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Native American Literary Studies

Since 1969, with its offering of the first university course in Native American literature taught anywhere, the University of Oklahoma English Department has ranked among the preeminent institutions in the nation for the study of American Indian literature. Regular graduate courses include Native American Fiction, Native American Poetry, Native American Women Writers, and Native American Non-Fiction and Criticism. Faculty specialize in writers of the Native American Renaissance, contemporary poetry, women's writing, film, and literary theory, with interests ranging from the seventeenth up to the twenty-first century.

We offer unparalleled resources across campus, from extensive main library holdings and rare archival materials in the Western History Collection, to the expertise found in departments across campus, such as Native American Studies, History, Anthropology, Art and Art History, the Law School, and more, in which many faculty specialize in Native American scholarship. Positioned in the heart of Indian country and with a large number of Native students in the department and across campus, incoming students will also find opportunities for community involvement and supportive academic environments.

The department's alternative language requirement can be fulfilled by demonstrable proficiency in any indigenous language, or by coursework taken in Native languages offered on campus, which currently include Cherokee, Cheyenne, Choctaw, Creek, and Kiowa.

Faculty are committed to preparing graduate students through preparation in coursework, mentoring, and professional development. Students have published their work in prominent journals and presented at national and local conferences. The English graduate student association SAGES has sponsored graduate student conferences with strong Native focuses. Teaching assistantships are competitive with peer institutions, and financial assistance for dissertation completion and conference travel is available through the department and Graduate College. The department has been very successful in helping students in the field find tenure-track positions.

English faculty specializing in American Indian literature include Alan Velie, Geary Hobson, Kimberly Roppolo, and Joshua B. Nelson. Faculty members throughout the department are cognizant of the value of including Native texts and perspectives in their curricula.


Alan Velie

Geary Hobson

Kimberly Roppolo

Joshua B. Nelson














These pages are maintained by Jack Day, English Computer Lab Manager.