Honors Program

Director: Dr. Amy Clukey, amy.clukey@louisville.edu

318 A Bingham Humanities Building
University of Louisville
Louisville, Kentucky 40292
Phone: (502) 852-2187 Fax: (502) 852-4182
Departmental Telephone: (502) 852-6801

Designed to provide special enrichment opportunities for superior students, the English Honors Program comprises a series of courses that fits within the normal course-load limits. The program consists of two honors seminars (English 401, 402) and an independent study course (English 501) that culminates in an honors thesis. All Honors courses meet WR (writing intensive) requirements and count towards the major.

The seminars are open to honors students only and are designed specifically for them. The seminar format allows students to investigate topics in-depth and to discuss their findings with highly motivated colleagues.

The independent study course, covering a topic of the student's choice, is completed under the direction of an English faculty member. The resultant thesis may be submitted for university and departmental honors.

The student who completes the two seminars and successfully defends the thesis receives an English Honors Certificate.


An English major who has accumulated sixty credit hours with 3.5 English and 3.0 overall averages, completed one course in the series 301,302, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417 and obtained a recommendation from a faculty member may apply for admission to the program.

Honors Thesis Form

Honors Checklist


The Seminars

New seminars are created each semester. These are innovative classes on special topics.

  • HON: ENGL 401 "The Suffragettes - WR, Professor Amy Clukey (Fall 2016)
    2016 is not just an election year: it’s an election year in which a female candidate is a serious contender for the office of President of the United States. Nearly a century after the ratification of the nineteenth amendment that gave women the constitutional right to vote, it’s time to take a look back at American and British women went from being the legal property of their husbands and fathers to fully-fledged citizens and political agents. This course will take an interdisciplinary approach to examine first wave feminism in general and the fight for the vote in particular. We will discuss nineteenth-century gender roles for white and black women, class hierarchies in the feminist movement, anti-feminist activism against women’s suffrage, the connection between women’s rights and imperialism, racism within the women’s movement, and the militant turn of the 1910s. Although many people today associate suffragettes with black-and-white photos of women in big hats, I think you’ll find that first wave feminist activists were far more interested in dismantling strident gender roles, heckling the president, revolutionary suicide, and bomb making than in Victorian femininity.

  • HON: ENGL 401 "Avant-Garde at Black Mnt College" - WR Professor Alan Golding (Fall 2016)
  • This seminar explores the relationship between the arts and education at Black Mountain College (1933-1957), the tiny experimental college in North Carolina that centered its curriculum in the arts and that—in terms both of the figures who taught there in multiple disciplines and the students it produced—became one of the most influential arts institutions of the twentieth century. The literary component of the class focuses on the poetry, short fiction, and cultural theory of the Black Mountain School, those poets who attended or taught at Black Mountain between about 1948 and 1956 and the associated poets who shared the same networks of correspondence and publication into the 1960s. Equally important to the course, however, will be the interaction of literature with major figures in the other arts: Merce Cunningham in dance, John Cage and David Tudor in music, Franz Kline, Willem and Elaine de Kooning, Cy Twombly and Robert Rauschenberg in painting, Mary Caroline Richards in ceramics. A central goal is to pursue the implications of a question posed in the poet Lyn Hejinian's My Life: "Isn't the avant-garde always pedagogical [?]” For the community of artists and students at Black Mountain, what were the connections between experimental art making and cutting-edge thinking about teaching? If all goes according to plan, the seminar will include a field trip to the major retrospective exhibit “Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933-1957” (

University Honors Program

For more information on Honors Programs at the University of Louisville visit their website at http://louisville.edu/a-s/honors/ Link to External Site