Autobiography Long List

The PhD Oral Examination in


The texts below represent key autobiographical works in various national traditions. For additional and alternative works, as well as for recommended secondary sources, see the designated faculty member in this area. All lists must include forty primary and six secondary texts.


  1. St. Augustine, Confessions
  2. Boethius, The Consolation of Philosophy
  3. Abelard, Historia Calamitatum
  4. Dante, La Vita Nuova
  5. Cellini, Autobiography
  6. St. Theresa, Autobiography
  7. Montaigne, Essays
  8. Pascal, Pensées
  9. Rousseau, Confessions
  10. Goethe
    • Design and Truth
    • The Sorrows of Young Werther
  11. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections
  12. Sartre, The Words


  1. Julian of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love
  2. Browne, Religio Medici
  3. Bunyan, Grace Abounding
  4. Cowper, Memoir
  5. Hume, Life
  6. Gibbon, Memoirs
  7. Wordsworth, The Prelude
  8. Coleridge, Biographia Litteraria
  9. Byron, Childe Harold's Pilgrimage
  10. De Quincy, Confessions of an English Opium Eater
  11. Carlyle, Sartor Resartus
  12. Mill, Autobiography
  13. Newman, Apologia pro Vita Sua
  14. Eliot, Four Quartets
  15. Yeats, Autobiography
  16. Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
  17. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers
  18. Orwell
    • "Such, Such Were the Joys"
    • Down and Out in London and Paris
    • Homage to Catalonia


  1. Edwards, Personal Narrative
  2. Franklin, Autobiography
  3. Thoreau, Walden
  4. Whitman, "Song of Myself"
  5. Adams, The Education of Henry Adams
  6. Nabokov, Speak, Memory