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“Why do you study English when you are fluent?

August 27th, 2010 sablan12

Melbourne Uni, short for University of Melbourne, is an acceptable response to all those inquiring where I am studying abroad for the year.  “So, what are you studying?” tends to be the next question.


“Huh?” [insert awkward silence paired with a blank expression]

In order to break the silence, I quickly add “ I am also a Creative Writing concentrator…”

“Ah, brilliant! That’s wonderful”

It took me a little while to understand why no one really seemed to value  English majors, but did favor those who took up Creative Writing. My confusion was cleared up by a fellow Holy Crosser and English major when I posed the question to him, someone who had also been receiving a similar response from people.

He was quick to tell me that one of the girls he was talking to came right out and asked “Why do you study English when you are fluent?” I couldn’t help but laugh, mostly because I was relieved that it wasn’t an Australian unspoken truth to dislike English majors. Since then I have stopped being so paranoid, and simply respond “Arts”.

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