About the English Department

The Department’s Mission

The Department of English Language and Literature is a research-focused and collegial academic unit that prizes dynamic and effective undergraduate and graduate teaching, engaging creative activity, and meaningful service to the university, to the academic community, and to the broader communities in which the Department is situated. The undergraduate literature program focuses on an understanding of the traditions, themes and dynamics of imaginative writing in English, within its various historical and cultural contexts. The graduate program with its field of “Text/Community/Discourse” extends this emphasis.

The undergraduate program in English and Creative Writing combines the study of literature with small, writing workshop courses in multiple genres. The program in Writing, Rhetoric, and Discourse Studies focuses on the theoretical and practical applications of writing in a range of cultural and professional contexts. The Department aims in all of its programs to foster an informed, creative, and critical intelligence, a mastery of the best uses of language, and an appreciation for the social and personal centrality of powerful imaginative and expository writing across times and cultures.

Why Study English at Brock?

The Department offers a broad range of courses in literature in English and in writing, rhetoric and discourse studies as well as Creative Writing options. The study of literature exercises in our students an imaginative, emotional and intellectual connection with and understanding of people of other places, times, backgrounds and challenges. The Department’s literature programs build valuable transferable skills in reading, historical understanding, working with culturally potent narratives and symbols, researching, and writing with clarity and resonance.

Such transferable skills contribute to our students’ potential as workers in our global knowledge economy, and as citizens positioned to contribute significantly to their local and broader communities. Studies in our writing programs imbue our students with the potential to become wordsmiths, people who can write convincingly, creatively and tellingly within a broad variety of cultural and professional contexts. All of our courses create the capacity in our students to be readers who can read critically in order to discern the underlying assumptions and the rhetorical strategies which inform all manner of written work and social texts.