Majors & Minors


Engage in critical thinking and improve your communication skills by studying the literature and cultures of the English-speaking world.


Helene Meyers

Helene Meyers

Professor of English & Chair


Helene Meyers

Helene Meyers

Professor of English & Chair

English (Credit: Southwestern University)

Storytelling is a powerful means of representing ways of thinking and being, teaching cultural norms, sharing ideas, and, of course, entertaining audiences. In turn, the practice of reading, discussing, and writing about texts past and present deepens our understanding and appreciation of literature’s role in shaping and reflecting society.

At Southwestern, majoring or minoring in English opens doors to a range of worldviews and experiences. Here, you can 

  • analyze Shakespeare’s tragedies on the page and on the stage
  • view world cinema or Hollywood romantic comedies with a more critical eye
  • discuss the representation of gender in Restoration drama or Romantic verse
  • explore the complex and divergent perspectives in the fiction of Mary Shelley, Charlotte Brontë, Mark Twain, Toni Morrison, Chinua Achebe, and Michael Chabon

You’ll learn valuable 21st-century skills of interpretation, analysis, research, and writing, and you’ll graduate ready to apply those skills to a broad spectrum of personal and professional pursuits. In addition to graduate study in English, our alumni have gone on to a variety of careers: teaching in K–12 and higher education, humanities research, social-media marketing, content writing, law, fundraising, instructional design, event planning, and project management.


Featured Alumni Stories

Colombia One

Our Shared Humanity

Darrel Young ’61 reflects on his experiences as a first-wave volunteer in the Peace Corps.

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Return to editingSylvia J. Sydow Kerrigan ’86 | Distinguished Professional

Sylvia J. Sydow Kerrigan ’86

Distinguished Professional

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Heath Dollar ’92

Without Work, There Are No Kolaches

Heath Dollar ’92, an educator, musician, and published author, wins the 2018 Texas Observer Short Story Contest.

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English News

Dr. Jim Kilfoyle

Pursuing a Passion and Embracing Discovery

Associate Professor of English Jim Kilfoyle shares his experiences as a student and teacher of English.

Sam Russek '19 interns in New York City

The Working Artists of New York City

Sam Russek ’19 describes his time in New York City interning with the Awards Department of PEN America and Bloomsbury Publishing, mingling with working writers, and taking in all the Big Apple has to offer.

When Lizzie Barry ’21 arrived at Southwestern, she already had at least one major goal on her agenda: to study abroad.

A Broad World Experience

Lizzie Barry ’21 relishes her semester abroad in London.