Chair’s Welcome

Welcome to the Department of American Culture and Literature!

Our department offers students a unique opportunity to explore the many understandings of the complex histories and cultures of the Americas. A truly interdisciplinary program, our faculty’s expertise includes history, social and cultural theory, literary criticism, cultural studies, gender studies, critical race studies, and popular culture, and ranges from the seventeenth century to the present. Our interdisciplinary focus exposes students to a variety of perspectives and methodologies from the humanities and social sciences. The program is designed to help students develop an integrated and intensive appreciation of the diversity of experiences of North America and the United States, and the many ways it interacts with the rest of the world. Situating the United States within a global context, we seek not only to understand the role that the U.S. plays in the world today, but the manner in which the migration of people, cultural practices and ideas, objects, and resources has shaped the nation and its diverse population.

Our students acquire advanced English-language skills through coursework involving intensive reading, writing, and speaking in that language. We are primarily concerned with fostering critical and analytic thinking skills, not simply the ability to memorize facts and figures. Our students have gone on to graduate study at major universities and institutions, including the University of California at Davis, Penn State University, Washington University, Queen’s University in Canada, Heidelberg University in Germany, University College London, and the London Film School, as well as to graduate work in Bilkent’s departments of Political Science, History, Turkish Literature, and Faculty of Education. Our students have also gone on to pursue a wide range of careers in international and local business, non-governmental organizations, education, and much more. One of our former students has even become a well-known Istanbul-based singer!

We encourage you to explore our website to learn more about our program. Feel free to contact any of our faculty if you have any questions.



Professor Daniel Johnson
American Culture and Literature