The Department of English seeks to create and maintain a culturally, intellectually and racially diverse academic community of faculty, students and staff. This commitment stems from our belief that diversity and racial equity within all our fields of knowledge contribute to a superior experience for our students, better preparing them for an increasingly complex society. Through curricular transformation, recruitment, support and outreach we seek to develop an intellectual community--from faculty, to staff, to graduate students, to undergraduates--that reflects the cultural and racial diversity of our state and supports the diversity goals that have been set forth in the University's Mission Statement, the College's Mission Statement, and the Graduate School's 2011 Diversity Report. We affirm diversity and racial equity as critical values that are integral to building intellectual communities across the University, and to advancing the intellectual projects of English language and literary studies.
The UW English Department aims to help students become more incisive thinkers, effective communicators, and imaginative writers by acknowledging that language and its use is powerful and holds the potential to empower individuals and communities; to provide the means to engage in meaningful conversation and collaboration across differences and with those with whom we disagree; and to offer methods for exploring, understanding, problem solving, and responding to the many pressing collective issues we face in our world—skills that align with and support the University of Washington’s mission to educate “a diverse student body to become responsible global citizens and future leaders through a challenging learning environment informed by cutting-edge scholarship.”
As a department, we begin with the conviction that language and texts play crucial roles in the constitution of cultures and communities. Our disciplinary commitments to the study of language, literature, and culture require of us a willingness to engage openly and critically with questions of power and difference. As such, in our teaching, service, and scholarship we frequently initiate and encourage conversations about topics such as race, immigration, gender, sexuality, and class. These topics are fundamental to the inquiry we pursue. We are proud of this fact, and we are committed to creating an environment in which our faculty and students can do so confidently and securely, knowing that they have the backing of the department.
Towards that aim, we value the inherent dignity and uniqueness of individuals and communities. We aspire to be a place where human rights are respected and where any of us can seek support. This includes people of all ethnicities, faiths, genders, national origins, political views, and citizenship status; nontheists; LGBQTIA+; those with disabilities; veterans; and anyone who has been targeted, abused, or disenfranchised.
Department Statement, January 27, 2017
The Department of English values the inherent dignity and uniqueness of individuals and communities. We aspire to be a place where human rights are respected and where any of us can seek support. This includes people of color; people of all faiths, genders, national origins, political views, and citizenship status; LGBQTIA+; those with disabilities; veterans; and anyone who has been targeted, abused, or disenfranchised. In our teaching, service, and scholarship, we frequently initiate and encourage conversations about charged subjects such as race, immigration, gender, sexuality, and class. We are proud of this fact, and we pledge to continue to do so.
Modern Language Association (MLA) Statement on the 2016 Presidential Election
Throughout the campaign and in the aftermath of the presidential election in the United States, sharp political lines have been drawn that pit groups and individuals against one another on the basis of national origin, race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, migration status, ability, class, and other forms of identity. The Modern Language Association reaffirms in the strongest terms possible its commitment to free inquiry and academic freedom for all, unimpeded by acts of prejudice and hate. We note especially the need to offer support to those who are the most vulnerable and condemn the unjust rhetoric that targets them. We recognize that the humanities and humanistic knowledge are now more essential than ever to help guide us in these difficult times, and we pledge to maintain the MLA as an organization open to all individuals who share our commitments.
Campus Diversity Resources
Diversity at the University of Washington
Diversity Research Institute
Disability Resources for Students (DRS)
Graduate Opportunities and Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP)
Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity (OMAD)
UW Women's Center
Native Life and Tribal Relations Office
Samuel E Kelly Ethnic Cultural Center
Directory of Cultural/International Groups