Ezra Pound once described literature as “news that stays news,” a phrase that seems more apt today than ever. In a time when much of the knowledge and skill imparted by our education may be obsolete in a matter of decades, the study of language and literature remains something both timely and timeless. The written word is a dynamic medium, evolving to respond to experiences and to convey imagined worlds unknown to preceding generations; and yet the words of those who came before us retain the power to entertain, inspire, and enlighten us in the present.
It’s an awareness of this dual function of literature—as a medium of both innovation and tradition, as a bearer of memory and as a challenge to the present and future—that informs the study of English today. The faculty members of the English Department are committed to the work of this exciting discipline—as scholars, as artists, and as teachers—and are dedicated to creating an academic community in which students are encouraged as readers, writers, and citizens to engage the power of the word. It’s interesting and important work that transcends the cycle of career fashion; if you’re interested in learning more about the field of English today, or if you want more information about the programs of study offered by the English Department at the University of St. Thomas, feel free to contact me.
Dr. Andrew Scheiber