The Struggle Of Being An English Major
Politics and Activism

The Struggle Of Being An English Major

Why I feel like I'm majoring in everything and nothing.

The Struggle Of Being An English Major

At eighteen years of age, students fresh out of high school are expected to choose a major at their respective college. At eighteen years of age students are expected to decide what career field they desire to work in for the rest of their life. At eighteen years of age freshman in college may be making of the biggest decisions in their life- and they have no idea what is in store for them.

When I attended my Freshman Orientation session for my small, Catholic, university, I undoubtedly knew I wanted to be an English major. I had fallen in love with the idea of wanting to teach upper-level English courses and inspire other students about the power of reading and writing. And as I begin my Sophomore year in college I continue to major in English, with a minor in History (my minor is just for shits and gigs mostly). But as my class difficulty increases, and my stress levels rise, I begin to wonder what majoring in English really means.

I am currently taking three English classes, one History class and one Political-Science class, all of which are difficult and challenging courses. I spend my time reading, analyzing, writing, and reading some more. All I do is read and write- which I signed up for I guess considering I am not required to take any math or science classes at this time. But what is being an English major really about? If I am constantly reading and writing and discussing the literary criticisms of such and such famous authors- what am I really learning?

And so I've come to the dramatic conclusion that being an English major is the major of everything and nothing. Everything because I major in the ability to read instructive, formative, and famous literary classics. But nothing because what do those classics really do for me in my life right now? Yes, books are enjoyable and fun I suppose, but what am I gaining from these readings? One could easily argue that I'm gaining knowledge, fresh perspective, etc. but sometimes I genuinely feel that what I am reading now will have no significance in 100 years.

But I like being and English major- or at least I think I do. It's not like incoming Freshman are exactly sure what they want to major in or even what those majors include when scheduling classes. But I have seemed to do pretty-well in my previous English courses, and I like the creative aspect of writing, so I guess I'll stick with it for the time being. Who knows what the world has in store for me over the next couple years as I continue to pursue my BA, but for now, I am satisfied with being an English major, cumulating knowledge of everything and nothing.

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