Charles S. Adams
Tony Barnstone, Chair (Spring 2015)
Wendy Furman-Adams, Chair (Fall 2014) and Albert Upton Chair in English Language and Literature
William A. Geiger, Emeritus
Anne Kiley, Emeritus
Sean P.T. Morris
dAvid iAn pAddy
At a college named after one of the most important of nineteenth-century American poets, a man known for his commitment to literary art as an agent of social and political justice, it should be no surprise to know that we believe that the study of language and literature is at the core of the liberal arts, those aspects of education that make us humane and free. English courses contribute broadly both to personal enrichment in the liberal arts tradition and to professional development in a variety of fields. Above all, we seek to instill a lifelong habit of reflection, the “delight in the life of the mind” so central to the college’s expressed mission. The study of literature enables us to understand ourselves and other people-as individuals, as participants in our own and other historical cultural traditions, and as human beings. We believe that the literary practice we have described here has real consequence in the life of the individual and the life of the community, and in our collective commitment to cultivating the attitudes and values appropriate for leading and serving in a global society. Many graduating English majors choose to teach-either at the elementary, junior high, or high school level, or, after suitable graduate work, at a college or university. The emphasis on textual analysis, critical thinking, and writing, however, makes English a strong undergraduate major for almost any career. Among the professions our graduates have entered into are journalism, law, politics, medicine, library science, public service, business, public relations, advertising, and TV writing.