Literature and Writing

Enhance your creativity while developing communication and writing skills that can serve you in any career path. Deepen your understanding and enjoyment of literature by examining intricate threads woven through the works of writers ranging from Shakespeare and Dickens to Toni Morrison and Jhumpa Lahiri.

Student sitting in class

Studying Literature and Writing nurtures your creative spirit while sharpening your critical skills

You'll study poetry, drama, novels, children's literature, films, and television—guided by award-winning faculty with expertise in prose, poetry, drama, children's literature, and media studies—and discover your own style and talent as an analytical and creative writer, as well as your own skills as a literary critic.

Our students go on to careers in law, publishing, advertising, business, government service, technology, media, journalism, writing and teaching. As a minor in Literature & Writing, with the ability to read carefully, analyze complex and sophisticated material, and communicate clearly in written and verbal form, your skills will always be in demand.

A minor in Literature & Writing requires five courses from departmental offerings, including LTWR 199 and at least one course at the 200 or 300 level.

Transfer students: The Department of Literature & Writing will accept up to three Literature or Writing classes transferred in toward the Literature & Writing minor; we require grades of C or above in these classes. Transfer classes will not satisfy the 200 or 300- level requirement.

We encourage our students to augment their required courses with in-depth study in the liberal arts and additional courses in the major. Dual-degrees, interdisciplinary programs, and a wide range of minors are also available. You'll work with your advisor to develop a coherent course program that will meet your educational goals.

We also offer a minor in English for students pursuing other majors. A minor in English requires five courses from departmental offerings, including ENGL 199 and at least one course at the 200 or 300 level.

Our students take advantage of internships in Boston and beyond, building their skills and resumes and learning from mentors in their fields. Simmons English majors have interned at:

  • Charlesbridge Publishing
  • The Actors' Shakespeare Project
  • The Boston Casting Co
  • Make-a-Wish Foundation
  • Brookline Center for the Arts
  • Horn Book Magazine
  • Candlewick Press
  • Boston Ballet
  • Horticulture Magazine
  • MIT Press
  • Harvard Museum of Natural History
  • Blackwell Publishing
  • Beacon Press 
  • The Museum of Fine Arts 
  • Children's Television Workshop
  • Comcast
  • Versus News
  • Blueberry Hill Productions
  • Woburn Public School System Libraries
  • Raytheon BBN Technologies
  • Teen Voices Magazine
  • Boston Casting Company

Previous senior theses have included:

  • Teaching Holocaust Literature and Film
  • Learning Heterosexuality in Homosocial Spaces: The Paradox of Competing Homosocial and Homosexual Interests of Victorian Boys’ School Stories
  • Poems Beyond the Page: The Active Art of Reading Poetry
Academic Campus under a blue sky

Fall 2023 Literature and Writing Courses

Learn more about the Department of Literature and Writing's courses for Fall 2023.

Fall 2023 Courses

Spotlight on Literature and Writing Students and Alums

Passionate Leaders Project Students Spring 2023

Passionate Leaders Project: Spring 2023 Cohort

The Passionate Leaders Project (PLP) supports Simmons undergraduates by enriching their academic and professional interests beyond the confines of the classroom. Students may request up to $4,000 to support their research, internships, and creative endeavors. This semester's cohort is producing...

Photo of Kate Clifford Larson

Kate Clifford Larson ’80 ’95MA Writes History through the Eyes of Women

Historian Kate Clifford Larson '80 '95MA is the author of Bound for the Promised Land: Harriet Tubman, Portrait of an American Hero (2003, Penguin Random House), The Assassin's Accomplice: Mary Surratt and the Plot to Kill Abraham Lincoln (2008, Basic...

Evelyn Bernard '20

Evelyn Bernard ’20 Inspires Young Students as Montessori School Teacher

Recent graduate Evelyn Bernard shares her experience teaching at a Montessori school, which introduces students to an ethical worldview at a young age. Tell us about the kind of work that you do. I am a lead Children's House teacher...

Elinor Lipman and Mameve Medwed

Elinor Lipman ’72 Reflects on her Friendship with Mameve Medwed ’64

Elinor Lipman ’72 and Mameve (Stern) Medwed ’64 did not overlap at Simmons, but met later at a fiction workshop, bonding over their shared love of literature and writing. With 21 published books between them, and numerous awards and accolades...

Working for Social Justice with Mytrang Nguyen ’93

Why did you decide to attend Simmons? The idea of a woman-centered education was appealing to me, as I had attended an all-girl’s school in the Washington D.C. area since the fourth grade. I had family members who had attended...

Headshot of Wendy Gordon and book cover art of It's Always 9/11

Wendy Gordon ‘76 Publishes Prescient Dystopian Novel

Gordon's latest novel, "It's Always 9/11" follows a woman returning from a remote backpacking trip to a news report of a mysterious illness gripping New York City. In her novel, Gordon explores themes of technocratic control, and the impact of fear on behavior.

Headshot of Kayla Zarella

Fostering Inclusive Communities: Kayla Zarella '21 Reflects on her Experience as SGA President

As Student Body President and mentor for Strong Women, Strong Girls, Kayla Zarella '21 understands the importance of developing empowering, inclusive communities. Read Kayla's thoughts on the last four years and how Simmons helped shape her into a true leader.

Headshot of Cara MacKenzie

Undergraduate Symposium Keynote Speaker Cara MacKenzie '21 on the The Trauma of Irish Womanhood

Cara MacKenzie '21 is a keynote speaker at the 2021 Undergraduate Symposium! Learn more about their project, "The Trauma of Irish Womanhood: An Examination of the Masculine Nation State in Literature and History."