Welcome to the English Department
English Studies at the University of Victoria
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Welcome to the English Department at the University of Victoria. If you share our love of books (both digital and paper), reading, and writing, we invite you to enroll in one of our courses or programs.
The English Department grants both undergraduate (B.A. and B.A. with Honours) and graduate degrees (M.A. and Ph.D). We are one of the largest departments at UVic, offering many courses of interest to the University community as a whole, and maintaining close ties to Digital Humanities, Women's Studies, Medieval Studies, and the Indigenous Governance Program. With over 40 permanent faculty members, the UVic English Department teaches across the whole range of English Studies, from Old English to contemporary poetry, from modern literary theory to postcolonial literature, including Canadian and American Literature.
The Department of English at the University of Victoria is ranked within the top 200 English Departments in the world, according to the prestigious 2013 QS World University Rankings by Subject.
Our aim is to provide students with a stimulating environment in which to develop skills in all areas of English.
2013-14 Undergraduate Course Information
The 2013-14 Winter timetable is now available on the web at uvic.ca/timetable. For course descriptions of undergraduate courses the department is planning to offer in the 2013-14 academic year, click here.
The Department has a proud record of teaching excellence. Our Undergraduate Honours programme has been highly successful in preparing students for graduate study. The Professional Writing minor is based on both contemporary and traditional practices, ranging from web design to copy-editing, and has an exceptional work-placement record.
Our doctoral and master's programs offer professional training to over 70 graduate students a year in all areas of literary research, theory and criticism, including the teaching of literature and writing. The UVic English Department is currently the home of ELS Editions, which has been publishing well reviewed books in all areas of literary criticism since 1975; Internet Shakespeare Editions, the largest electronic resource devoted to the study of Shakespearean drama; Scandinavian-Canadian Studies, the journal of the association for the advancement of Scandinavian studies in Canada; the newly launched Victorian Poetry Network; and the Victorian Review, one of the leading professional journals devoted to the study of Victorian literature and culture.
To mark the 50th anniversary of the University of the Victoria in 2013, the Department produced this celebratory video in tribute to the dedication and talent of our faculty and students over the years.
Graduate Student SSHRC Winners
The University of Victoria Department of English congratulates its incoming and returning students for winning a record 15 new SSHRC awards for 2012-13.
PhD Student SSHRC Winners
|Kirsten Alm is entering the doctoral program this Fall. Her research interests include twentieth-century and contemporary poetics of resistance, and affirmation and assimilation among displaced and minority groups. She graduated from Trinity Western University with an MA in Interdisciplinary Humanities.|
|Adele Barclay is entering her second year in the PhD program at the University of Victoria where she studies twentieth-century American literature, ecocriticism, and poetics. Her SSHRC-funded project will focus on the poetry of Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, and Sylvia Plath. She holds an MA from McGill University and a BA from Queen's University.|
|David Oswald is writing his dissertation on the representations of animality and intellectual disability in twentieth-century American fiction, with a focus on novels by William Faulkner and Cormac McCarthy and the literary-cultural habit of fusing tropes of "canine" and "idiot" otherness. He is working under the supervision of Dr. Nicole Shukin, and has an MA from the University of Victoria and an Honours BA in English and Philosophy from the University of Toronto.|
MA Student SSHRC Winners
|Nicole Birch-Bayley holds a BA in English from Laurentian University, where she focussed on displacement, longing, and cultural identity in contemporary Canadian and world literatures. She is in the MA program's Cultural, Social and Political Thought (CSPT) concentration, and her research interests include diaspora and immigration studies, trends of nationalism, imagined communities, Canadian identity, and aboriginal cultures.|
|David Carlton received his degree in English from the University of British Columbia-Okanagan. His research interests include Old English and Medieval literature.|
|Carmen Cookson-Hills received her BA in English from the University of Calgary. Her research interests include British modernist novels, feminist thought and performance theory in relation to twentieth-century pop culture, and contemporary Canadian fiction.|
|Mikka Jacobsen completed her BA in English at the University of Victoria. She is most interested in twentieth-century American literature, literary theory, and fat studies.|
|Shaun MacPherson holds a BA from the University of Victoria and is currently in the MA program's CSPT concentration. His thesis project applies thing theory and historical materialism to a study of physical computing networks and maker/DIY culture.|
|Sandra Stephens earned her Honours BA in English Language and Literature, with a minor in Anthropology, from the University of Windsor. She will be pursuing the study of Canadian and American post-colonial Literature at the University of Victoria, and has a special interest in First Nations literature and oral traditions across North America, as well as the rest of the world.|
Other Graduate English SSHRC winners include Shannon Beahen, Jeanette Parker, Sarah Brennan-Newell, Lauren Makin, Renee Vander Meulen, and Jana Millar-Usiskin.
First-Year Courses Video
This series of three brief and entertaining videos, directed by a student and a former student of the Department, present basic information about our first-year writing course offerings, English 101, 135, and 146/147.
Recent Department Activities
- In 2014, the English Department will host the Western Literature Association Conference, whose theme is "Border Songs."
- In 2013, the University will host the 82nd annual Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Congress, the largest gathering of scholars across disciplines in Canada, will bring together 70 scholarly associations representing upwards of 7,000 delegates, including leading academics, internationally recognized researchers, policy-makers and practitioners to share findings, refine ideas and build partnerships. Various English Department faculty members are involved in organizing the conference.
- In 2013, the University of Victoria awarded an honorary degree to Canadian poet and novelist Anne Michaels.
- In 2012, the University of Victoria hosted the Victorian Media Conference. The English Department also hosted David L. Clark as a Lansdowne visitor.
- In 2012 the Internet Shakespeare Editions launched its Making Waves campaign with the goal of making its site fully sustainable in a campaign to raise funds from libraries around the world.
- In 2012, the department helped celebrate the 50th anniversary of the University of Victoria (1963-2013) with a topical website, 50 Special Books, and a video history of the department, both unveiled at a packed launch event at the UVic Bookstore.
- In 2011, Dr. Gary Kuchar was honored as the top humanities researcher at the University, and Dr. Ray Siemens was honored as a distinguished professor.
- In 2010, the Department hosted the 12th annual Modernist Studies Association conference, with approximately 600 delegates and 150 panels. The keynote speakers were Astradur Eysteinsson, Patricia Leighten, Maud Ellmann, Udaya Kumar, Harish Trivedi, Chana Kronfeld, Glenn Willmott, Ken Seigneurie, and Shuh-Mei Shih. See the MSA conference Website for posted recordings of keynote speeches and other information.
- In 2010, the Internet Shakespeare Editions launched an update of the site, with a redesigned UI as well as significant enhancements to navigation, especially the inclusion of the capacity to search from every page. Several plays were completed: As You Like It (David Bevington), Julius Caesar (John Cox), Henry V (James Mardock). and Henry IV, Part One (Rose Gaby).
- In 2010, Magdalena Kay received the Humanties Faculty Fellowship.
- In 2009, the Department hosted the Eighth Biennial Conference of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE).
- In 2009, the Department launched a new MA concentration in Medieval and Early Modern Studies.
- In 2008, the Department launched a new MA concentration in Literatures of the West Coast.
- In 2008, Allan Mitchell received the Humanties Faculty Fellowship.
For a more comprehensive list of recent Department events, see our news and events archive.