English Language and Literature
William Elbert Rivers, Interim Chair
David Berube, Ph.D., New York University, 1990
David Cowart, Ph.D., Rutgers University, 1977, Louise Fry Scudder Professor
Kwame Senu Neville Dawes, Ph.D., University of New Brunswick, 1992
Stanley Dubinsky, Ph.D., Cornell University, 1985
Paula R. Feldman, Ph.D., Northwestern University, 1974, C. Wallace Martin Professor, Louise Fry Scudder Professor
William Price Fox, B.A., University of South Carolina, 1950, Writer-in-Residence
Donald J. Greiner, Ph.D., University of Virginia, 1967, Carolina Distinguished Professor
Scott Gwara, Ph.D., Center for Medieval Studies, University of Toronto, 1993
Ina Rae Hark, Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles, 1975
Janette Turner Hospital, M.A., Queens University, 1973, Carolina Distinguished Professos, Distinguished Writer-in-Residence
Dianne Johnson, Ph.D., Yale University, 1988
Steven W. Lynn, Ph.D., University of Texas, Austin, 1981, Louise Fry Scudder Professor, Senior Associate Dean
David Lee Miller, Ph.D., University of California, Irvine, 1979
Lawrence Rhu, Ph.D., Harvard University, 1987m
Thomas J. Rice, Ph.D., Princeton University, 1971
William Elbert Rivers, Ph.D., University of North Carolina, 1976, Interim Chair
Patrick Greig Scott, Ph.D., University of Edinburgh, 1976
David S. Shields, Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1982, McClintock Professor of Southern Letters
H. Meili Steele, Ph.D., University of North Carolina, 1984
William B. Thesing, Ph.D., Indiana University, 1977
Laura Dassow Walls, Ph.D., Indiana University, 1992
Mary Ann Wimsatt, Ph.D., Duke University, 1964
Abner Keen Butterworth, Ph.D., University of South Carolina, 1970
Thorne Compton, Ph.D., University of South Carolina, 1974
Susan Courtney, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 1997
Cynthia Davis, Ph.D., Duke University, 1994
Fred Dings, M.F.A., University of Iowa; Ph.D., University of Utah, 1991
Dorothy Disterheft, Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles, 1977
Greg Forter, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 1998, Undergraduate Director
Christy Friend, Ph.D., University of Texas, Austin, 1997
Edward Gieskes, Ph.D., Boston University, 1999
Bernard E. Greer, M.A., Hollins College, 1973
Chris Holcomb, Ph.D, University of Texas at Austin, 1995, First-Year English Director
Judith G. James, Ph.D., University of North Carolina, 1984
Tony Jarrells, Ph.D., State University of New York, Stony Brook, 2002
Nina S. Levine, Ph.D., Tulane University, 1991
Edward Madden, Ph.D., University of Texas, Austin, 1994
Esther Gilman Richey, Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles, 1990
Andrew Shifflett, Ph.D., Princeton University, 1993, Graduate Director
Susan J. Vanderborg, Ph.D., Stanford University, 1996
Tracey Weldon, Ph.D., Ohio State University, 1998
Charles Wilbanks, Ph.D., University of Nebraska, Lincoln, 1982
Harriett Williams, Ph.D., University of South Carolina, 1986
Elise Blackwell, M.F.A., University of California, Irvine, 1990
Holly Crocker, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University, 1999
Mindy Fenske, Ph.D., Louisiana State University, 2001
Patrick Gehrke, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, 2003
Leon Jackson, D.Phil., Oxford University, 1994
John Muckelbauer, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, 2002, First-Year English Director
Kristan Poirot, Ph.D., University of Georgia, 2004
Tara Powell, Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 2004
Barbara Schulz, Ph.D., University of Hawaii, 2006
Daniel Smith, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, 2004
Rebecca F. Stern, Ph.D., Rice University, 1997
Shevaun Watson, Ph.D., Miami University, 2004
Qiana Robinson Whitted, Ph.D., Yale University, 2003
The Department of English offers programs leading to the M.A., M.F.A., and Ph.D. degrees with areas of emphasis in English and American literature (M.A. and Ph.D.), composition and rhetoric (M.A. and Ph.D.), and speech communication (M.A.). The department also offers joint master's degrees with the School of Library and Information Science (M.A./M.L.I.S.) and the Moore School of Business (M.A./M.S.). The M.A.T. degree in English is offered in cooperation with the College of Education. Interdisciplinary affiliations with African American Studies, Southern Studies, and Women's Studies increase the range of course options and research opportunities within degree programs.
As the number and variety of degree programs suggest, our graduates pursue careers in many fields, including college- and university-level teaching, public and private secondary education, librarianship, publishing, creative and technical writing, journalism, public relations, and business administration. Graduates of our doctoral programs are especially well qualified for academic careers, and they enter tenure-track positions upon graduation at a rate consistently higher than the national average.
Applicants for admission to the M.A., M.F.A., or Ph.D. degree programs in the Department of English must have completed a minimum of 24 semester hours of upper-division undergraduate courses in English or an appropriate related discipline, with grades indicating ability for successful graduate work in the department. Applicants for all degrees must submit all application forms required by The Graduate School, satisfactory scores on the GRE general test, a sample of academic writing, a statement of purpose, and at least two satisfactory letters of recommendation from persons familiar with their academic achievement. The GRE subject test of literature in English is required of applicants to the M.A. and Ph.D. programs in English and American literature or composition and rhetoric.
Successful applicants to the M.A., M.A.T., and M.F.A. programs typically have GRE verbal scores of 550 and above (for tests taken before October 2002), GRE analytical scores in the 3-5 range (for tests taken October 2002 and after), and an undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or better. Students admitted to the Ph.D. program generally have GRE verbal and analytical scores of 600 (for tests taken before October 2002) and a GPA of 3.50 or better in their master's degree course work. These numbers are provided as guidelines; we do not set absolute cut-off scores. All parts of an application are carefully considered, with especially close attention given to the writing sample.
An applicant who lacks adequate undergraduate course work may have to take up to 12 credit hours of 400-level literature or communication courses (depending on the degree emphasis sought) before the application will be considered.
The application deadline is January 15 for those wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships and fellowships. For all others the deadline is April 15.
Residence and other basic requirements for degrees in English are established by The Graduate School. Special requirements established by the department are outlined below.
Graduate credit for degree candidates in English normally is restricted to courses numbered 700 or above. Qualified graduate students may enroll in courses numbered 500-699 with the approval of the department's director of graduate studies and may receive graduate credit by doing such additional work as required by the department and the instructor. The chair of the department may authorize students in other departments or schools to obtain graduate credit in most English courses numbered 500-699.
Master of Arts in English, with Emphasis in English and American Literature (30 hours)
The student must select one of the following areas for concentration: English literature before 1660, English literature after 1660, or American literature. Requirements include:
1. one course in American literature, one in English literature before 1660, one in English literature after 1660, and one additional course in the exam area (12 hours);
2. five electives (two may be taken outside the department; ENGL 700 and 732 are recommended) (15 hours);
3. a comprehensive exam covering one of the three areas of concentration;
4. thesis, ENGL 799 (3 hours);
5. a reading knowledge of one foreign language.
Master of Arts in English, with Emphasis in Composition and Rhetoric (30 hours)
1. ENGL 790 and 791 (6 hours);
2. two courses from the following: ENGL 690* (see workshop course restrictions below), 792, 793, 794, 795, 890 (6 hours);
3. English and/or American literature, 700-800 level* (6 hours);
4. electives (must be approved by the Composition and Rhetoric Committee) (9 hours);
5. a three-hour written comprehensive exam on composition and rhetoric; the exam may be taken no more than twice;
6. reading knowledge of a foreign language;
7. thesis, ENGL 799 (3 hours).
*Neither ENGL 701A and 701B nor more than one workshop course may be counted in the 30 hours of classroom credits; students wishing to emphasize technical writing should consult the graduate director about special conditions.
Master of Arts in English, with Emphasis in Speech Communication (30 hours)
1. SPCH 700 and 701 (6 hours);
2. four additional courses in speech communication at the 700 or 800 level (12 hours);
3. three electives at the 700 or 800 level reflecting the student's particular professional or academic objectives (9 hours); electives must be approved in advance by the student's advisor;
4. thesis, SPCH 799 (3 hours); students may enroll in additional hours of SPCH 799, but only three hours count toward completion of the degree;
5. written comprehensive examination.
Master of Arts in Teaching (30 hours)
Eligibility for admission is limited to those persons seeking initial certification. The M.A.T. degree is for South Carolina certification in secondary English, and a candidate must satisfy the requirements for that certification in order to receive the degree.
In addition to fulfilling requirements for admission common to all degree programs, an applicant to the M.A.T. program must have at least 18 semester hours of the following 400-level literature courses or their equivalent, including Black literature (ENGL 428--may be taken after conditional admission); contemporary literature (ENGL 413 or 423); Shakespeare's tragedies (ENGL 405); a non-Western literature; and 6 credits in survey-type, upper-division English and/or American literature survey courses. Applicants without a standard English major may fulfill this 18-semester-hour requirement only by taking upper-division courses that the Department of English M.A.T. advisor approves.
Applicants with an unsatisfactory test score or a marginal undergraduate record have a chance to be admitted conditionally and will have to take certain upper-division (400-level) English courses to make up for this undergraduate deficiency.
1. A minimum of 30 graduate credits, with at least 15 graduate credits in English. In some cases a candidate who has taken undergraduate courses in education may use one of those courses to satisfy the overall education course requirements. The undergraduate courses are ENGL 447, 473, and 484.
2. Since all candidates must qualify for a South Carolina secondary English certificate in order to qualify for the English M.A.T. degree, all candidates must take, or have already taken, the specific courses required for that certificate. These are advanced composition, modern grammar, the development of modern English (the history of the English language), adolescent literature, and literary criticism. Such courses will be in addition to the minimum 15 graduate credits in English used to satisfy the English course requirements in the degree program. These certificate-required courses may be taken at the undergraduate level, and some of them are offered through Distance Education.
Master of Arts in English and Master of Library and Information Science (55 hours)
The joint master's program is a 55-hour program leading to an M.A. in English and a Master of Library and Information Science. It is administered by a joint committee, which recommends students for admission and approves their programs. Admission is only to the joint program. Neither degree will be awarded separately. If students wish to change from the joint program to the regular degree program in English or library and information science, they must reapply to the particular program they wish to enter.
M.A. in English (28 hours)
1. ENGL 700 (3 hours);
2. one course from each of five course groups (15 hours);
- a. Medieval and Renaissance--nondramatic: ENGL 703, 705, 708, 710, 715, 716
- b. drama: ENGL 711, 712, 713, 718, 728
- c. British literature, 1660-1900: ENGL 717, 720, 723, 724, 725, 726, 727
- d. American literature before 1900: ENGL 742, 744, 745, 751, 758
- e. 20th-century literature: ENGL 729, 730, 752, 755, 760, 761
3. one course in an allied field (3 hours);
e.g., ENGL 776, ENGL 870-872, HIST 790;
4. two elective courses (6 hours);
5. ENGL 799 (thesis) (1 hour);
6. a reading knowledge of one foreign language.
M.L.I.S. (27 hours)
1. LIBR 701, 702, 703, 704, 705, 706 (18 hours);
2. library and information science electives (9 hours).
Master of Arts in English and Master of Science in Business Administration (51 hours)
To enter the program the student must successfully complete 24 hours of English courses beyond the lower-division level and/or complete the major or cognate in business administration. The student must also have satisfactory scores on the GRE Subject Test in English and the GMAT exam for business administration. A personal interview or letter explaining why one wishes to enroll in the joint program is also required. Admission is only to the joint program. Neither degree will be awarded separately.
Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing (45 hours)
The student must choose one of three options within the program: poetry, fiction, or writing for the media. In addition to all the basic requirements for admission to the graduate English program, applicants must submit a writing sample in the genre that they wish to pursue (25 pages of fiction or writing for the media; at least 12 poems).
1. 15 hours of workshop courses;
2. 6 hours in theory (three of these hours may be in the theory and teaching of composition, exclusive of ENGL 701A and 701B);
3. 9 hours in literature;
4. 9 hours of approved electives;
5. thesis, ENGL 799 (6 hours);
6. a three-hour written comprehensive examination in the history and practice of the student's genre;
7. a thesis, which will be a book-length work (a novel, a collection of short stories, a group of poems, or a piece of writing for the visual media) of a quality that compares favorably with work being published by university presses and commercial publishers;
8. an oral examination on the thesis;
9. a reading knowledge of one foreign language.
Doctor of Philosophy in English, with Emphasis in English and American Literature (36 hours)
For admission, the applicant must have a master's degree or its equivalent. Each candidate must have a major and minor field. The major field may be chosen from the following: Medieval, Renaissance, Restoration and 18th-century English literature, 19th-century English literature, 20th-century English literature, colonial and 19th-century American literature, 20th-century American literature. The following may be used for the minor field only: linguistics, comparative literature, criticism theory, women's studies, history of the book and authorship, composition and rhetoric, and Southern literature. Students may choose to design an ad hoc minor, subject to approval by the Graduate Program Committee. Examples of ad hoc minors approved in the past include religion and literature, children's literature, and computers and literature.
Admission by the Department of English for graduate study does not mean admission as a candidate in the English and American literature Ph.D. program. Students are admitted to such candidacy on the basis of their record and a written qualifying exam; the exam is the section of the M.A. comprehensive exam in literature relevant to their chosen major field. Students should take this qualifying exam no later than the semester in which they are taking their 15th hour of course work. A student is allowed only two attempts to pass the admission-to-candidacy exam. Students in the M.A. program who apply to and are accepted into the Ph.D. program may request to have their M.A. exams reread as a Ph.D. qualifying exam. In such a case, the rereading will count as one attempt. M.A. exams will not be read for Ph.D. qualifying purposes unless or until the student has been accepted into the Ph.D. program.
1. in consultation with the doctoral advisory committee (in place by the end of the first semester of course work), each student develops a program of study that includes at least two 800-level seminars and one class in critical theory (ENGL 732, 734, or its equivalent); ENGL 700 is also recommended (24 hours, exclusive of ENGL 701 A and B);
2. a comprehensive exam that consists of two written exams, one in the major field and one in the minor field;
3. an oral exam covering the student's major field;
4. 12 hours of dissertation preparation;
5. a reading knowledge of two foreign languages or one language satisfied by taking a 400-level course of literature, not in translation, with a grade of B or better, or a 500-level course of literature, not in translation, with a grade of C or better; these courses may not be used to fulfill the elective requirement. Completion of ENGL 702 and 703 with an average grade of B or better may fulfill one foreign language requirement.
Doctor of Philosophy in English, with Emphasis in Composition and Rhetoric
1. ENGL 790 and 791 (6 hours);
2. two courses from ENGL 792, 793, 794 (6 hours);
3. linguistics (3 hours);
4. human learning processes (3 hours);
5. ENGL 700 (3 hours);
6. ENGL 690 or 795 (3 hours);
7. English and/or American literature, 700-800 level (may include literary theory) (12 hours);
8. specialization (to be approved by the department's Committee on Composition and Rhetoric and the graduate director) (12 hours);
9. eight-hour written comprehensive exam in composition and rhetoric and the field of specialization; (Once a candidate has taken 48 credits in this Ph.D. program [including courses accepted in lieu of specific course requirements], the candidate must take the Ph.D. exam before being allowed to enroll for more graduate credits as a candidate in the program. This exam may be taken no more than twice.)
10. oral comprehensive exam; (This exam may be taken no more than twice.)
11. a reading knowledge of two foreign languages or one language satisfied by taking a 400-level course of literature, not in translation, with a grade of B or better, or a 500-level course of literature, not in translation, with a grade of C or better;
12. at least one year's experience teaching English composition at the school or college level;
13. dissertation and defense, ENGL 899 (12 hours).
Admission to candidacy. Admission by the Department of English for graduate study does not mean admission as a candidate in the composition and rhetoric Ph.D. program. Students are admitted to such candidacy on the basis of their record and a written qualifying exam--the M.A. three-hour comprehensive exam in composition and rhetoric. A student who passes this exam for the M.A. degree may or may not have done well enough on the exam to be admitted to Ph.D. candidacy.
Students with a master's degree from other institutions must take this exam no later than the semester in which they are taking their 15th hour of course work or, if attending summer sessions only, no later than the second summer of study. An applicant may take this exam no more than twice, including the exam for the M.A.
The 48 semester hours of postbaccalaureate graduate course work are the equivalent of two years (four semesters) of full-time graduate study. The Department of English may therefore waive up to 18 credit hours of this 48-credit requirement on a course-by-course basis for students with master's-level course work.