Liberal Arts & Professional Studies

York offers one of the best collections of English programs in the country.

The study of English literature explores literary history and its relation to current culture, re-thinks the dynamics of the book as a visual medium and examines the fundamental changes to knowledge and language created within our gendered, post-colonial world.

We offer a full range of English literature courses from the medieval period to the present, with particular strengths in contemporary poetry, popular literature, Canadian, American, African, South Asia and Caribbean literatures. The program invites you to explore some of the world's greatest literary works while developing critical thinking, reading and writing skills. You can choose from courses in:

  • poetry
  • drama
  • fiction
  • satire
  • folklore
  • literary criticism
  • critical theory
  • gender studies
  • stylistics and poetics
  • comics and cartoons
  • science fiction
  • children's literature
  • travel writing
  • ...and more!

The English department is the first and best place for considered and disciplined responses to the discourse and images that are shaped by the constantly changing technologies of a word-based world, and it is through the study of English literature that the critical skills necessary for understanding the past and the present are acquired.

Our goal is to provide you with a useful knowledge of literary works, both as art forms and as documents of human behaviour. By studying English literature, you will gain a vision of humanity as expressed in verbal art that crosses boundaries of time and place. Thanks to our location in the heart of the Greater Toronto Area, you can take advantage of the city's wide range of literary events including the Harbourfront Reading Series and Word on the Street.

  • Attend the Canadian Writers in Person series. Part of a first-year course, this popular series will introduce you to some of the best contemporary Canadian fiction and poetry. It's a unique opportunity to quiz the authors who pen the very works you're studying.

You may also be interested in combining your English degree with a Major or Minor in Creative Writing.

Possible Career Paths
Editor, writer, public relations officer, media specialist, communications director


Contact us at goyork@yorku.ca 

Program Details

Offered by

Liberal Arts & Professional Studies

Degrees offered


Ways to study

Full-Time, Part-Time

Fall entry


Winter entry


Summer entry



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