COL1000H | 2017-2018

Coordinator: U. Esonwanne
Time: Fall term, Fridays, 1-3
COL1000H is a general introduction to Comparative Literature, to contemporary theory, and to criticism. Its purpose is to offer all incoming MA and PhD students with some exposure to key issues in the discipline. Organized around the broad by Barbara Havercrofttheme of “Bases for Comparison,” each weekly seminar will explore a subtheme over two sessions. In the first session, we will examine issues raised in an essay selected for that week. In the second session, participating faculty will join us in the exploration of issues pertaining to comparison across different media, disciplines, and literary genres and traditions.

– Participation: 20% (includes attendance and contribution to discussions)
– Position papers: 40% (2 papers, 4–5 pages each; the first is due Friday, October 14, the second Friday, November 18; please submit by email as MS Word document).
– Research essay: 40% (due Friday, January 17, 2017; in 5000–7000 words, critically explore an issue that arose from the themes covered in the course; please use MLA Documentation and submit by email as MS Word document).



September 22:  Comparison: Tradition and Its Others by Jill Ross
Edward Said,  “Introduction: Secular Criticism,” The World, the Text, and the Critic.
Erich Auerbach, “Odysseus’s Scar,” Mimesis.
Auerbach, “Figura,” Scenes from the Drama of European Literature.

September 29Exploring non-places by Thomas Lahusen
– Marc Augé, Non-Places: An Introduction to Supermodernity (Verso 2008 [1995]).
– Andreassen, et al., Persistent Memories: Pyramiden – A Soviet Mining Town in the High Arctic

October 6:  Reception, Recycling, and Ideology by Mary Nyquist
Emily Apter, Against World Literature, On the Politics of Untranslatability
Andrew O’Malley, Children’s Literature, Popular Culture, and Robinson Crusoe
Mary Nyquist, “Friday as Fit Help”, Milton in the Long Restoration.

October 13  Comparative Media by Ruoyon Bai
– Joseph Tabbi, “Electronic Literature as World Literature; or, The Universality of Writing under Constraint”, Poetics Today, 2010, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp. 17 – 50

October 20: Grounds for Comparison: the System of Nation States by Veronika Ambros
– Pascale Casanova, “Literature, Nation, and Politics”
– Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, “What is a Minor Literature?” Towards a Minor Literature
Karel Capek, “RUR”

October 27 : Comparison in Practice: Trauma by Barbara Havercroft
– Michael Rothberg, “Introduction,” Multidirectional Memory: Remembering the Holocaust in the Age of Decolonization.
– Roger Luckhurst, “Introduction,” The Trauma Question.
– Susan J. Brison, “The Uses of Narrative in the Aftermath of Violence,” On Feminist Ethics and Politics.

November 17Translateability by Rebecca Comay
Walter Benjamin, The Task of the Translator

November 24 : Untranslatables by Neil ten Kortenaar
Emily Apter, Against World Literature,  On the Politics of Untranslatability

December 01:  “Words and Images, Autobiography and Photography” by Julie LeBlanc
– *Jonathan Culler, “Comparative Literature at Last”
– A brief synopsis of a few books on Photography and Autobiographical Narrative
– Liliane Louvel, Poetics of the Inconotext
– Barthes interview, “On Photography”

December 08
by Eric Cazdyn



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