English

Department Chair:Madhu Mitra

Faculty: Matthew Callahan, Mara Faulkner OSB, Jessica Harkins,Matthew Harkins, Cynthia Malone, Luke Mancuso OSB, Ozzie Mayers, Madhu Mitra, Michael Opitz, Christina Shouse-Tourino, Steven Thomas

The department of English offers traditional and innovative courses to meet the needs of both liberal arts and pre-professional students. We prepare majors for a wide range of careers as well as for further study of literature. We also work closely withthe education department to help English majors with education minors meet state licensing requirements. The department encourages students to participate in the college’s International Studies Programs or to pursue independent studies abroad.

By studying literature in English, students gain insight into experiences and ways of thinking and feeling different from their own. As a result, they come to perceive the shared humanity of people as well as the differences determined by such circumstances as gender, race, and class. These insights foster cooperation and community, both in the classroom and in the larger world.

The English department teaches students to read thoughtfully and perceptively, to listen carefully, to analyze critically, and to express their ideas logically, clearly, and precisely. Through exposure to theoretical and critical debates, students learn various ways of interpreting and analyzing literature. Exploring literature – poetry, drama, fiction, and the essay – students develop an understanding of the growing and rapidly changing world of contemporary English studies. Courses include excellent writers who have been excluded from the literary mainstream in addition to traditionally respected British and American authors.

Through analytical and creative writing, students practice a variety of literary forms and develop their own talent. Through reading, writing, and discussing, students discover the values inherent in literary works and the theories which shape our interpretation of them. Students also come to a clearer and deeper awareness of their own values as they develop an individual voice to express them.

Assessment

The English Department conducts regular assessment of student learning in the major. Methods of assessment include: a yearly analysis of student sample essays, a survey of seniors’ perceptions of the curriculum, and focus-group interviews for graduating seniors.

Major

The English department offers concentrations in literature and English communication arts/literature for 5-12 education.

Concentration in Literature (40 credits)

Required Courses:
8 credits of ENGL 221-223:
          221: World Literatures
          222: Literatures in English
          223: Literatures of the Americas
4 credits of ENGL 243: Literary Theory and Criticism
4 credits of ENGL 311: Writing Essays
4 credits of ENGL 365: Capstone
Theory and Culture
Capstone
20 credits of English electives
          At least 16 credits must be in upper-division courses
          Students may apply only one course from 120-124 toward the major
          Students must have sophomore standing to enroll in 300-level courses

Admission Requirements

Students may apply to the department: (1) if they possess at least average college skills in speech, reading, and writing; (2) if they have completed four credits from courses numbered 130-134 and earned four other English credits above that level at CSB/SJU; and (3) if they have a 2.0 cumulative grade-point average in major coursework. The department may also request an interview.

Concentration in English – Communication Arts/Literature for 5-12 Education Licensure (44 credits)
Students in this program meet the same requirements as do other English majors. Secondary-education minors must also meet the requirements of the education department. Students are strongly encouraged to contact an English secondary education advisor as soon as possible in their college career, preferably as first-year students.

Students who transfer to these colleges should see an English secondary-education advisor before registering for classes. Students should contact both the education and the English departments for detailed information on their programs.

Required Courses:
4 credits ENGL 122: Fiction and Poetry
4 credits ENGL 243: Literary Theory and Criticism
4 credits ENGL 311: Writing Essays
4 credits of coursework under each of the following clusters:
          Literature and Literary History – ENGL 352: Shakespeare
          Theory and Culture – ENGL 387: English Language (Linguistics)
          Capstone – EDUC 362: Student Teaching

To meet state requirements and fulfill the additional requirements listed under the Concentration in Literature, education minors must also take the following courses:
4 credits ENGL 342: British Literature after 1700
4 credits ENGL 346: American Literature to 1865
4 credits ENGL 383: Post-Colonial Literature or ENGL 382: Race and Ethnicity in U.S. Literatures 
Those students who complete the minor may also count 2 credits of COMM 200: Public Speaking, 2 credits of COMM 252: Listening, and 4 credits of COMM 103: Mass Communication and Society towards their major.

See also the education department’s listing of courses required for a 5-12 licensure.
The Communication Arts/Literature 5-12 licensure minor is under revision. Students should check with the English department for the current requirements.

Minor: (20 credits)

Writing Minor:
12 credits of writing courses within the English major. Students may substitute COMM 245: Introduction to Media Writing and COMM 345: Advanced Media Writing
8 additional elective English credits
The English department strongly recommends that students take English 311.

English Minor:
20 credits of English courses, including at least 12 at the upper-division level.
The English Department strongly recommends that students take English 311.
Students may apply only one course from 120-124 toward the minor.

Courses (ENGL)

100-Level Courses

The department of English offers a variety of 100-level courses in order to introduce students to critical reading skills, analytical thinking, and competent writing. Students have the opportunity to learn methods for understanding literary genres, history, and the crafts of poetry, fiction and nonfiction. Faculty members are committed to both the traditional canon of literature and to the expansion of the traditional canon through attention to the literaturesof women, minorities, and non-Western cultures. Faculty members usually supplement the study of literary texts withconsideration of other cultural forms—examples might include paintings, photography, music, film, video, popular culture—and with significant texts from other fields, including history, philosophy, psychology and the social sciences. Course content will vary from course to course, and not all 100-level courses may be offered each semester. Consult the English Department Course Description Booklet for a description of each semester’s offerings.

  • Students may apply only one course from 120-124 toward the major or minor.

120 Fiction.
This course is an introduction to fiction with emphases on close reading, critical thinking, discussion and writing skills.  Course topic and content vary from course to course; not all 120-level courses will be offered each semester.

121 Fiction and Film.
This course is an introduction to fiction and film with emphases on close reading, critical thinking, discussion and writing skills.  Course topic and content vary from course to course; not all 120-level courses will be offered each semester.

122 Fiction and Poetry.
This course is an introduction to fiction and poetry with emphases on close reading, critical thinking, discussion and writing skills.  Course topic and content vary from course to course; not all 120 courses will be offered each semester.

123 Poetry.
This course is an introduction to poetry with emphases on close reading, critical thinking, discussion and writing skills.  Course topic and content vary from course to course; not all 120-level courses will be offered each semester.

124 Cultural Studies.
This course introduces students to methods for understanding literary genres, history and elements of popular culture by applying insights drawn from the field of Cultural Studies.  This course will expand upon the study of traditional literary texts by examining other forms of cultural discourse -- paintin, photography, music, film, video and other elements of cultural discourse; not all 120-level courses will be offered each semester.

185 Special Topics.
This introductory-level course fosters close reading, critical thinking, discussion and writing skills across a variety of genres -- from fiction and poetry to film, pop music, autobiography, blogs, travel, and beyond.  The course topic and content vary from course to course; not all 185 courses will be offered each semester.

Gateway Courses

221 World Literature. (4)
In this series, students read World Literatures, often in translation. Course topic, content, and historical period vary from course to course; not all 221 courses will e offered each semester. No prerequisites.

222 Literatures in English. (4)
Literatures in English is a topics course. Each version of this course will investigate texts with an historical breadth of 75 to 100 years. Subject may include texts from England, and/or Anglophone literatures from various English-speaking countries (India, Ireland, Australia, etc.). They may also address and investigate questions of literary or cultural continuity and boundaries within a chosen 75 to 100 year historical period. No prerequisites.

223 Literature of the Americas. (4)
Courses taught under the generic heading, Literature of the Americas, might focus solely on literature written in the United States or by U.S. writers; however, the title challenges the common notion that the United States is America and America is the United States and encourages the development of courses whose literary and historical content spans North, Central, and South America and the Caribbean. Literary texts will be situated in relevant social, political, and economic contexts, and some versions will include film, art, music, and other kinds of material culture. No prerequisites.

243 Literary Theory and Criticism. (4)
Introduction to literary and cultural theory. Students apply theoretical texts or concepts to literary or cultural texts (e.g., novels, films, television, popular arts, clothing, architecture, and public spaces).

Writing

Consult the English Department Course Description Booklet for a description of each semester’s offerings.

211 Writing Well. (4)
Practice in writing for various audiences and in a variety of nonfiction forms. Attention to grammar, mechanics, paragraph development, etc. Prerequisite: completion of First-year Symposium.

213 Seminar in Creative Writing. (4)
Workshop/seminar in the principles and techniques of writing any two genres such as short fiction, poetry, mixed genres and creative non-fiction prose. Consult the English Department Course Description Booklet for a specific description of each semester’s offering.

220 Investigative Writing. (4)
The theory and practice of research in literary and cultural studies in preparation for a written project of the student’s choice—literary or cultural critique, memoir, historical fiction, biography, etc. This course is an excellent preparation for an honors thesis in the humanities.

311 Writing Essays. (4)
Theory and practice of writing longer nonfiction forms (essays, articles) dealing with complex subject matter. Study of the rhetorical strategies used in non-technical writing drawn from a variety of disciplines. Concentration on development of the student writer’s voice and style. Prerequisite: Completion of First-year Symposium and junior standing.

313 Advanced Seminar in Creative Writing. (4)
Advanced workshop/seminar in a particular genre such as poetry, fiction, mixed genres or creative non-fiction prose. Consult the English Department Course Description Booklet for a specific description of each semester’s offering.

315 Writing: Special Topics. (4)
Theory and practice of writing special genres—such as biography or memoir, normally not included in other writing courses, or workshop/seminar in editing and publishing, business writing, technical writing, etc. See the English Department Course Description Booklet for a description of a specific semester’s offering. This course may also be cross-listed with writing courses in other disciplines.

Literature and Literary History

Consult the English Department Course Description Booklet for a description of each semester’s offerings.

325 Studies in Drama. (4)
Study of a number of plays related to one another by theme, historic or national provenance, subgenre, or by some other significant connection.

341 Studies in British Literature to 1700. (4)
Course offerings under this title might be organized by theme, by historical period, by region or by genre.

342 Studies in British Literature after 1700. (4)
Course offerings under this title might be organized by theme, by historical period, by region or by genre. 

346 United States Literature to 1865. (4)
Reading and analysis of prose and poetry from pre-Colonial times to the Civil War.

347 United States Literature after 1865. (4)
Reading and analysis of prose and poetry from the Civil War to about 1920.

352 Shakespeare. (4)
Representative plays.

355 Studies in Individual Authors. (4)
Study of several works by one or two authors. Works in translation acceptable.

361 British Novel to 1900. (4)
Longer prose fiction from Defoe to Eliot and Hardy.

362 American Novel to 1920. (4)
A selection of American novels to 1920.

366 Studies in Modern Literature. (4)
A selection of fiction, poetry and/or other forms written in late 19th to mid-20th centuries.

367 Studies in Contemporary Literature. (4)
A selection of fiction, poetry and/or other forms written in the past 30-50 years.

381 Literature by Women. (4)
Selection of works written by women.

382 Race and Ethnicity in U.S. Literatures. (4)
A study of literature from several of the ethnic, racial and other groups that make up United States culture. Some attention to the historical and social contexts in which this literature arises.

383 Post-Colonial Literature. (4)
A study of literature, partly in translation, from African, Asian and the Caribbean countries. The course focuses on the specific historical and cultural contexts in which these literatures arise.

385 Studies in Literature. (4)
See listing under Special Courses.

Theory and Culture

Consult the English Department Course Description Booklet for a description of each semester’s offerings.

286 Introduction to Film Studies. (4)
This course offers an introduction to film as a medium of communication and representation. Possible topics include but are not limited to a survey of the development of film and the movie business, techniques of acting, directing, cinematography, narrative style, and film theory. The vocabulary of cinema and representative films of the first hundred years of filmmaking is covered.

369 Studies in Critical Theory. (4)
Study of selected critical theories and application, using such approaches. Recommended for majors planning for graduate English studies.

386 Studies in Film. (4)
This course analyzes film through one or more theoretical aspects. Psychoanalytic, feminist, cultural studies, and reader-response theories are among possible approaches offered. A selection of films is viewed for illustrative and interpretive purposes.

387 Introduction to Linguistics. (4)
This course covers the history and development of the English language, its grammar and structure, and also language acquisition and use in society.

388 Studies in Popular Culture. (4)
Critical reading of such popular arts and practices as film, television, music, newspapers, etc.

Capstone

365 Current Issues in Literary Studies. (4)
Explores the history and current state of literary studies. Students analyze and discuss significant literary texts; they examine debates that have shaped the discipline of literary studies; and they complete a substantial research project. Thematic focus of the course varies with instructor.

HONR 398 Honors Senior Essay, Research or Creative Project. (4)
Required for graduation with “Distinction in English.” Prerequisite: HONR 396 and approval of the department chair and director of the Honors Thesis program. For further information see HONR 398.

EDUC 362 Student Teaching. (4-16)
Observations and supervised teaching in the student’s major subject at area schools. Full-time off-campus student teaching assignments arranged by director of 5-12/K-12 student teaching. Four credits may be counted toward the capstone requirement.

Students may also fulfill the capstone requirement by submitting a petition to count a course in the major that serves as a culminating experience of the major. In special cases, the student may submit a petition to count a course outside the English department which is closely related to his or her work in the major and fulfills this capstone function.

Special Courses

271 Individual Learning Project. (1-4)
Supervised reading or research at the lower-division level. Permission of department chair required. Consult department for applicability towards major requirements. Not available to first-year students.

371 Individual Learning Project. (1-4)
Supervised reading or research at the upper-division level. Permission of department chair and completion and/or concurrent registration of 12 credits within the department required. Consult department for applicability towards major requirements. Not available to first-year students.

397 Internship. (4)
Integration of the skills of the English major, a liberal arts background and the expectations of a career. Individually tailored by the student with the advice and approval of a department advisor and the college's director of internships. Four credits may be counted toward the capstone requirement. S/U grading only.