‘In books I find the dead as if they were alive; in books I forsee things to come; in books warlike affairs are set forth; from books come forth the laws of peace’.
Richard de Bury, monk, librarian, book collector (1345).
The School of English at Trinity is one of the oldest in Britain or Ireland, and in 1867 it founded the first ever Chair in English Literature on this island. The School continues to be a leader in the discipline. It is ranked 7th in Europe in QS World University Subject Rankings 2022, and 25th in the world. Today, the School comprises a total of approximately five hundred undergraduates, over one hundred visiting students, and about ninety students who are reading for a higher degree. There are around thirty-two permanent members of staff whose research and teaching expertise encompasses a wide range of areas and topics, and a substantial number of Teaching Associates and Teaching Assistants. The School's achievements include its long-held international reputation for influential research and publication, the intense demand for its English courses from highly qualified undergraduates and postgraduates, and the internationally-recognized high quality of our graduates. Our distinctive commitment to small group teaching, combined with our innovative course design, gives the School an enviable international profile. We believe that small classes create an intellectual environment in which students can begin to articulate their own views and participate in group discussion and debate.
Our teaching takes many different forms: large lectures, small group tutorials and seminars, language workshops, one-to-one consultation and supervision. In the first two years, students are guided through the full range of literature in English, from Beowulf to recent fiction, poetry, and drama from all parts of the English-speaking world, and through literature’s cultural and interpretive contexts.
Members of the teaching staff publish regularly in all areas of current teaching and research activity and there are currently strengths in eighteenth-, nineteenth, and twentieth-century literature, as well as contemporary writing, popular literature, children’s literature, horror and the Gothic, American and postcolonial literature. Irish writing in English, 1590-present is an area of particular strength. Members of the School who are also active as distinguished creative writers include award-winning poets Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, Gerald Dawe, and Harry Clifton, and the writers Eoin McNamee, Deirdre Madden (whose book Molly Fox's Birthday was short-listed for the 2009 Orange Prize for fiction), Carlo Gébler, and Kevin Power.
We hope you enjoy your visit to our website and that you find the information you are looking for. If you are interested in studying with us, or if you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Dr. Jarlath Killeen, Head of School