Advanced work in literature at Marlboro can take many forms, and the faculty has interest in areas ranging from gothic literature to narratives of migration and diaspora, from French existentialists and Latin American literature to American regionalism to poetry in translation. Students may study literature from a technical, thematic, historical, or theoretical perspective. They may read literature for its philosophical or socio-political content. Those doing Plans with literature as one component may find it their primary interest, with supporting work in history or philosophy or anthropology or biology or art. Or they may find literature itself a supporting context for work in writing or in other fields in the humanities or other areas. Students working in literature gain skills in reading with attention, building arguments, and considering alternate worldviews.

Students intending to focus primarily in literature should take a broad historical range of literature courses, at least one course with a strong component of literary theory, and preferably some course or courses that provide historical context. Those working with literature in other languages should ideally acquire at least a reading fluency in those languages; even work with literature in translation should be supported by some work in the relevant language whenever possible.

Areas of Interest for Plan-level Work:

  • Poetry and Poetics
  • Global Anglophone Literature
  • Theories of the Novel
  • American Literature
  • Postcolonial Literature
  • British Literature
  • Spanish and Latin American Literature
  • Memoirs and Autobiographies
  • Modernism and Avant-Garde Movements
  • Graphic Fiction
  • Fantasy and Science Fiction
  • Children’s Literature

Sample Tutorial Topics

  • Domestic Space in Theory and Fiction
  • Writers Engaging Race: William Faulkner and Toni Morrison
  • The Short Story
  • Children’s Fantasy Literature
  • Narratives of Trauma and Witnessing
  • New Media and Interactive Literature
  • The Experimental Novel
  • The Trickster Diaspora
  • Magical Realism


(a mostly random selection of Marlboro microdestinations)