The Centre for Comparative Literature at the University of Toronto offers M.A.and Ph.D. programs of study in every major area from classical to contemporary literatures with particular emphasis on literary theory and criticism.

The Centre, founded by Northrop Frye in 1969, is unique in North America in design, purpose and practice. Each student has an individualized curriculum whose aim is to provide a thorough preparation in literary traditions and a rigorous study of different theoretical approaches.

The range of languages, literatures and special resources available at the University of Toronto enables students to explore literary achievements in a vast spectrum of national and linguistic traditions, while the Centre’s strong emphasis on modern literary theory gives their studies critical and methodological coherence.

Besides the fifteen members of the core faculty and the forty members of the Adjunct Faculty, the Centre brings a number of distinguished visiting professors to the campus. In the past, these have included Hans-Georg Gadamer, Tzvetan Todorov, Fredric Jameson, and Jacques Derrida. Paul Ricoeur’s The Rule of Metaphor and Wolfgang Iser’s The Act of Reading were originally given as lecture series in the Centre. Every year, since 1979, the privately endowed Northrop Frye Professorship in Literary Theory has enabled the Centre to appoint such outstanding scholars as Robert Weimann, Ralph Cohen, Hugh Kenner, Wladimir Krysinski, Edward Said, Mieke Bal, Sander Gilman, Barbara Herrnstein-Smith, Julia Kristeva, Derek Walcott, Charles Taylor, Natalie Davis, Tilottama Rajan, Michael Holquist, Leonard Findlay to teach one course on a special topic in Comparative Literature and to give public lectures for the University community.