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
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.
Joshua B. Nelson