Comparative Literature (Interdepartmental)

Director: Thomas Ihde, Languages and Literatures

Advisory Council: Carmen Esteves, Languages and Literatures; Bret Maney, English; Thomas Spear, Languages and Literatures

Participating Departments: Africana Studies; Anthropology; English; History; Languages and Literatures; Latin American and Puerto Rican Studies; Philosophy

Participating Programs: Italian-American Studies, Women's Studies

The interdepartmental major in Comparative Literature leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree. Comparative Literature investigates literary works from the perspective of more than one national literature; works are often studied in conjunction with other intellectual disciplines, such as anthropology, the arts, history, and philosophy. Traditionally, comparatists have focused on literary movements, genres, and historical periods, and on the history of literary themes and ideas, primarily within the context of Western literatures. More recently, comparatists have become interested in emergent and non-Western literatures, in minor genres like biography, in the history of education and the theory of reading, in women's studies, and in literary theory.