Welcome to the Department of English

Because we teach the arts of rhetoric, English faculty have a special obligation to defend and promote the open exchange of ideas, and to expose and resist deliberate misrepresentations of the past. We honor the right to free speech and will oppose the intrusion of hate speech and hateful symbols of oppression on our campus. Since we recognize that the College of Charleston, like the rest of the country, has yet to shed the vestiges of our racist history, we stand committed to working toward a fully diverse and inclusive educational environment. Read More.

Read our faculty and staff's Statement of Solidarity and Commitment to Antiracism here

 

 

Sophomore English major Adam Dorsheimer, recipient of the Lancelot Minor Harris Scholarship, explains what this financial support makes possible. 

Check out our student opportunites page to learn more on how you can enhance your college experience as an English major!

Why English?

If you are a student reading this page, you probably already know why you want to study English.

You already feel the pull of the word and the image. You already know the pleasure afforded by language shaped into stories, poems, memoirs, and essays. You already experience the thrill of entering other worlds, adopting other perspectives, and grappling with big questions. You already experience the satisfaction of getting a sentence just right, expressing your idea, articulating your vision.

What you might not yet know is that English represents a pragmatic course of study as well as a fulfilling one. After all, there are some widespread misconceptions about how English majors fare on the job market. When you tell friends that you want to study English, some of them might have asked, “what are you going to do with that – teach?”...[Read more...]

 


2021 Distinguished Faculty Awards

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Our department is so proud of our award winners. 

 

While we were not able to gather in person to recognize the achievements of our colleagues, please join us in honoring them online via the 2021 Celebration of Faculty Virtual Program.


 

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Every year the English Department at the College of Charleston celebrates the work of our seniors. COVID-19 has brought many, many changes to this past year, but this celebration is one thing that we’re happy to continue.

The showcase of student work features 19 student projects: their scholarship, creative writing, research and technical writing. 

https://englishday.unwrite.org/

 


Fall 2021 registration 

Advising season for Fall 2021 registration has begun! It’s time to get your plans in place and meet with your advisor!

 Our Fall offerings include a number of exciting special topics courses, alongside returning favorites.

 You’ll find 300-level classes on: 

  • Poetry II
  • Fiction Writing II
  • African American Literature
  • Writing and Literacy
  • The Eighteenth Century
  • The Romantic Period
  • Studies in American Film
  • Literature and Consent in Renaissance England
  • Iconic Heroines in Novel and Film
  • The Literary Magazine, Publishing, and Editing
  • Slow Cinema
  • Technical Writing
  • Technical Editing
  • English Language: Grammar and History
  • Jews and Comedy
  • Writing for the Web
  • Reading for Writers

The Fall 2021 English department list of courses, including detailed descriptions, is now available, along with a listing of classes and the requirements they fulfill.

To determine your registration entry time, you can check this schedule. You will need to know your current number of credits, which you can find in DegreeWorks. Registration begins for seniors on Tuesday, March 23, 2021.


ANNOUNCING A New Departmental History Podcast

Episode 1: Prof. Eugene Hunt 

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As part of Black History Month, the Department of English is pleased to announce the first entry in a newly-launched multimedia series focused on neglected departmental history. The podcast, which English major Tony Jackson (Lit & Film concentration) produced, shares the story of Prof. Eugene Hunt, the first Black professor in the English department. Prof. Hunt (1916-1994), who joined the college in 1972, was the second Black faculty member at the College and the second tenured Black professor at CofC. As Jackson's podcast explains, Prof. Hunt began his career teaching for many years at Burke High School (1941-72), and he retired from the College in 1992. The 24-minute podcast shares material from interviews Tony conducted with Dr. Larry Carlson (CofC English professor 1979-2009), Dr. Caroline Hunt (CofC English professor 1976- 2008, current Emerita Adjunct Instructor), and Dr. Millicent Brown (who played a direct role in desegregating SC state schools, in part through “Millicent Brown, et al v. School District 20” [Charleston, SC, 1963]). Please take a listen! Thanks go to Prof. Valerie Frazier and Prof. Joe Kelly—and especially to Tony Jackson. The department honors Prof. Eugene Hunt's ground-breaking service to the College (including his role in the development of the African American Studies Program) and to the Department of English.


Have you heard about the new concentration Literature and Film?

The concentration inLiterature and Film provides a rigorous education in writing and analysis through the study of a wide variety of literary and cultural texts, from medieval manuscripts to modern films. Strong writing and incisive thinking are increasingly specialized skills that are in demand in a wide variety of professional fields. Graduates of this program have gone on to careers in education, academia, journalism, marketing, publishing, copywriting, law, and medicine. 


 

 

 English Department “In the news” 

jackson-gary-photo.jpeg Congratulations to Gary Jackson on the publication of his new poetry collection, Origin Story, which was published by University of New Mexico Press on August 15! An interrogation of cultural and personal myths, these poems take us from Kansas to Korea and back again in an attempt to reconnect with estranged family and familial ghosts divided by years of diaspora. Congratulations, Gary!
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 Pres. Hsu announced late last week the premiere of a new College-sponsored documentary titled If These Walls Could Talk. The film was written and directed by Prof. Michael T. Owens, adjunct professor of English. It centers on the manifold contributions of enslaved Africans to the construction of College buildings and surrounding sites, and it highlights ongoing efforts to create a more diverse and inclusive campus community through education and racial reconciliation. The free premiere will take place on Friday, March 12, at 7pm, at the Bend, an outdoor venue on the Ashley River. One ticket per vehicle will be required for entry: Get your tickets here!

Check out the write up in The College Today!

Prof. Seaman recently interviewed Prof. Owens.

 

 

  


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CofC Celebrates Kurt Vonnegut’s ‘Slaughterhouse-Five’ and Q&A with Prof. Susan Farrell in The College Today

Former College of Charleston studio arts major Lance Miccio put brush to canvas to create 50 oil paintings depicting scenes from the novel for his exhibit, Slaughterhouse Fifty, at the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library in Indianapolis, Indiana. The exhibition originally debuted in 2019 in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the publication of Slaughterhouse-Five in 1969. And now – thanks in large part to English Professor Susan Farrell – 23 of those paintings are on display in the Addlestone Library rotunda through March 15, 2021.

“As a Vonnegut scholar who is currently writing a book about the history and writing of Slaughterhouse-Five, I was delighted to help bring the exhibit to CofC,” says Farrell, who not only wrote the Critical Companion to Kurt Vonnegut: A Literary Reference to his Life and Work (New York: Facts on File Press, 2008), but also founded the International Kurt Vonnegut Society. “I love the variety of Mr. Miccio’s paintings, their colorful and outgoing nature, and of course, the deep connection to Slaughterhouse-Five.”

 

 

 

 

 

  

Professor Valerie Frazier has been appointed the director of the 1967 Legacy Program, a multi-year initiative that aims to improve the recruitment, retention, graduation and workplace success of African American students through scholarships, enhanced and extended education support, and professional preparation, as well as research experiences around African Americans’ contribution to the College. 

See more in The College Today!

 
The College Today did a write up about our newest minor and concentration WRP (Writing, Rhetoric, and Publication).

                                   

   

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Faculty Spotlights: Bill Russell & Scott Peeples

Congratulations to Prof. Bill Russell on the publication of his book, Inventing the Critic in Renaissance England, last Friday! Published by University of Delaware Press, it "reveals that the critics of the English

Renaissance did not passively absorb their practice from Continental and classical sources but actively invented it in response to a confluence of social and intellectual factors" (book jacket). Bill will discuss his book at January's Teacher-Scholar Tuesday.

 

 

 

 

Prof. Scott Peeples' new book is out, The Man of the Crowd: Edgar Allan Poe and the City!" Read about how four American cities shaped Poe's life and writings.

"Scott Peeples has plumbed the deep psychic landscape of Poe with passion and skill, bringing us back to his writings again and again with fresh insights. The Man of the Crowd is beautifully written and remarkably adroit. A major accomplishment."—Jay Parini, author of Robert Frost and Empire of Self: A Life of Gore Vidal

 

 Alumni Spotlight: Derrick Williams

After graduating, pursuing a law career, and starting a family, Derrick Williams received a call from fellow alumni in 2013 and was offered a position on the Alumni Association Board. He reentered the College of Charleston community and has been an active member ever since, even joining the Advisory Board to the Honors College and becoming a charter member of the English department’s new Alumni Advisory Board. “Seeing all the progress the College has made, especially infrastructurally and in the different departments and programs, is amazing,” says Williams. His dedication to CofC and work ethic led to his newest role as the President of the Alumni Association. 

Read the rest of Derrick's feature article in Folio where you'll find more feature stories about alumni in our ongoing "Sequel" series.

Student Spotlight: Patrick Wohlscheid

Meet Patrick! He is a double major in English and Philosophy, with LFCS concentration. Patrick is also the President of the CofC Philosophical Society, Managing Editor of Miscellany, and involved with the English Student Advisory Group and undergraduate research. His favorite English class at the College is ENGL 202 with Dr. Carens!

Meet more of our majors on our Instagram!


 

Folio: The Department Blog

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The Department of English's department blog, Folio, features stories on alumni, current students, new professors, department events, and faculty accomplishments. If you would have an accomplishment, event, or information that you would like the department to share through Folio, tell us about it.


Department News

SEQUEL: MICHELLE ASHA COOPER
Posted on 11 February 2021 | 5:06 pm
On Wednesday, February 3rd, 2021, the Biden Administration appointed CofC alumna Dr. Michelle Asha Cooper to the position of deputy assistant secretary for postsecondary education. She will serve as acting assistant secretary, according to reports by Inside Higher Ed and...
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Sequel: Derrick Williams
Posted on 18 November 2020 | 1:20 pm
  Welcome to Sequel, a series spotlighting our talented alumni and the strides they’ve made in their field post-graduation. Alumnus Derrick Williams can attest to the fact that our lives rarely go according to plan, but that can lead us...
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Kathleen Béres Rogers: Creating Romantic Obsession: Scorpions in the Mind
Posted on 12 November 2019 | 5:00 am
Dr. Kathleen Béres Rogers published her first book this March titled Creating Romantic Obsession: Scorpions in the Mind. The text explores obsession as a mental disease and when it came to be recognized as a disease in the Romantic Era....
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Events

September 27th from 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Join Portuguese Clubs from CofC, UT Austin, University of Pittsburgh and St. Mary's University virtually for conversation and fun in Portuguese!Please email meirelesdl@cofc.edu for Zoom link. [...]
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September 27th from 7:30 pm
The Department of Theatre and Dance opens its 2021–2022 season with the play Pipeline by Dominique Morisseau.Pipeline is about Nya, an inner-city public high school teacher is committed to her stude [...]
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September 29th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
Join the Academic Advising and Planning Center for the Majors and Minors Fair! Whether you have already declared your major/minor or you are completely undecided, the Majors and Minors Fair can benefi [...]
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September 29th from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm
Are you interested in working for a company who prioritizes diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) for their employees and constituents? Kick off the Fall 2021 Career Fair [...]
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September 29th from 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm
Join the Center for Public Choice and Market Process in reading their fall 2021 book colloquium selection, Socialism Sucks: Two Economists Drink Their Way Through the Unfree World by Robert Lawson and [...]
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September 29th from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm
 Please join us for the 15th lecture in theHispanic Studies Teaching Discussion Series Innovations and Challenges in Second Language Teaching  Reading and Beyond in the L2 classroom: A [...]
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September 30th from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Join the African American Studies Program and REI on Zoom for a lecture in the Decolonizing the Curriculum Lecture Series: "Must I Teach Race?: Addressing Race & Racism in Philosophy" with Jamelia [...]
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September 30th from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
In the next 20 years, our country and world will face unprecedented challenge and complexity. Changing climate, aging populations, disease, financial crises and technologies that divide more [...]
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September 30th from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Marcus Milwright of the University of Victoria will present the free lecture, "Before the Railway: Trade and the Syrian Hajj in the Mamluk and Ottoman Periods," via Zoom. Check back for the Zoom [...]
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September 30th from 7:30 pm
The Department of Theatre and Dance opens its 2021–2022 season with the play Pipeline by Dominique Morisseau.Pipeline is about Nya, an inner-city public high school teacher is committed to her stude [...]
Read More
October 1st from 7:30 pm
The Department of Theatre and Dance opens its 2021–2022 season with the play Pipeline by Dominique Morisseau.Pipeline is about Nya, an inner-city public high school teacher is committed to her stude [...]
Read More
October 2nd from 7:30 pm
The Department of Theatre and Dance opens its 2021–2022 season with the play Pipeline by Dominique Morisseau.Pipeline is about Nya, an inner-city public high school teacher is committed to her stude [...]
Read More