We are home to world-class faculty who publish and present their work in the most prestigious venues. We also foster a lively culture of student research and creative work in our vibrant graduate and undergraduate programs.

The Department of English creates and publishes articles, books, collections, op-eds, databases, digital archives, story maps, podcasts, multimedia essays, museum exhibitions, new editions of famous texts, books, articles, and poetry. Our department holds special strengths in comics and cartoon studies; in the study of race, ethnicity, (post)coloniality and indigeneity; in digital humanities; and in the environmental humanities. 




Our Research Areas

19th Century American Literary Studies
19th Century British Literary Studies
African American Literary Studies
American Studies
Asian American Literary Studies
Autobiography Studies
Colonial and Postcolonial Studies
Comics and Cartoon Studies
Cultural Studies
Digital Humanities
Disability Studies
Drama and Performance Studies
Early American Literary Studies
Feminism Studies
Film and Media Studies
Gender and Sexuality Studies
Globalization Studies
Irish Literary Studies
Latino/a Studies
Literary and Critical Theory
Literature and the Environment
Literatures of the Americas
Medieval Literary Studies
Modernism, British and American
Native American Literary Studies
Poetry and Poetics
Postmodern and Contemporary Literary Studies
Race and Ethnicity
Renaissance/Early Modern Literary Studies
Restoration and 18th Century Literary Studies
Rhetoric and Composition
The Novel
Travel Writing
Visual Culture

Explore Faculty in our Research Areas

Featured Research Projects

Tara Fickle

Tara Fickle

Asian American literature has a crucial but often overlooked place in American culture. Professor Tara Fickle is conducting new archival research and creating a digital resource on a canonical Asian American literary anthology, Aiiieeeee! (1974). Her work excavates and centers unconsidered historical realities and marginalized voices. She demonstrates how Asian American literature of the post-WW2 period intersects with countercultural energies and US-Asian military conflicts in the 1970s to create new modes of writing about what it means to be a racial minority in America.

Aiiieeeee! – TARA FICKLE

professor Ben Saunders browsing comic books in a store

Ben Saunders
Penguin Classics Editions of Marvel Comics

Professor Ben Saunders is the series editor for a new collaboration between Marvel Comics and Penguin Classics, aimed at bringing early issues of classic comics like Captain America, Black Panther, and Spiderman to the renowned Penguin Imprint. Professor Saunders is the series editor, and has written the series editor’s introduction as well as introductions and endnotes to the volumes for Spiderman and Captain America.

Penguin Classics to collaborate with Marvel | Marvel

Courtney Thorsson

Courtney Thorsson
The Sisterhood

This project is centered on a new book that offers an interpretive cultural history of a Black women’s writers’ group in the 1970s that counted Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, June Jordan, and others as members. This work showcases how this group organized and worked together to inform and support one another’s careers, and in the process, fostered Black feminist activism in politics, in literature, and in academia. Written using extensive archival research and numerous personal interviews, this book promises to be a major event in the contemporary cultural history of African American writing.

The Sisterhood: Black Women's Literary Organizing, Columbia University Press (forthcoming). Learn more.

Interdisciplinary Opportunities

Opportunities for Interdisciplinary Work

English is a famously interdisciplinary subject, with our faculty regularly engaging with studies in visual media; philosophy; classics; ethnic studies; history; women’s, gender, and sexuality studies; and comparative literature as part of their research and teaching. Both undergraduate and graduate students will find exceptional interdisciplinary opportunities through our program.

Interdisciplinary Opportunities
portrait of Emily Duru

Applying Undergraduate Research

“As a Black woman, I have always sought out representation in media, or more specifically, literature. Originally, I wanted to center my research around a book that poorly showcased Black women, and twisted the narrative around our bodies, sexuality, and maternity. However, I realized highlighting the bad only furthers the problem and doesn’t offer a solution to what a positive image could look like. While people have looked into the works of Paule Marshall in the past, I wanted to look at it from the point of view of Black feminist scholars and use critical theory to piece together how Marshall constructs a more encompassing illustration of Black womanhood. While this research project is just the beginning, in graduate school, I hope to continue to explore how critical Black feminist theory can change our reading of contemporary literature.”

–Emily Duru, English major and Creative Writing Minor, '21

Recent Publications

Recent Publications

Ranging from studies of the culture of bread in Anglo-Saxon England to exhibitions on contemporary comics journalism, our faculty produce new knowledge about Anglophone culture across the world from its earliest iterations to the present day. As well as books and articles, they regularly publish and create exhibitions, digital archives, story maps and databases, and share their ideas in podcasts, public lectures, presentations, and radio and tv interviews.

Recent Publications


April 15, 2024
ENGLISH - After a long career centered around a fascination for 19th-century American literature, William (Bill) Rossi will soon receive a prestigious honor: the Thoreau Society Medal. As a diligent professor emeritus of English, Rossi’s dedication to understanding the works of Henry David Thoreau has left a mark on literary scholarship and the University of Oregon.
March 27, 2024
ENGLISH, THEATRE ARTS - Alumna and Tony-nominated playwright Heidi Schreck (English, theatre arts, '09) is collaborating with director Lila Neugebauer to stage a production of Uncle Vanya at the Lincoln Center Theatre in April. The play, originally written in 1897, will star Steve Carell and Alison Pill.
February 29, 2024
ENGLISH, NATIVE AMERICAN AND INDIGENOUS STUDIES - A three-year endowment fund is supporting Kirby Brown's work on his family’s Cherokee oral history and material archives to better understand Cherokee Nation literature, history, intellectual production, and lived experience in the 20th and 21st centuries. Brown is an associate professor of Native American and Indigenous literary and cultural production in the Department of English and the director of Native American and Indigenous studies.