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The Department of English Language and Literature welcomes you! We are a diverse department in which English studies is broadly conceived: We offer courses in literature, creative writing, linguistics, rhetoric, and secondary English education. Courses in our department also span time periods and genres: you can study Chaucer and Steampunk, Shakespeare and Morrison, classical Greek and endangered languages, African American poetry and global literature, the rhetoric of Aristotle and of videogames, poetry writing, and flash fiction. We are proud of the fact that many of our faculty have won teaching awards and that all of our faculty members are committed to being strong, innovative classroom teachers.


  • Spring 2018 Course Descriptions are now available.

  • ELLA's first Open Mic of the year will be at Sacred Grounds on Saturday October 7th, from 6-8 pm. All genres of pieces welcome, but please, if you perform music, please perform only original pieces as we do not have the licensing for copyrighted musical performances.
    Hope to see you at Open Mic!
  • The MFA in Creative Writing launches in the Fall of 2018.  It’s designed for students interested in pursuing the art of writing fiction or poetry, and is especially tailored to students who are interested in exploring a variety of career paths. 
    Applications open September 2017 and close on February 1st, 2018. 
  • The IRIS Center is holding a brown bag series this year! The first one will happen Friday, September 8, with others to follow throughout the semester.  Check out the official announcement on the IRIS website for details.
  • MFA in Creative Writing Info Session. The CW faculty will be hosting an info session for all students who want to know more about pursuing an MFA. Wednesday, October 11, 11 a.m. – noon, in Peck Hall 3317.
  • Two upcoming creative writing events: 
    • Thursday, October 19, 5 p.m. in the MUC bookstore

      Alumni Reading – Katrina Knebel & Megan Hudgins

      The writers will be reading from their work, followed by a Q&A.

      Residing with her two daughters in the St. Louis Metro East Area, Katrina Knebel is an English teacher and the director of her high school’s writing center.  Katrina has earned an MA in English from SIUE. You can find her work at Sou’wester, Blue Earth Review, SpryAwayAfter Happy Hour Review, and Hippocampus Magazine.

      Megan Hudgins is a Pushcart Prize nominee who lives and works in St. Louis. Her chapbook, Crixa, won the inaugural Two of Cups Press chapbook contest in July 2014. Her work can also be found in several online and print journals including Anti-, Toad: The JournalI AM: TWENTY SEVENburntdistrictMojave River Review, and Postcard Poems and Prose Magazine.

    • Thursday, November 9, 5 p.m. in the MUC bookstore

      Fiction Writer Mary Troy

      Mary Troy will be reading from her recently released novel, Swimming on Hwy N, and answer questions from the audience.

      Mary Troy is the author of the novel, Beauties, winner of the USA book award, and finalist for Forewords Book of the Year Award. She has also published three short story collections: Cookie LilyThe Alibi Cafe and other stories, and Joe Baker Is Dead. Her short stories and essays have been published widely in Boulevard, New Letters, American Fiction, The Arkansas Review, Pleiades, and more. She has won a Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award, a Nelson Algren Award, a John Gould Fletcher Award, and was a finalist for the William Rockhill Nelson Award. She teaches fiction writing and contemporary literature for the University of Missouri-St. Louis where she has won the MO Governor’s award for teaching excellence and the University of Missouri System President’s Award for Leadership. She is also the editor of Natural Bridge, a journal of contemporary literature.

      All readings are free and open to the public.

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