The Literature Program
Florida State University
405 Williams Building
Tallahassee, Florida
Phone: 850 644 4230
Fax: 850 644 0811
Robin Goodman, Director

According to the National Research Council, FSU's English Department is among the top-ranked, PhD-granting English Departments in the country. Internationally recognized for their cutting-edge research and publications, our faculty offer a wide range of courses in literary fields, genres, and media. Our program exposes students to provocative questions that spark scholarly engagement and creativity, helping them discuss the social and political impact of literature. Together, we explore literature's various histories, cultures, and philosophical and geographic movements.

Our nationally-recognized History of Text Technologies Program (HoTT) extends from the History of the Book to Digital Humanities as a means of exploring how the history of the forms of texts is also a history of human culture in its largest sense, a history that speaks to how we use texts to establish ways of thinking, means of knowing, and practices of living. In addition to HoTT, we continue to push the boundaries of our scholarship through other highly acclaimed programs, such as the popular and rigorous London Program. Our faculty and students continue to break new ground in researching a wide cross-section of time periods, from medieval literature to early modern dramas to contemporary American poetics. Film and media studies, a fast-growing discipline, have also found a home here as we continue to innovate and grow.


Our program is dedicated to providing student and faculty-led events that facilitate discussion of both professional and research-oriented aspects of the field.

Past Events:


Feminism and Social Justice: The Story of 'No'

Williams 013

3pm on Thursday, January 24th

A Teach-In Led By Dr. Celia Daileader, Prof. Erin Belieu, and Dr. Linda Saladin-Adams


Celebrate Charles Dickens' Birthday with a
Marathon Reading of Bleak House

Strozier Library, First Floor

When: 10am October 2nd - 4pm October 3rd

In honor of the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens' birth, FSU will be reading aloud Bleak House, his most highly acclaimed novel. Over two days and in approximately 30 hours (from 10am on October 2nd to 4pm on October 3) more than 100 FSU students, faculty, and staff will read aloud for 15 minutes from this classic English text.

Wear your birthday party hat if you like, but invite your friends and come along to read with us. No previous knowledge of Dickens required!


Publishing in the 21st Century

A talk by Robert Sloan, an acquisitions editor with Indiana University Press

When: Thursday, April 19, 2012

[listen to this presentation]



Humanities after Hollywood

"How Hollywood Invented the English Department"


"Lessons for the Present"

Friday, February 24th, 5-7pm

In the English Common Room (Williams 013)

Dr. John Marx's research focuses on contemporary fiction and the global adventures of Modernist fiction. His most recent book, Geopolitics and the Anglophone Novel, 1890-2011, is forthcoming from Cambridge University Press. In this project, Marx investigates a broad range of Modernist, colonial, and Post-Colonial works to show how literature can make an important contribution to political and social sciences by creating a space to imagine and experiment with social organization. Marx is also associate editor of Contemporary Literature.


Dr. Mark Cooper's research explores what it means that corporate institutions make movies, and, simultaneously, how movies have helped to define corporate institutions. His most recent book, Universal Women: A Case of Institutional Change, examines the rise and fall of women directors at the Universal Film Manufacturing Company between 1912 and 1919. He is also interim director of Moving Image Research Collections, a position in which he engages multiple initiatives to generate alternative histories from archival motion pictures.


The Literature Program's Critical Theory Movie Series Presents Derrida: The Movie

A unique portrait of Jacques Derrida, one of the most polemical and influential theorists of the end of the 20th century. The film is composed of interviews shot by the filmmakers, Derrida's lectures and speaking engagements, and footage of Derrida's personal life. The filmmakers appropriately explore and push the limits of the documentary genre as they "deconstruct" the French thinker's private and professional life in an attempt to capture the processes of an inquisitive and iconoclastic mind whose theories have completely altered the way we look at history, language, art, and film.

Monday, November 28, 2011, 5:30 p.m., Williams 013

For more information, please e-mail Scott Ortolano at


The Literature Program's Critical Theory Movie Series Presents Theater of War

This film investigates Bertolt Brecht's motives and politics through a Public Theater production of Mother Courage and Her Children. This performance of Tony Kushner's post-9/11 adaptation of Brecht's classic play was produced in downtown New York, just blocks from Ground Zero. The film cuts Brecht's experience of war and exile in the turbulent Europe of the 1930's, when the play was written, with its re-interpretation in the context of America's political and cultural trauma. The film also offers an exclusive look into the craft of actress Meryl Streep, whose performance of Mother Courage was widely acclaimed. Ultimately, the film provides unique critical insight into Brecht, 21st century America, and the craft of theater.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011, 5:30 p.m., Williams 013