students in quad

For Undergraduates: Overview

Can literature help us to know ourselves?
Why do we care about literary characters?
Can fictions be morally improving?
Why is tragedy pleasurable?

Curious? Intrigued? Philosophy + Literature courses and majors will help you discover the answers. The undergraduate program of study gives you access to critics specializing in the full range of national literatures and to philosophers working on theories of language, mind, action, aesthetics, ethics, and political thought. Our aim is to train students in the full range of philosophical tools and traditions (both “continental” and “analytic”), as well as a wide array of critical traditions.


Start with the Gateway Course

Team-taught every year, it’s the best way to explore the power of studying literature and philosophy together.

Go deeper with Courses of Special Relevance

From Classics to Film Studies, from French and Chinese to English and CompLit, we have dozens of courses to consider every year.

Choose a Major Track

The undergraduate major tracks are offered through participating departments.  You can major in Philosophy with a special focus on any national literary tradition, or major in a literature department with a special focus on philosophy.  These tracks provide a structured program of study in each domain of inquiry, together with plenty of opportunities to explore their intersections.

Complete your studies with individualized Capstone Work

Every Philosophy + Literature major takes a capstone seminar specially designed for the program. These seminars bring together advanced undergraduates for high-level, intensive discussion, and each student develops a topic for their own deeper work on an issue related to the theme of the seminar.