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Interdisciplinary Concentration in Classical and Early Modern British Literary Studies

Program Planner

The Interdisciplinary Concentration in Classical and Early Modern British Literary Studies is one of several interdisciplinary concentrations in Comparative Literary Studies. Through the systematic comparison of literary works from more than one culture or era, students of comparative literature develop a sophisticated understanding of what literature is and how it is culturally, politically, philosophically, and sociologically defined and influenced, exploring, from a cross-cultural and interdisciplinary perspective, how and why literary texts are categorized (in terms of traditions, periods, genres and movements).

Students who study comparative literature can employ the skills and information learned in their courses to supplement and further their careers in a wide range of fields, including education, law, creative writing, international business, marketing, librarianship, editing, technical writing, publishing, communications, translation, history, international studies, literature, and philosophy.

Rationale for Concentration in Classical and Early Modern British Literary Studies

British writers of the Early Modern era saw themselves as participants in a renaissance of Classical learning and aesthetics (hence the traditional name of “Renaissance” for the period). A comparative examination of Early Modern British literature in the context of its Classical precursors offers an opportunity to see both what the British “Renaissance” owed to the ancient world and how it differed from that source and model.

Faculty Sponsor

H. Haynes (English)


Six courses as indicated below

General Course

Take one course from the following

  • GRE 201/Intermediate Greek
  • LAT 201/Intermediate Latin, or equivalent

Ancient History

Take one course from the following

  • CLS 108, Late Antiquity*
  • CLS 111, Rome and the Barbarians in the Early Middle Ages*
  • CLS 301/Classical Greek Civilization*
  • CLS 302/Hellenistic World*
  • CLS 303/History of the Roman Republic *
  • CLS 304/History of the Roman Empire *
  • CLS 305/Ancient Christianity *

Early Modern History

Take one course from the following

  • HIS 117/Early Modern Europe *
  • HIS 318/European Expansion

Ancient Literature

Take one course from the following

  • CLS 250/Introduction to Greek Mythology*
  • CLS 230/Classical Traditions*
  • CLS 325/Sex and Gender in Greco-Roman Antiquity*
  • HON 351/An Odyssey in Greece*
  • GRE 370/Special Topics in Classical Greek
  • LAT 310/The Age of Augustus
  • LAT 315/Vergil and the Impact of Empire
  • LAT 370/Special Topics in Latin

Take two courses from the following

  • LIT 251/British Literature to 1700*
  • LIT 321/Shakespeare: Sources and Contexts*
  • LIT 357/Early Modern British Literature*
  • LIT 358/British Literature and Religion, 1550-1700*
  • LIT 421/Shakespeare: Comedies and Histories*
  • LIT 422/Shakespeare: Tragedies and Romances*

*Courses without prerequisites.

In addition to courses required by this concentration, a student must complete one approved course in quantitative reasoning and one approved course in laboratory science to satisfy breadth requirements in the college core. Students should consult their major or open option advisors about how best to complete other college core requirements.

Please note: The Liberal Learning Program has been renamed The College Core, and some of its components have also been renamed. Learn More