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A history of critical and methodological openness

Department of Literatures in English

The Cornell Department of Literatures in English has a long history of critical and methodological openness. From the early 20th century, it has embraced new approaches to literary study, while maintaining traditional strengths. Supported by a series of libraries and collections that are world-renowned in many fields, Cornell English is the largest humanities department at Cornell University.

Literatures in English Events

Recent Highlights from the Department

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Land Acknowledgment

Cornell University is located on the traditional homelands of the Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' (the Cayuga Nation). The Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' are members of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, an alliance of six sovereign Nations with a historic and contemporary presence on this land. The Confederacy precedes the establishment of Cornell University, New York state, and the United States of America. We acknowledge the painful history of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' dispossession, and honor the ongoing connection of Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' people, past and present, to these lands and waters.

This land acknowledgment has been reviewed and approved by the traditional Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ' leadership. 

McGraw Tower in summer

Statement from the Department of Literatures in English

We, the faculty and staff of the Cornell Literatures in English department, pledge to support and do our utmost to protect members of our community who are discriminated against, unjustly treated, or otherwise targeted because of race, religion, gender identification, sexuality, immigration status, ability, and other forms of difference.

Recognizing that words and symbols can be manipulated into violence, we renew our commitment to direct the force of language toward large and small acts of learning, alliance, imagination, and justice.

LGTB books

Recent Books by Department of Literatures in English Faculty

Department faculty continually publish important works of criticism, fiction, poetry, and essays. Visit Literatures in English Faculty: Recent Books to learn more.

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