Literature and Social Justice
In 2009, the Lehigh English Department made a commitment to literature and social justice (LSJ) as the central intellectual emphasis of our department. Through this focus, we explore the distinctive contributions that literary works (and other forms of expressive culture) have made to movements for social justice over many centuries, as well as the ways in which literary texts have represented and often legitimated unjust social arrangements.
English at Lehigh
Welcome to the English Department! You can explore the department's offerings and get a sense of what we're about by browsing the cards on this page and the navigation above. Note the events and news blocks! You'll also find an events calendar; Please check back regularly for updates.
The Department of English has a focus on Literature and Social Justice, the outcome of a multi-year effort to revitalize the traditional period-based approach to literary studies and to develop an organic interest among many of our faculty members. Like the university as a whole, the department is committed to cultivating graduates who will be engaged citizens and community members, in addition to successful professionals and life-long learners. We also hope that our students in particular will learn to recognize how literature and other forms of cultural production uniquely intervene in questions of justice and shape our ways of being in the world.
English Department News
Message from the Department Chair
English majors at Lehigh love to read, sometimes bringing this love with them from high school, sometimes developing it in first-year English classes. If on a spring afternoon you visited the terrace of Drown Hall, our home on Lehigh's South Mountain, you would be likely to find students scattered in chairs reading, hunched at tables editing one another's papers, or gathered to continue a discussion begun in class.
- An exploration of how studying literatures contributes to questions of social justice.
- An immersion in historical periods informed by strong theoretical commitments.
- An engagement with contemporary literature and culture. An emphasis on theorized pedagogy, reflective practice, and the scholar-teacher model.
- An interaction with Lehigh's varied interdisciplinary programs, including Africana Studies; Classics; Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies; Jewish Studies; and American Studies.