Areas of Study

African American and African Diaspora Literature

The vernacular tradition is the foundation of African American literature, and manifests itself in oral forms such as spirituals, sermons, gospel music, and blues. The body of literature encompasses the work of 18th century writers, from Phillis Wheatley and Olaudah Equiano, to slave narratives and literature of the Harlem Renaissance, to contemporary writers such as Toni Morrison, Maya Angelou, and Walter Mosley. Themes prevalent in African American and African Diaspora literature include the role of African Americans in a larger American society, African American culture, racism, slavery, and equality.

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Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Literature

Anglo-Saxon and Medieval LiteratureThe study of Anglo-Saxon literature extends from the establishment of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms in the 5th century until the Norman Conquest in 1066. Anglo-Saxon poetry is divided into heroic pre-Christian poetry and poetry with Christian influence. Beowulf, a complete epic poem,is the oldest surviving Germanic epic and the most important poem in Old English. The spread of troubadours during the Middle Ages led to the replacement of the heroic code of Anglo-Saxon literature with the trope of courtly love. Medieval drama included works such as the morality play, Everyman. The corpus of Middle English literature was heavily influenced by the French, and consists of works such as Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales andArthurian lore.

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Creative Writing Studies

Information will be forthcoming.

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Early American Literature

Early American Literature Information will be forthcoming.

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