Learn to read with imagination and insight, write with clarity and grace, and explore the deeper questions of the human experience.

English literature majors engage a wide range of texts from varied cultures, genres, historical periods, and perspectives. Pacific's literature courses are small and intensive in order to build the skills of critical-thinking, analytical writing, and rhetorical analysis. With the guidance and support of our literature faculty, students read extensively across more than a thousand years of literature, engage complex concepts through sundry theoretical frameworks, and perfect the art of argumentation.

Take courses to explore the literary landscape from a range of vantage points — from the stakes illuminated by new work in disability, indigeneity, and postcolonial studies to the political and gendered sensibilities of William Shakespeare's and Oscar Wilde's stages. Work closely with professors and archivists to design significant research projects that recover lost voices of our region. Study abroad in Asia, Australia, Europe or South America; teach English in China, Korea or Japan; and study domestically with facilitated research trips to the award-winning Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

“It is still important to get out the stories of people who may not be heard, but, more importantly, may only be heard in a certain light. I want to create a career out of [reading and writing] so that I can actually do what I love, as opposed to just doing a job for the sake of getting money.”

— Kia Addison '20

Publications & Conferences

Unique to Pacific's program is the opportunity to serve on a professional academic publication, IJURCA: The International Journal of Undergraduate Research and Creative Inquiry, as well as meet with acclaimed scholars as part of Pacific's Visiting Writers Series. To develop your craft, teach others as a writing consultant with CLASS or as a mentor to peers in the First-Year Seminar. In the heart of Portland's literary culture, come and develop a rich, interdisciplinary portfolio of original research and find your community of readers here.

English Literature Capstone Project

English literature students create a final artifact as a testament to their accrued body of knowledge and a portfolio of transferable skills bridging them into professional lives as writers, artists, scholars, editors, and content creators. Learn more about the capstone experience in English literature.

 

Contact Us

Department of English | Pacific University
Bates House & Abigail Scott Duniway House
2043 College Way 
Forest Grove, Oregon 97116

Headlines

MFA faculty poet Shara McCallum's sixth book, No Ruined Stone, has won the 2022 Hurston/Wright Foundation Legacy Award. The Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Foundation’s Annual Legacy Awards Ceremony honors the best in Black literature in the United States and around the globe.

Science fiction author Kate Sheeran Swed MFA ’14 writes books about reckless heroines and messy adventures, centering stories that question how today's actions will impact future generations. 

Shivanee Ramlochan, Rajiv Mohabir, Rhony Bhopla

Rhony Bhopla MFA '22 to lead Mapmakers Alumni Institute