The department of English debuted its journey from the very inception of the college in the year 1946 under the leadership of the first principal Rev.Fr.C.Browne (1946-49), a renowned professor of English and French. Fr. A Fleury was the eminent professor and Head of the department. He had his M.A.degree from Cambridge and Licencies letters from Paris.When Sri. C.J.Verkey became Principal (1949-51), the department was in a fortunate position of having an Englishman of scholarly attainments to handle English classes.With the exit of Mr. F.J.Stephen and Mr. C.V.Ramaswamy, Mr. S.S Hoskot and Mr.H.K Ramachandramurthy added luster to the department. Mr.John.J.Pinto and Mr. D.S.Gordon, the popular professors of English were like Lilies of the department at the early stage of the college
The department was privileged to have for a short duration a reputed person Prof. M.Gopala Krishna Adiga, aluminary in the modernist movement of Kannada. He was a poet , a critic and a competent teacher of English. He was a mighty influence on the staff and students of the College. Another influential teacher and gentleman, who served the department from 1952 onwards till his superannuation in 1983,was Prof.M.S.Krishna Rao, who became the Head of the Department after the retirement of F.A.Fleury on 31st December 1975. Another eminent teacher who worked devotedly in the department of English was Fr. N.Devaraj who was also the bursar of the College. Though he did not assume the headship of the department,he was a very popular teacher and a persona grata to one and all. When he passed away in May 1979, the vacancy was filled in by Prof. A.John Siluvai,picked up among many aspirants to the post.
After the superannuation of Prof.M..Kishna Rao on 31st December 1988, Prof. Ramdas Pai steered the department with the confreres consisting of Prof. A.John Siluvai, Prof.K.P.Vaudevan,Prof.C.Srinivas and Rev.Fr. Leslie Moras till he retired on 31st December 1992.
The academic year 1992 was a watershed in the growth and development of the department.Cosmetic changes started blooming in the entire academics and premises of the college,when Rev.Fr.Leslie Moras,the energetic and young faculty of English became the Eleventh Principal of the college.In the same year Prof.A.John Siluvai became the head of the department . It was the beginning of the golden period of progress in the department of English.The number of students seeking Optional English as one of the core subjects had a tremendous leap from 12 to 50 .With the initiative of the Principal and positive cooperation of the English fraternity, the department saw the birth of the UGC-Sponsored core subject called Functional English in the year 1996. Though it is an offshoot of the department of English,it started functioning independently as a vocational course with the help of Mrs.June Gaur,a talented free-lance journalist
After the superannuation of Prof .John Siluvai,Prof.K.P Vasudevan became the head of English in 2002 and he continued to serve till he reached the retirement in 2006.Apart from being an English teacher achaic, he earned a name and fame as Secretary of MUPCTA and worked unremittingly for the cause of the teaching fraternity. When Pof.C.Srinivas became the head of the department , the college became autonomous with the title of potency for excellence.After his peaceful and pleasant stint,Fr.Leslie Moras ,the Principal himself became n 2013, the Head of the department consisting of talented dames and damsels , a vibrant example of women empowerment and a beacon of feministic force.
Guided by the twin ideals of inculcating and developing a sensitive appreciation of literature, the department has made a diligent selection of literacy and critical texts . One of the overriding concerns has been to offer a selection of canonical, fundamental and experimental texts,keeping in mind that there is a fair representation given to each genre and period. In order to promote independent writing,practical criticism of prose and poetry has been included in the course content.More over with the aim of honoring the skills of the students in discursive reading of texts , session on comparative studies are included as part of students presentations. Influential video lectures and TED talks are screened to initiate critical debates.
The UGC sponsored vocational course in Functional English was introduced in the year 1996.It was originally termed as Communicative English and subsequently altered as functional English. It was part and parcel of the Department of English.Later on ,it was de-linked from the department of English and started functioning as an independent department.
The department offers Alternate English as second language to foreign students hailing from Anglophone countries and from the other states of India who cannot choose from the existing options of Indian Vernacular tongues like Kannada,Hindi,Tamil,Malayalam,Telugu,Urdu or the foreign language like french. The syllabus is designed to offer a flavor of Indian writing in English and new literature’s in English. The Department holds special classes to help students to learn basic English.
The literary club of the English Dept.Organised a UGC sponsored National seminar on Feminist Aesthetics in the appreciation of literary text in English in Collaboration with center for women studies,University of Mysore on March 23rd 2013.
Future plan of action:
The department plans
- to inculcate life skill and value based education to make students into responsible citizens of the world
- to promote Research Projects on a minor scale.
- to become a model Department at College level ,State level and National level in ensuring unity in diversity through meticulously designed teaching /learning experiences.
- to develop the mind ,body and soul of all our students ,to help them strive for excellence in their quest for comprehensive scholarship to become independent and self-regulated lifelong learners in the culturally diverse global society