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Los Angeles Review of Books Releases UMD English Antiracism Publication

The series “Antiracism in the Contemporary University” is a product of the recent year-long Antiracism Series.

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English Department to Offer ‘Storytelling with Code’ Course this Fall

The course comes out of Associate Professor Kari Kraus’ 2020–21 Long Teaching Fellowship.

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Early American Literature Program Ranks Among Best in Nation

Faculty, student achievement highlighted by U.S. News & World Report's 2022 'Best Graduate Schools' rankings.

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In Session

An internship at the Maryland General Assembly is helping English major Sumayyah Ghori ’21 prepare for a future in law.

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English weds critical inquiry and creative expression to unleash the power of words.

The department’s award-winning faculty whose research programs reflect the vitality of the Washington, D.C.-Maryland research, art and politics corridor, prepares students for leadership roles in a range of 21st-century careers. Trained in digital and media studies, a wide variety of literary and cultural traditions, and critical race and other interdisciplinary studies, students learn how critical thinking and persuasive writing can change the world. 

Prospective & Current Students

Prospective Students

Why choose the University of Maryland for English?

Our department champions innovation, diversity and flexibility in pursuit of higher education. Our 50-plus  tenure-track faculty are first in their fields, with a wide-ranging and award-winning body of work in digital media, scholarly essays and books, novels, short stories and poetry.

Current Students

Current Students

Looking for information about how to declare the major, curriculum requirements or how to apply for grants and scholarships?

Find advising,  program requirements, course descriptions and writing support.

Faculty & Staff Directory

Faculty, graduate student and staff directory

Search our directory to learn about our faculty, graduate students and staff.


Black Queer Freedom: Spaces of Injury and Paths of Desire

Mapping a geography of black queer life through art


Author/Lead: GerShun Avilez
Avilez book cover

Whether engaged in same-sex desire or gender nonconformity, black queer individuals live with being perceived as a threat while simultaneously being subjected to the threat of physical, psychological, and socioeconomic injury. Attending to and challenging threats has become a defining element in queer black artists’ work throughout the black diaspora. GerShun Avilez analyzes the work of diasporic artists who, denied government protections, have used art to create spaces for justice. He first focuses on how the state seeks to inhibit the movement of black queer bodies through public spaces, whether on the street or across borders. From there, he pivots to institutional spaces--specifically prisons and hospitals--and the ways such places seek to expose queer bodies in order to control them. Throughout, he reveals how desire and art open routes to black queer freedom when policy, the law, racism, and homophobia threaten physical safety, civil rights, and social mobility.

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“Postcolonially Speaking?"

A trenchant critique of Post Critique Methodologies. Special Issue on “What Is and Isn’t Changing” From MLQ (Modern Language Quarterly).


Author/Lead: Sangeeta Ray
MLQ Sangeeta Ray

Has postcolonial literary criticism been affected by the postcritical antihistoricist turn? The short answer is no. It is hard to imagine what an antihistoricist postcolonial literary criticism might look like, since any investment in the term postcolonial assumes a simultaneous commitment to history and politics. While the term from its inception has been subject to criticism, it continues to hold its own despite more recent terms like global and world. While they may signal a post-postcolonial turn, a term initially used by Erin O’Connor (2003) to critique postcolonial analyses of Victorian novels, the use of and engagement with the postcolonial still provide a methodological challenge to modes of criticism advanced under the global and the world. Postcolonial literary criticism remains attuned to questions of aesthetics and ethics.

Find the Volume 81 Issue 4 here

The World Doesn't Require You

Established by the leaders of the country’s only successful slave revolt in the mid-nineteenth century, Cross River still evokes the fierce rhythms of its founding.


Author/Lead: Rion Scott
Rion Scott Book Cover

Finalist • PEN / Jean Stein Book Award
Longlisted • Aspen Words Literary Prize
Best Books of the Year: Washington Post, NPR, Buzzfeed and Entropy
Best Short Story Collections of the Year: Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, the New York Public Library, and Electric Literature

Welcome to Cross River, Maryland, where Rion Amilcar Scott creates a mythical universe peopled by some of the most memorable characters in contemporary American fiction. Set in the mythical Cross River, Maryland, The World Doesn’t Require You heralds “a major unique literary talent” (Entertainment Weekly). Established by the leaders of America’s only successful slave revolt in the mid-nineteenth century, the town still evokes the rhythms of its founding. With lyrical prose and singular dialect, Rion Amilcar Scott pens a saga that echoes the fables carried down for generations—like the screecher birds who swoop down for their periodic sacrifice, and the water women who lure men to wet death.

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