The Bachelor Degree in English Writing, Literature, and Publishing is a major that allows students to explore how language and narrative work, not only in making the world make sense but also in understanding how varying views of the world are constructed and disseminated.

Our entire social world revolves around storytelling, and we have become more and more aware of this strange fact not only in the arts, but also in economics, politics, and daily life. We tell stories about products (marketing and advertising), the state or future of the countries where we live (elections, speeches, rhetoric, legislation, supreme court decisions), peace and conflict (civilizations and their discontents, negotiations, press conferences), the past and the present (history, news, memoirs), and even ourselves and other people (Facebook, resumes, Twitter, opinion polls). We also tell stories to entertain, to teach, to inform and to enrich the lives of others. This program is designed to address all aspects of this multifaceted discipline and is genre neutral - for the poets, the playwrights, the speechwriters, the journalists, the romantics, the thrillers, the copywriters, and the legislators. 

Not simply a Creative Writing degree

Great creative writers have always been motivated by the belief that there must be a special relationship between narrative and the real; otherwise, why bother to write? For students majoring in English Writing, Literature and Publishing, that special relationship will no longer be a secret.

The Bachelor of Arts in English Writing, Literature, and Publishing (EWLP) emphasizes literary history and creative writing, while providing students with critical thinking skills and an introduction to the world of publishing. Whether students plan to pursue a career as a creative or professional writer or pursue graduate work in literary studies, the EWLP Program will be a
springboard to future study or a career in the arts or communication fields.

Whether it be playwriting, screenwriting, literary editing or other branches of professional writing, the interdependent relationship between literature, literary history, creativity, writing technique, and final publication are explored in order to imbue students with the confidence and skills to enhance all types of composition and prose. 

The curriculum grounds students in all aspects of the craft and enables them to bring these varying elements together, helping them to find their voice, refine their talent, and gain the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the world of writing and publishing. We have a focus on writing and literature, so students can go on to pursue graduate work in literature or an MFA in Writing. 

Alongside the pursuit of more traditional elements relating to language and literature, undergraduates may hone their skills in contemporary fields relating to the discipline; for example, core courses in British and American literature are paired with an elective in print graphics or podcasting. They are also taught web design and technology skills to be competitive in the world of journalism and magazine publishing. For students who want to write, we have a creative writing concentration that allows them to pursue their literary talents, as well as their journalistic talents.

In keeping with our interdisciplinary approach, we encourage diversity in the choice of courses, including electives outside of students’ main program of study. Students therefore have the opportunity to explore other realms of the humanities, from Communication to Classics, Business to Film, and in doing so learn to appreciate diverse perspectives on their studies and approach their degree with a broader skill set.
The coursework element of this major not only cultivates students’ capacity to write fluidly and persuasively, but also their independent research and critical thinking skills. The senior capstone project allows students to fully demonstrate their accumulation of these skills, and it can be creative: poetry, short fiction, drama, memoir, travel writing, a series of linked short essays; or a scholarly thesis.

"Taking writing classes at AUR helped me forge strong writing skills, on which I am relying every day as an assistant producer. There I discovered that writing is not only a matter of style but that good ideas are central to good work. The classes and creative writing workshops - taught by brilliant English department faculty members who are experienced authors themselves – gave me the opportunity to strengthen my writing process as I have learnt to develop and synthesize my thoughts in an organized fashion while exploiting my creative potential."- Laura Shan class of 2015.

Our English majors have done everything from publishing a novel right out of college, to working for publishers of travel books and major newspapers, such as the The New York Times, to writing and blogging for small start-ups and online magazines, and working in public relations.

Take a look at The American Playwrights Project that AUR hosted in conjunction with Valeria Orani and The Martin E. Segal Center at CUNY

Remus: The Literary and Art Magazine of the American University of Rome

Produced by the English Writing, Literature and Publishing Program

Editor: Hannah Clark

Faculty Supervisors: Lisa Colletta & Andrea Pacor

All works published by kind permission of the authors

Logo: Addie Cini

Cover: Souls by Anastasia Zubareva

Copyright © Remus 2019


Download as pdf

Course requirements and further detail

For more in-depth information about this program and individual course requirements, please see our full catalog.