Mission and Vision

Mission Statement:

The mission of the Duquesne University Department of English and Theater Arts is to help students learn to think, read, and write critically and creatively; explore creative work in literature, theater, film, and the visual arts; understand and appreciate diverse voices in our cultural conversations; and communicate ethically and respectfully to a wide variety of audiences and in a wide variety of genres. As a discipline at the heart of a liberal arts model of scholarship and education, we are committed to teaching and research that value the whole person, that seek to make space for diverse perspectives and experiences, and that encourage inquiry that is guided by compassion and respect. The department cultivates an environment in which faculty and students come together to produce original scholarly and creative work. In creating this community, we seek to develop the skills, knowledge, and consciences of the next generation of leaders, and contribute to the personal and professional growth of all Duquesne students.

Core Values:

As a department, we are committed to the following values in the study of literature, film, theater, and writing:

  • We value aesthetic appreciation and creation, seeking to cultivate and deepen our understandings of human imagination and cultures.
  • We value critical inquiry, writing, and analytical communication, written and oral, seeking to develop the capacity to ask and pursue questions, to generate new knowledge, perspectives, and ideas, and to read, write, and perform critically for audiences inside and outside the academy.
  • We value the ethical, compassionate pursuit of these endeavors, emphasizing the importance of literature, film, theater, and writing for understanding and enacting social justice and for enabling each of us to engage with multiple, diverse perspectives and experiences in order to foster dialogue across our differences.

Vision Statement:

As we push further into the 21st century, the department will continue to pursue an expansive notion of our discipline that seeks out new sites of inquiry, emerging methodologies and media, and innovative cross-disciplinary opportunities. We will reassert our commitment to diversity and equity by seeking to make our department a site of unconditional inclusion through our teaching and scholarship. Even as we revise and develop our understanding of our disciplines to meet the needs of the future, we will also maintain our commitment to our core values.

Statement on Inclusion:

The Department of English is dedicated to unconditional inclusion through service to all. This dedication is in keeping with Duquesne's Spiritan commitment to ecumenism, as well as respectful, critical conversations that embrace human diversity and dignity. Through the study of language and literature and performance in its various forms, we aim to equip the next generation of leaders with an understanding of and appreciation for the rich complexity and diversity of the human experience in its creative, sacred and social manifestations. We encourage solidarity between people of all classes, gender identities, races, ethnicities, (dis)abilities/embodiments, sexual identities, ages/generations, religions, nationalities/citizenship status, and other vulnerable groups.