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10 Things You’ll Only Understand If You’re An English Literature Major

10 Things You’ll Only Understand If You’re An English Literature Major

If you're an English Literature major then you will know it's a tricky subject with many struggles but also many great things... here are just a few.

Now some may think that a degree in English Literature is easy. Those people obviously didn’t do a degree in English. It’s a tough subject matter that requires a lot of extra reading and time to do well in, so here are some things you’ll only understand if you’re an English Literature Major.

1. Barely finishing reading one set text before moving onto the next

In English Literature degrees you often have several books to get through in a semester and it often seems like by the time you’ve finished reading one book then you are straight onto the next without a lot of time to really think. Sometimes you wonder if it’s worth just reading a plot summary given the amount of time you actually spend on them. But of course, you don’t, because you are an English Literature Major.

2. Having a TBR pile as long as your arm

Because you have so many set texts to read, reading for pleasure is a thing of the past and so your to be read list is pretty long. You hear about all these great novels coming out and you buy them but very rarely do we get time to read them before the hype has passed.


3. The smell of new books

Because you buy so many books – for both school and for your own pleasure-  you get to revel in that new book smell regularly, and you love it. The first flick through clean pages is the best one.

4. Spending countless amounts of money on new books

The amount of money spent on set texts and your own reading books is shameful, but you regret nothing.

5. Having battered books

Again, because there are so many themes to focus on and so many great quotes and points you can make, your set texts look slightly battered. With dog-eared pages *gasp*, scribbles in margins and highlighted quotes you are not really an English Literature Major if your books don’t have at least one of these.


6. Nitpicking films that are based on books

This one isn’t just for English Literature majors but for bookworms too! Watching a film adaptation of your favourite book can be cringe at best. And at worst, quite painful.

7. Quoting from a book and then losing the page

When writing one of your thousands of essays (all due for the same day, why?) you base some analysis on a great quote from somewhere in the text but when it comes to referencing it, the quote is magically gone and you are sent into a blind rage.

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8. Eternal love for Libraries

Most people can appreciate a good library but none better than an English Literature Major. When you see a good library you can understand why Belle fell for Beast, right?

9. The embarrassment you feel when you make a grammatical error

Nobody is perfect and just because you are an English Literature Major people shouldn’t assume you know everything there is to know about the English language. However, it is deeply embarrassing when you get picked up on a simple error like the difference between your and you’re.

10. You are proofreader to all

You are hired to proofread for friends, family and flatmates because of your Major even though most of the time your eyes are too tired to pick up on mistakes, because of all that reading you’ve been doing. But still, you do it gladly because of that bit of pride you get from being asked.

Do you major in English Lit and can you relate to any of these? Comment below if you can think of any other things only English Lit Majors can understand.
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