English Language and Literature
Welcome! The Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo offers unique undergraduate and graduate programs covering the study of literature, rhetoric, professional writing, and digital media. Our professors have national and international reputations in these areas, and we boast many awards for teaching. Graduates of our B.A. and M.A. programs find successful careers in industry, law, government, teaching, medicine, communication design, and entrepreneurship, often getting their start with our co-op program; they also go on to advanced studies in English. Graduates of our PhD program hold academic and non-academic positions in Canada and across the world.
Whether you want to explore literature, digital media, political discourse, or technical communication, our diverse undergraduate degrees and programs allow you to pursue your interests. You have a wide variety of degree options, and with our integrated co-op option, you can combine study and work experience.
We offer MAs in Literary Studies, Rhetoric and Communication Design, and Experimental Digital Media. Our PhD offers a unique integration of literary studies with such fields as rhetoric, new media, and discourse analysis. Our degrees will prepare you for work in and beyond the academy.
Our department features internationally known scholars who conduct research in a variety of fields, including literary studies, digital media, and rhetoric and professional communication. The department is also affiliated with a number of research bodies, including the Critical Media Lab, the Games Institute, First Person Scholar, the Waterloo Directory of Victorian Periodicals, and the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies.
Teaching is central to our department, and our faculty and graduate students include many award-winning instructors. Class sizes in the department are small, and your professors are dedicated, dynamic instructors who will give you the academic tools you need to follow your intellectual passions and the individual attention you need to grow as a scholar.
Find out more
To find out more about our department, follow any of the links above or in the main menu. Our faculty and staff are also happy to talk with you via email, over the phone, or in person to answer any questions you might have.
For undergraduate inquiries
The English undergraduate office is located in Hagey Hall room 251.
For graduate inquiries
The English graduate office is located in Hagey Hall room 250.
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Webmaster: Bruce Dadey
- Nov. 29, 2019
- Nov. 25, 2019
Congratulations to UWaterloo English’s newest PhD, Dr. Evelyn Deshane. Evelyn successfully defended “Wish You Were Here: Transgender Road Narratives and The Place for Identity".
- Nov. 20, 2019
Congratulations to UWaterloo English’s newest PhD, Dr. Jason Lajoie. On November 20, Jason successfully defended “Technologies of Identity: A Queer Media Archaeology".
- Jan. 30, 2020
In 2019, the Barbie doll turned 60. Plasticity in body and persona allowed the Mattel toy company to position and reposition their high-achieving money-maker as relevant by exploiting social trend, political movements and historical shifts. As a complex international celebrity and feminist bête noir, Barbie is a mirror helping us to reflect on ourselves.
This lecture is based on my book, Plastic’s Republic, a poem collection centering on the Barbie doll as an enduring cultural icon. I will examine her creation, her impact on female beauty and discuss how her mouldable nature made her a “capital doll” and free market diva. Following the book’s themes, I will elaborate the philosophical, feminist and social issues she engenders and discuss how Barbie became plastic surgery’s prophet by spawning “plastic positive” humans. Finally, plastic’s reach extends to the dollification of romantic relationships via silicone sex dolls and ends (un)naturally in our plastic infused lives and smothered oceans.
I will follow the lecture by reading from Plastic’s Republic.