Encourages students to encounter a broad range of literary art

By creating, experiencing, and studying literature, we come to understand some of the most powerful ways human beings perceive, know, share, and influence the world. The study of literature draws on its rich history as a branch of the humanities, seeking student development and mastery of vital skills—reading, writing, speaking, critical analysis, aesthetic judgment—that form the basis for virtually any career or profession.

The Literature Major and Minor at Eckerd College encourage students to encounter a broad range of literary art, from ancient Greek tragedy to modern European fiction, from American poetry to contemporary literary theory. (The college catalog lists specific course offerings and requirements.) We regularly offer courses in poetry, fiction, and drama of all periods from English, American, and world literary traditions. Students have the opportunity to take survey courses covering major periods in literary history as well as courses focusing on major writers such as Shakespeare or Faulkner. Drawing on their individual interests and research, the literature faculty add a range of special topics courses, including courses in children’s literature, literature and the law, religion and literature, and literature and film. Students with command of a second language may choose to major or minor in Comparative Literature, which combines study of English and American literary traditions with the study of foreign literatures read in the original language. (The college catalog lists specific course offerings and requirements.) Many of our students also choose to double-major in related disciplines such as Creative Writing, Theater, and foreign languages.

While at Eckerd, our students play key roles in campus publications, such as the newspaper, The Current, and the college literary magazine, The Eckerd Review. They have also enriched their literary studies with study abroad, whether at the Eckerd London Study Center or through many of the international programs available to Eckerd students. Internships with newspapers, publishing houses, and local schools—to mention only a few possibilities—have provided many students with valuable experience outside the classroom. Our graduates have gone on to succeed in a wide range of careers in areas including business, law, teaching, and journalism. A sampling of the career paths followed by some of our students can be found on the Career Opportunities page.