The Franklin College English department is committed to the careful study of the individual expression and cultural values found in English, American, and world literatures.
The English department is one of Franklin College’s most exciting intellectual communities. Our faculty of dedicated teacher-scholars share with students their expertise in, and enthusiasm for, literature in a variety of genres, periods, and cultures—works drawn from the traditional canon to the works of emerging artists, from Greek tragedy to graphic novels, from Shakespeare to postmodern poetry. Small class sizes mean professors get to know their students and can engage with them in intense debates and deep analyses of literary works that continue outside the classroom.
Download the English Major Handout (PDF)
By honing a diverse set of reading and writing skills, the English department’s majors and minors recognize the artistic achievements, insights, and possibilities inherent in literature to create their own meaningful work as they prepare for professional positions, graduate study, and civic engagement.
In addition to their commitment to the classroom, faculty in the English department maintain active scholarly agendas, publishing their research and presenting at major national and international conferences on a wide variety of topics, including the intersections of narrative theory and gender theory; the limitations of humanity in Shakespeare’s Richard II; zombie fiction and films; modernist irony as a response to colonial exhibitions; flipped classroom pedagogy; landscape and medieval gender roles; and deforestation in contemporary Anglophone Caribbean literature. In addition, our creative writing faculty have won awards and national attention for their work.
Why English at Franklin?
- Dynamic classroom experiences. FC English professors use a variety of approaches that focus on how language and literary forms recreate both individual experiences and the large, impersonal forces that shape cultures and historical periods. In so doing, we seek in our classes to understand the many varieties of the human condition. In addition to taking courses with our award-winning faculty, students benefit from the creative writing program’s reading series which brings talented poets, fiction writers, memoirists, and playwrights to teach and study with us each year.
- Experiences beyond the classroom. Not only do English majors learn a great deal in the classroom, they also take part in activities related to the discipline. Such activities regularly include working on the editorial board of the college literary journal, the Apogee (founded in 1961); attending performances and creative-writing readings; and participating in other events in and around Franklin, Indianapolis, Bloomington, Louisville, and elsewhere in the region.
- Global engagement. With opportunities to study abroad during entire semesters, during the college’s four-week Immersive Term, or over the summer, English majors have recently taken courses in England, France, Spain, Costa Rica, Germany, Uganda, Japan, and elsewhere.
- Interdisciplinary commitment. In keeping with the college’s strong interdisciplinary character, English majors frequently choose to pursue a second major or a minor in disciplines such as creative writing, elementary, French, history, multimedia journalism, psychology, or Spanish. Recent English courses have been cross-listed in theatre and the liberal arts program, and students may count an upper-level course in French or Spanish literature toward their English degree.
- Connecting passion with work. Our faculty advisers are committed to helping students find careers in fields that excite them. Recent graduates have used their English degrees to pursue rewarding careers in teaching, publishing, health care, marketing, business, the performing and creative arts, communications, technical writing, and non-profit management. Others have gone on to graduate programs in English, law, divinity, library science, and counseling.