Literature Department

1901 Vine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103

Neil Simon: Celebrated Playwright: This retrospective features reproductions of Playbills, posters, original letters, and tickets. On display by the Literature Department.

Open today 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Sunday, 2/17 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Monday, 2/18 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Tuesday, 2/19 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Wednesday, 2/20 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Thursday, 2/21 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Friday, 2/22 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, 2/23 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • * Monday had hour changes – Presidents' Day
Sunday 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Monday 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Tuesday 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Wednesday 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Thursday 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Friday 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Upcoming Closures

  • Fri., Apr. 19 : Closed Good Friday
  • Sun., Apr. 21 : Closed Easter
  • Mon., May. 27 : Closed Memorial Day
  • Thu., Jul. 4 : Closed Independence Day
  • Mon., Sep. 2 : Closed Labor Day
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Upcoming Events

Neil Simon: Celebrated Playwright

Now through Sun, Feb 24, 5:00 P.M.

Enjoy the quotes, laughs, insights, and accomplishments of America’s most celebrated Broadway playwright Neil Simon (1927-2018) in this…

Black History Month @ the Oscars: Training Day

Mon, Feb 25, 6:00 P.M.

History was made at the 2002 Academy Awards as Halle Berry became the first African American female to win the Oscar Award for Best Actress in a…

Monday Poets| Fran Baird & Nausheen Eusuf

Mon, Mar 4, 6:30 P.M.

FRAN BAIRD studied with David Ignatow in the 1980s and more recently at the Antioch Writers’ Workshop with Cathy Smith Bowers, John Drury…

Frankenstein: An Interactive Experience

Wed, Mar 6, 12:00 P.M.

Frankenstein has been tantalizing readers since its publication in January, 1818. The novel not only raises moral and ethical questions, it…

Frankenstein: An Interactive Experience

Thu, Mar 7, 12:00 P.M.

Frankenstein has been tantalizing readers since its publication in January, 1818. The novel not only raises moral and ethical questions, it…

Book To Movie Night-Jane Eyre

Mon, Mar 11, 6:00 P.M.

Our first film series for 2019 asks the question: what was better, the book or the movie? Jane Eyre  will be the second movie of this…

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The Literature Department is located with the Art Department in Pepper Hall, 2nd floor, Parkway Central, and houses over 60,000 books of American, English and World Literature. Our collection includes:

  • Poetry, plays, essays, humor, folklore, letters and author biographies
  • Criticism of American, English and World Literature, including criticism of novels and short stories
  • Writing and citation guidebooks
  • Books on movies, theater, journalism and media studies
  • Linguistics and books about the English language
  • ESL and foreign language learning books and CDs

Please note novels and short stories in English and foreign languages are found in Philbrick Hall on the first floor.

Some highlights of the Literature Department’s collection:

The 23-volume Oxford English Dictionary with the four-volume Additions series, invaluable for tracing the etymology and history of English words, is on reference in our Dictionary section.

For anyone one doing 19th century research, we own Poole’s Index to Periodical Literature (1802-1881) and Wellesley Index to Victorian Periodicals (1824-1990).  The full-text of most of the citations listed is available on microfilm.

The Ottemiller Collection, which includes reference copies of significant, English-language plays from 1900-1985.

A large, in-depth collection of works by and about Shakespeare, some of which circulate and some of which are Reference. The collection includes original copies of Howard Henry Furness’s Variorum, and many 18th and 19th century American and English imprints of Shakespeare’s works (in remote storage).  To request any of these items please ask for assistance at the reference desk as they are located in our regional offsite center also known as ROC.

In addition please take a look at our listing of additional electronic resources located here.