English literature degrees are awarded to students who study English in
college. They take courses to show their proficiency in the language, usually
during their freshman year. Later in their career, the students are encouraged
to take courses in different areas of literature such as modern and romantic
lit. Many students also take creative writing courses and work on the school
newspaper or student lit magazine.
The most popular career choice for students with an English literature degree
is teaching, either at the university or high school level. Some students also
go onto graduate school where they focus their studies on one particular area of
expertise. Other students also work in museums or libraries where they work on
issues relating to their major. There are students with English literature
degrees working in advertising, public relations, and writing. While in college,
the students study a variety of different areas relating to English
Romantic literature is roughly defined as literature created between 1750 and
1870, especially in Europe and the United States. A further explanation is
available at The Lycaeum. Rutgers also has more information on the Romantic movement.
Victorian literature applies only to those works created during the era of
Queen Victoria from 1837-1901. The Victorian
Literature Website has information relating to the writers of these works.
Studies of Victorian
Literature was created to help students at The University of Texas at
Austin, but is used by many others.
The term modern literature refers to books and poems published after 1850. The
University of Virginia has an extensive collection of modern writings
available to browse, search, or read.
World War II is viewed as the end of the modern era and the beginning of the
contemporary era of literature. The Department of English & Literature Brock University
lists some common characteristics found in this type of writing.
Renaissance (17th Century)
Renaissance literature encompasses European writing dating between the
15th century and the 17th century, particularly in Italy
and England. The best resource for this type of writing is found at The Luminarium. Rutgers also has some valuable information on their
Restoration (18th Century)
Work created during the Restoration of England falls under the banner of
Restoration literature and dates from the late 1860s when the Stuarts were
ending their reign. English Literature Restoration has information on the authors
writing during this time period.
Medieval (Old and Middle English)
Medieval literature defines work created in England starting in 500 AD and
ending in the late 1400s when the Renaissance began. Serbian Unity Congress contains an in depth analysis on this
type of writing.
Creative writing is a type of writing that’s based on fiction, with the
stories coming from the writers head rather than a non-fiction article. Daily
Writing Tips has information on getting started in creative writing, coming
up with stories ideas and a basic outline of creative writing.
Poetry is a type of free verse writing, where the words may rhyme but don‘t
necessarily have to. The verses are typically written in stanzas. The E-Server Poetry
Collection allows users to search poems and read works from some famous
poets such as Cummings and Emily Dickinson.
Comparative literature focuses on comparing and contrasting the work of two
different writers in a similar or different vein. The American Comparative Literature Association provides papers
written on the subject and news on upcoming events.