Majoring in English
Our English curriculum covers the globe and the centuries: everything from medieval Anglo-Saxon epics to 21st-century African novels. We sharpen minds and unleash imaginations. By reading a wide range of texts critically and imaginatively, you develop writing, thinking and speaking skills that will serve you throughout your life and in any line of work. Our courses examine works of literature and other media in their most important contexts: historical, cultural, linguistic, socio-political and philosophical. You also have the opportunity to study abroad in one of many countries, including England, Scotland, Ireland, India, Italy, Denmark and New Zealand, and we welcome double majors.
You may additionally choose to concentrate in creative writing or the study of race and ethnicity. We also offer a wide array of interdisciplinary courses that combine literature with environmental studies, film, gender and women's studies, history, linguistics, music, Slavic studies and other fields of interest. In recent years, students have had an opportunity to interact with outstanding visiting artists like Art Spiegelman, David Sedaris, Jhumpa Lahiri, Junot Díaz and Dinaw Mengestu.
After Connecticut College
As an English major, you have a wide range of career opportunities because the creative and analytical skills you acquire are transportable and adaptable. Our majors become physicians, choreographers and Hollywood show runners, as well as writers, teachers and lawyers. In graduate school, they go on to study everything from public health, international relations and business to creative writing, education and law. Whatever your interests, you gain an understanding of human culture and the skills that empower you to succeed in a competitive world.
What can you do with a majorcertificate in English?
Here are some of the positions our graduates have gone on to hold:
Q: Why Connecticut College?
A: Conn stood out for two reasons: the honor code and CELS (the College’s career program). Those two programs, as well as my experience visiting Conn and sitting in on classes, made it clear to me that this was a place that would fully support both my intellectual and personal growth.
Q: Your most challenging or rewarding class?
A: My most challenging class, and also the most rewarding, was the Alice Munro seminar that I took with Professor Julie Rivkin, a Munro expert. She brought such a genuine and intense passion for the work that it encouraged me (and the rest of the class) to put maximum effort into every assignment and class discussion. It was both challenging and fascinating to engage with Munro’s immaculate and haunting short stories.
Q: What extracurricular activities do you participate in?
A: As a Roth Writing Center tutor, helping my peers with all aspects of the writing process across all subjects has been one of my most rewarding experiences at Conn. I am also an admission fellow, an Honor Council representative, a student adviser and president of Scuds, Conn’s long form improv comedy group.
Q: Did you do a funded internship?
A: CELS, the College’s career program, has played a huge role in my professional development and career planning. My CELS adviser's guidance was instrumental in helping me land my dream College-funded internship — doing marketing and providing web content for a professional writing center in Boston. I got to interact with professional writers, publish some of my own work and grow professionally.
Q: What are your career plans?
A: Right after graduation, I'll start an internship as a member of the marketing team for the Lowell Spinners, a Boston Red Sox minor league affiliate. Looking further down the road, I plan on trying to get a job with a publishing company in New York and continuing to write as much as possible.
- Humans and Other Animals in 19th-Century American Literature
- Writing the Short Story
- African Novels
- Nomads, Shamans, and Mystics: Imagining Central Asia
- Race, Nation, and Empire in the 18th Century
- Thrills, Chills, and Tears: Black Genre Fiction
- Vladimir Nabokov: Mandarin, Magician, Ecrivain
- Love and Sex in the Middle Ages
- The Literature of Passing