The Bowdoin College English Department approaches literature with an open and eclectic spirit, combining the pleasures of literary reading with the rigors of an intellectual discipline. Its goal is to give students the knowledge and skill to be active, sophisticated, and resourceful readers, whatever their eventual career goals.
Students in the department learn about the transformations of English writing across historical periods and in varying cultural contexts, gaining crucial skills in careful interpretation and clear writing while learning about new ways of understanding literature and culture. They are given the opportunity to read British, American, Scottish, Irish, and Caribbean literature, be trained as creative writers and literary theorists, and take courses that contribute to programs or curricula in Africana Studies, Gender & Women's Studies, Environmental Studies, and Gay and Lesbian Studies.
English Department faculty are diverse in their research and publications