Johanna Schüpbach: Subject Librarian


© Peter Schnetz

(Anglophone Language and Literature, General Linguistics, University of Basel Library)

When I first came to Basel, I was dead set on studying American Literature but couldn’t imagine much else. Little did I know that my time at the English Department would bring me so much more, expand my horizon of interests, grow my love of stories, and generally exceed my wildest expectations.

My years spent as a student at the Department of English have not only sparked interests in different areas of study but also allowed me to explore a variety of subjects and discover new research fields. Eventually, I was actually more drawn to British literature!

I thoroughly enjoyed the immersive experience that the Department’s other offerings provided: As part of the Gay Beggars Drama Group I got to know a wholly different approach to working with texts and improving my spoken English; as a member of the student committee I helped organize events such as movie nights, Halloween and end-of-term parties; and as a student assistant I had the chance of gaining insight into the administrative, academic, and research-oriented processes at the Department.

I have also always greatly appreciated the fact that everyone was so approachable. The professors and teaching staff are always there for their students, and are happy to advise and provide guidance. Studying at the English Department is a true privilege: the gorgeous rooms have always made the place feel warm and inviting. And I felt a bit of pride whenever I could show someone around the Department and would get comments like “Wow! This feels a bit like Hogwarts!”

I can only recommend soaking up all that the Department of English has to offer. There is so much going on – events, guest lectures, theatre performances, coffee/ tea breaks, summer afternoons spent in the courtyard, excursions, and so much more – you won’t regret it!