Introduction to the Major
Professors talk about what you can learn through this major.
Through literary research, the Literature major aspires to teach critical thinking, to cultivate expressiveness, imagination, creativity, and to promote graduates who possess logicality and sensitivity.
Through its unique language act, literature mixes the worlds of imagination and reality, yet at the same time, it endlessly creates and adds new meanings to the world and revolutionizes the way humans express themselves. As shared values could be a potential impediment in understanding, literature studies challenge us to approach literature from an individual's view point, using the medium of words to create new values.
The mission of literary research in a Liberal Arts education is to confirm the semantic richness of man and world through textual experiences. For this to be done, we must be able to critically read the world, to accept the emotional dimension, which is not necessarily explicable through logic, and to learn how to apply an integrative and intellectual approach. While the current trend is to prioritize rationality and practicality, a major mission for literary research is to appreciate and restore irrationality, which tends to be rejected as being troublesome, to understand and recognize the symbolism inherent in everyday life, and to recover this particular aspect of the world through the medium of words. These aspects of life tend to be disregarded because we are prone to be satisfied through the consumption of superficial or material things rather than the abstract.
The Literature major covers such broad themes as "the records of human activities", "the art of words" and "letters as expression", and deals with various literary forms, extending from Eastern and Western classical literature to more modern forms of literature .
Learning goals for students majoring in Literature are as follows.
- Cultivate a heightened sensitivity towards words, and gain an intuitive understanding of metaphoric and polysemous words.
- Through classes and research papers writing, acquire both traditional and also modern analytical research skills in the field of literature.
- Learn how to objectively analyze texts using critical thinking skills.
- Interpret texts from one's own critical standpoint, supported by theoretical reasoning and taking into account prior research.
- Produce reports and research papers that advance ideas open to others in the communal knowledge domain.
Ultimately, each student produces a senior thesis that integrates the various aspects of the above Learning Goals.