ICLA Convention, Paris, July 2013: Why Comparative Literature (Seminar)--Proposals Due 06/01/2012

full name / name of organization: 
International Comparative Literature Association
contact email: 
Raina Kostova (rkostova@jsu.edu) and Petra Schweitzer (pschweit@su.edu)

Why Comparative Literature?

The loose boundaries of comparative literature have continuously raised questions about the scholarly value and practical use of the field. This seminar proposes to explore the significance of comparative literature as academic discipline where the worth of global literatures in the field of humanities is persistently challenged by the pragmatic orientation of public opinion.

In these conditions, Comparative Literature finds itself on the defense concerning its applicability for a new generation of students and scholars, who do not see an immediate use for literary studies. How can we justify the necessity for Comparative Literature for the 21st century university student and administration? What can Comparative Literature Departments and Programs offer to academia? How can we justify the need for scholars with graduate degrees in Comparative Literature who have often found themselves in the margins of employment because of their assumed eclecticism or amateurism? Can the field of Comparative Literature serve as a space within academia that perpetually confronts not only national boundaries between literatures and cultures, but also the neatly defined boundaries between academic disciplines and fields? Can we think of Comparative Literature as a constant rethinking of the value and structure of higher education?

1. Please submit your abstract of no more than 300 words by June 1, 2012 to the ICLA website: http://icla-ailc-2013.paris-sorbonne.fr/appel-a-communications.html
Contact information: Raina Kostova (rkostova@jsu.edu) and Petra Schweitzer (pschweit@su.edu)

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