The Duke English Department has long occupied a vital and distinctive place both in the discipline and in the university, where it has served as one of the defining spaces of thought, conversation, teaching, and inquiry. We have played a crucial role in defining the history, present, and future of the practices of reading and interpretation and the paradigms of research, pedagogy, and critique common to and distributed across the humanities as a whole, and we are committed to continuing as a conversation-driving and paradigm-setting place within Duke.
While the fields of scholarship and range of critical knowledge and practices engaged by our faculty vary widely, they reflect a unity around the central work of the department. Our research and pedagogy encompass the study of English language, the range of representational forms which find expression in manuscripts, novels, poetry, drama, film and other genres and media, and the social and cultural fields within which such expressive practices take form and which they help to shape. Expertise in the department ranges in time, from the earliest Medieval written manuscripts to the most recent 21st century literature, and in universality, across several continents including literature from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, and India. Thus we can offer a rich curriculum for both undergraduates and graduate students, which, if mastered, can lead to a BA or PhD in English.