10 things to consider before planning a major in English literature


English Literature is a subject that can change your life and make you a different person. This is what graduates of this subject say. It changes your perspective on world issues and makes you quite a cultured person. It is a vast subject which, if you take it seriously, can make you a deep thinker with many other skills and abilities. Speaking of the labor market, it is also growing and is not much of a disappointment in Pakistan. Graduates are employed in multiple positions by many companies. However, you must have a certain temperament and skills in order to select a major in English Literature.

Don’t select it when you have nothing else to study

It is strange that such a broad subject is chosen when the students think there is no other option. Yes, it is a trend in Pakistan that many students choose English Literature when they cannot be admitted into other ‘first priority’ subjects. The same students are unable to cope with the burden of study after the very first semester. There will be a lot to study and learn in this area, so only select it if you really feel like it.

You have to be a good reader

You don’t necessarily have to be someone who has read hundreds of books, but at least you should be a book lover and a good reader. You are going to have a lot of books to read for your presentations and your homework. So, keep this in mind before choosing this topic as your main subject.

See if you can do relevant work

If you want to study English literature, you should consider the job market before that. Would you be good to work in journalism, public relations, academics, entertainment, and creative writing? If so, then this might be the right choice.

Be prepared to study various topics

You are not going to stick to a few literature related subjects, it is a diverse field and you will have to study different subjects. Most of the time, students are not ready to study subjects like philosophy, critical history and cinema, etc. Along with that, you should get a taste of the plays, poetry, and prose.

See if you are interested in writing

You don’t have to be an exceptional writer. But having an interest in writing is a must. You will need to write in-depth homework and articles so that you can express your ideas in words constructively. You will learn to be a good writer, but only when it interests you.

Be prepared to do an in-depth reading

If you think you can get a degree with minimal effort, English literature is not your cup of tea. You should be prepared for a thorough reading. And yes, you will need to read various types of books, from philosophy and history to novels, plays and poetry. If you can’t do it, look for other better options.

Evaluate your critical thinking

Are you a critical thinker? Or do you think you’ll be interested in improving your critical thinking skills? If so, you can choose this field. but if you have the temper of people who don’t think these skills are important to learn and grow, you are by no means a good candidate for literature.

Are you ready to shoulder the burden of important assignments?

If you are looking for an easy subject where you will spend a semester effortlessly, English Literature should not be on your list. It is a subject where one cannot even have a point of view without reading it and preparing for it. So if you are ready to do long assignments and enjoy studying, this might be the right choice.

You must have a good command of the language

A common problem observed among literature students is that they do not have a considerable command of the English language. These students, when asked critical and detailed questions, are not able to produce quality answers as required. If you think English is not the language in which you can learn and grow, then don’t look for this option.

It’s literature, not the English language

A common misconception that many students have before choosing English literature is that the topic is about one language. Language is important but is only a small part of it. This topic is more about history, philosophy, criticism, literature, and other intellectually stimulating topics.

In short, English Literature is a vast subject that requires all of your intellectual, creative and critical skills. Without them you could get a degree in Pakistan, but your abilities will not be sufficient to qualify as a graduate in this subject. So, only go there if you are up to the challenge.


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