued by the subject. This summer the pair received grant funding through the College’s Summer Undergraduate Research with Faculty program to study the content of video games within the context of scholarly feminist and media studies. Haas plans to use her research as the basis for her bachelor’s essay.

“I think just the perspective of being a young woman and now a young adult, I think that really granted me some perspective to look at gaming from an outsider’s point of view,” she says. “Everything seemed more poignant. Every instance of misogyny or sexism seemed to stand out and slap me in the face.”

Read more of this article featured on The College Today.


The Department of English's annual newsletter, Folio, features stories on alumni and current students, new professors, notes on faculty and more.

Department News

English Major Elizabeth Torpey to Present at Coker College
Posted on 7 February 2017 | 8:50 am
English major Elizabeth Torpey will present a paper this month at the Coker Humanities Undergraduate Conference at Coker College in Hartsville, SC. In her paper, “Golden Worlds: A Pastoral Paradise,” Elizabeth explores how early modern poets and writers invoked the classical trope of the “golden world” to express a variety of political and philosophical positions. […]
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English Major Cathy Keaton Featured in The College Today
Posted on 4 November 2016 | 4:18 pm
The College Today published a feature on English major Cathy Keaton and her success pursuing a degree as a nontraditional student. Senior Citizen Pursues Lifelong Goal to Earn Degree
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Happy Birthday, John Keats!
Posted on 31 October 2016 | 9:02 pm
We all know that October 31st is Halloween, but did you know it was also John Keats’s birthday? In English 350, Keats, we celebrated both in style by having cupcakes and reading the decidedly macabre Isabella, or the Pot of Basil.
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English Majors Garruzzo and Rink Present at the Citadel
Posted on 28 October 2016 | 9:58 am
  Those who teach writing often find themselves invoking analogies to try and describe a certain skill. Create a “quote sandwich” we say to students in first-year academic writing. Or perhaps the stakes of a messy quote integration are clarified when we tell them to avoid the classic “hit-and-run.” Why do we do this? And does […]
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