Additional Information

Programs associated with Barnard's English Department.

The Department is enriched by several independent, non-academic programs affiliated with the English Deparment either by administrative structure or by major participation by members of the English faculty.  The list below provides links to sites which can provide more information on each.  (For affiliated academic programs, please visit our Quick Links page.)

Two common confusions about assumed affiliations:

  1. Though First-Year English and First-Year Seminar are both part of First-Year Foundations and often use the same curriculum, only First-year English is part of the English Department.  First-year Seminar is NOT.
  2. Barnard's Department of English focuses on literature and creative and academic writing.  It does NOT offer instruction in English as a Second Language.  Here are two Links to ESL (American Language) Programs:

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Barnard's Tradition of Writers

Known for the strength of its writing program, Barnard includes among its current faculty novelists Mary Gordon ’71, Hisham Matar and poet Saskia Hamilton.  Each semester, authors and literary scholars from around the world join the staff.  This year’s guests can be found on the Faculty List page.  One event each term in the department's Writers at Barnard series features current Barnard Creative Writing faculty reading from their work

Barnard’s notable literary alumnae also include Zora Neale Hurston ’28, Francine du Plessix Gray ’52, June Jordan ’57, Erica Jong ’63, Ntozake Shange ’70, Jhumpa Lahiri ’89, who won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2000 for her book of short stories, Interpreter of Maladies, and Edwidge Danticuat ’90. In addition to Lahiri, six of Barnard’s alumnae in journalism have won or shared the Pulitzer Prize, including novelist and Newsweek columnist Anna Quindlen ’74, who is currently chair of the Barnard Trustees; Natalie Angier ’78, author and science writer for The New York Times; Rose Marie Arce ’86 and Suzanne Bilello ’77, members of a Newsday team which shared the Pulitzer for spot news reporting in 1992; and Eileen McNamara ’74, who won the Pulitzer in 1997 for commentary in The Boston Globe; and Katherine Boo ’88 who was recognized for her work at The Washington Post for a series on abuse in District of Columbia group homes.

English Department Faculty News in the Recent Past

  • Rachel Weisz is working on adapting The Mothers, Jennifer Gilmore's third novel, as a feature film.
  • Prof. Hisham Matar, award-winning Libyan author and Barnard English professor, reflects on returning to his childhood home in Libya inThe New Yorker.
  • Prof. Monica Miller discusses the lineage of Black Dandyism on NPR and The Chronicle of Higher Learning.
  • Prof. Achsah Guibbory has received very positive reviews for her Christian Identity, Jews, and Israel in Seventeenth-century England (Oxford, 2010):  "A superb book full of fascinating detail" (European Legacy), "magnificent account" (Milton Quarterly), "forceful study" (Jounral of British Studies.)  Look for the new release in paperback.
  • Prof. James Basker interviewed about his new book, American Antislavery Writings: Colonial Beginnings to Emancipation
  • Ellen McLaughlin's play, Septimus & Clarissa, got a rave review in the New York Times and has been extended.
  • Prof. William Sharpe's new book, New York Nocturne: The City after Dark in Literature, Painting, and Photography, 1850-1950, was deemed a "gorgeous, erudite book" by Barbara Spindel in her review for Barnes and Noble.

Selected reviews of books by Prof. Mary Gordon:

The Barnard English Department Book Swap.

Clearing out shelves?  Looking for something to read?  Take a book/leave a book in the bookcase at the southern end of the main corridor on the fourth floor of Barnard hall.  Come browse or unload your old books.

page last updated 12/3/13