June 23-July 3

Grounds for Comparison, David Damrosch

As we widen the scope of literary studies beyond a national or regional focus, we need to consider freshly the grounds for discussing and comparing works that are not necessarily or primarily linked by relations of direct influence and imitation. This seminar will take up a number of important discussions of the problems and possibilities for comparison and incomparability across time and space, with readings in Detienne, Moretti, Casanova, Apter, Young, and others. We will test these theories against a variety of literary cases, including comparisons of Du Fu and Wordsworth, Molière and Chikamatsu, Gogol and Lu Xun, James Joyce and Clarice Lispector, Eileen Chang and Ang Lee.

David DamroschDavid Damrosch is Director of the Institute for World Literature and Professor and Chair of the Department of Comparative Literature, Harvard University, USA. A past president of the American Comparative Literature Association, he has written widely on comparative and world literature. His books include What Is World Literature? (2003), The Buried Book: The Loss and Rediscovery of the Great Epic of Gilgamesh (2007), and How to Read World Literature (2009). He is the founding general editor of the six-volume Longman Anthology of World Literature (2004), editor of Teaching World Literature (2009), co-editor of The Princeton Sourcebook in Comparative Literature (2009), and co-editor of a recent collection, Xin fangxiang: bijiao wenxue yu shijie wenxue duben [New Directions: A Reader of Comparative and World Literature] (Peking U. P., 2010).

Session 1: Introduction: What Is “Literature”?

  • Poems for comparison by Sappho and Catullus; Du Fu and Wordsworth
  • Anandavardhana and Alejandra Pizarnik; Aztec poems

Session 2: Reading across Cultures

  • Marcel Detienne, “Constructing Comparables”
  • Molière, The Bourgeois Gentilhomme
  • Chikamatsu Monzaemon, Love Suicides at Amijima

Session 3: Evolution and Diffusion

  • H. M. Posnett, “Relativity of Literature”
  • Franco Moretti, “Conjectures on World Literature,”
  • "Evolution, World-Systems, Weltliteratur
  • Sonnets by Petrarch, Wyatt, Labé, and Shakespeare
  • Short stories: Higuchi Ichiyo, “Separate Ways,"
  • James Joyce, "The Sisters," "Eveline," and Clarice Lispector, "Happy Birthday"

Session 4: Comparative Peripheries (1)

  • Gogol, “Diary of a Madman”
  • Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Yellow Wallpaper”
  • Lu Xun, “A Madman’s Diary”
  • Hu Shih, “Some Modest Proposals for the Reform of Literature”
  • Selected pages from New Youth magazine

Session 5: Comparative Peripheries (2)

  • Oswald de Andrade, “The Cannibalist Manifesto”
  • Jorge Luis Borges, “The Argentine Writer and Tradition”
  • Pascale Casanova, “Literature, Nation, and Politics”
  • Borges, “Pierre Menard”
  • Julio Cortázar, “Axolotl”
  • Clarice Lispector, selections from Crónicas

Session 6: Globalization and the Politics of Language

  • Salman Rushdie, “Imaginary Homelands”    
  • Robert J. C. Young, “World Literature and Postcolonialism”
  • Rudyard Kipling, selections from Kim
  • Salman Rushdie, “Chekov and Zulu”
  • Jamyang Norbu, selections from The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes

Session 7: World Languages, World Literatures

  • Stephen Owen, “Stepping Forward and Back: Issues and
  • Possibilities for 'World' Poetry"
  • Emily Apter, “A New Comparative Literature”
  • Derek Walcott, “Volcano,” “The Fortunate Traveller”
  • Agha Shahid Ali, selected ghazals

Session 8: Global Media

  • Denilson Lopes, “Global Cinema, World Cinema”
  • Zhang Ailing (Eileen Chang), “Lust, Caution”
  • Ang Lee, Lust, Caution; with an evening screening of the film
  • Young-hae Chang Heavy Industries, “Dakota,” “DMZ Tour with Bulgoki Lunch,” and “Cunnilingus in North Korea” 


Comparing Copies, Jacob Edmond

To approach literature beyond a single language, nation, region, or period is to recognize its overwhelming diversity: the variety of the world’s literatures or even the variety of the world’s world literatures. So goes one familiar argument for the renewal of comparative and world literature in the twenty-first century. Yet this seminar highlights the opposite view. It begins with the proposition that repetition, not difference, is an increasingly dominant feature of world literary production and the master trope underlying theories of comparative and world literature––from studies of typology, influence, and translation to postcolonial critiques of Orientalist appropriation and Eurocentric frameworks of comparison. By reading literary works that foreground acts of iteration––including appropriation, plagiarism, translation, and repetitions across media––alongside theories of comparative and world literature, the seminar sets out to question commonplace preferences for originality and difference and anxieties about copying and repetition that infuse many of these theories. How, the seminar asks, might recognizing the role of repetition in literary practice and theory allow us to address the expanded scale, speed, and geographical reach of copying in our age of globalization and digital technologies?

Jacob EdmondJacob Edmond works on theories and practices of comparison in modern and contemporary literature with a particular focus on generic and inter-art boundary crossing, new media, and globalization in avant-garde poetry in Russian, Chinese, and English. He is author of A Common Strangeness: Contemporary Poetry, Cross-Cultural Encounter, Comparative Literature (Fordham University Press, 2012), co-editor of Recentring Asia: Histories, Encounters, Identities (Brill, 2011), and co-editor and co-translator of Yang Lian’s Unreal City: A Chinese Poet in Auckland (Auckland University Press, 2006). His articles have appeared in journals such as Comparative Literature, Contemporary Literature, Poetics Today, and The China Quarterly. He is associate professor in English at the University of Otago, New Zealand.

Session 1: Classic

  • Dmitri Prigov, Mantra of Russian High Culture (audio recording).
  • Alexander Pushkin, Eugene Onegin, translated by James E. Falen (Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois UP, 1990), chapter 1, stanzas I–II.
  • Caroline Bergvall, “Via,” Fig: Goan Atom 2 (Cambridge, UK: Salt, 2005).
  • Dante, Inferno, trans. Anthony Esolen (Modern Library Classics), canto 1.
  • Stephen Owen, “Stepping Forward and Back: Issues and Possibilities for ‘World’ Poetry.” Modern Philology 100.4 (2003).
  • David Damrosch, “World Literature in a Postliterary Age,” Modern Language Quarterly 74:2 (June 2013).
  • Franco Moretti, “Evolution, World-Systems, Weltliteratur,” Studying Transcultural Literary History, ed. Gunilla Lindberg-Wada (Berlin; New York: W. de Gruyter, 2006).

Session 2: Echo

  • Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, “Echo,” New Literary History, Vol. 24, No. 1 (Winter, 1993).
  • Vanessa Place, “Echo” (audio recording and transcript).
  • Ovid, Metamorphoses Bk. III.
  • Craig Dworkin, from “The Fate of Echo,” Against Expression: An Anthology of Conceptual Writing (Evanston, IL: Northwestern UP, 2011).
  • Djelal Kadir, “World Literature: The Allophone, the Differential, and the Common,” Modern Language Quarterly 74:2 (June 2013).

Session 3: Copy

  • Isabel Hofmeyr, from “Indian Opinion: Texts in Transit,” Gandhi’s Printing Press: Experiments in Slow Reading (Harvard UP, 2013).
  • Sergei Tretyakov, “The Writer and the Socialist Village,” October 118 (Fall 2006).
  • Walter Benjamin, “The Newspaper,” Selected Writings, ed. Marcus Bullock, Howard Eiland, Mi­chael W. Jennings, and Gary Smith, trans. Edmund Jephcott et al., 4 vols. (Cambridge, MA: Belknap, 1996–2003), vol. 2.
  • Katerina Clark, from “The Author as Producer: Cultural Revolution in Berlin and Moscow (1930–1931),” Moscow: The Fourth Rome (Cambridge: Harvard UP, 2011).
  • Hsia Yü et al. “Cross it Out, Cross it Out, Cross it Out: Erasurist Poetry from Taiwan's Poetry NowAsymptote 9 (Feb 2012): http://www.asymptotejournal.com/article.php?cat=Visual&id=14&curr_index
  • Dmitri Prigov, Caspar David Friedrich’s Vision of Russia’s Tibet, photo of installation exhibited in the Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, 2004.
  • Kenneth Goldsmith, from Day (Figures, 2003), A2.

Session 4: Copyright

Session 5: Translate

  • Jonathan Stalling, from Yíngēlìshī 吟歌丽诗 (Counterpath, 2011): "Introduction" and "Everday English" and online: http://jonathanstalling.com/yingelishi.html.
  • Yunte Huang, from SHI: A Radical Reading of Chinese Poetry (Roof, 1997).
  • Jing Tsu, “Lin Yutang’s Typewriter,” Sound and Script in Chinese Diaspora (Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2010).
  • Haun Saussy, “Death and Translation,” Representations 94 (2006).

Session 6: Code

  • Hsia Yü 夏宇, from Pink Noise 粉紅色噪音, in Full Tilt 5 (2008), http://fulltilt.ncu.edu.tw/Content.asp?I_No=33
  • Rita Raley, “Machine Translation and Global English,” The Yale Journal of Criticism 16.2 (2003).
  • Emily Apter, “Everything Is Translatable” (chapter 15), The Translation Zone: A New Comparative Literature (Princeton UP, 2006).
  • Alan Liu, from “Transcendental Data: Toward a Cultural History and Aesthetics of the New Encoded Discourse,” Local Transcendence: Essays on Postmodern Historicism and the Database (Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2008).

Session 7: Funglible

  • Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries, selected online viewing from http://www.yhchang.com
  • Stephen Owen, “What Is World Poetry? The Anxiety of Global Influence,” The New Republic, 19 November 1990.
  • Rebecca Walkowitz, “Close Reading in an Age of Global Writing,” Modern Language Quarterly 74.2 (June 2013).
  • Brian Reed, Nobody's Business: Twenty-First Century Avant-Garde Poetics (Ithaca: Cornell UP, 2013) (subsections “You Are Not Unfunky” and “Humane Resources”).

Session 8: Wave

  • John Cayley and Yang Lian, Where the Sea Stands Still, http://programmatology.shadoof.net/works/wsss/index.html.
  • Franco Moretti, “Conjectures on World Literature,” New Left Review 1 (Jan.–Feb. 2000).
  • Lisa Gitelman, “New Media </Body>,” Media, History, and the Data of Culture (Cambridge: MIT, 2006).
  • Jacob Edmond, “Diffracted Waves and World Literature,” Parallax 20.2 (forthcoming July 2014).  


Beyond Justice, Svend Erik Larsen 

Gross iniquities beyond any human scale may be approached from the events themselves or from the perspective of the coping strategies they trigger in order to negotiate a shared sense of justice within a particular cultural context where the culturally differentiated discourses formed by law, religion and ethics reach a dead end together with their supporting ideas of identity and humanity. The power of language and human imagination is questioned beyond any locally defined sense of humanity and justice. But at the same time, the media generated globalized dissemination of atrocities removes them from their cultural context by constructing them as quasi-familiar phenomena wrapped in the universalist Europeanized discourse of human rights, turning Holocaust into the iconic ultimate crime against humanity and the South African reconciliation process of forgiveness into an equally iconic universal coping experiment. - With coping strategies as the point of the departure this seminar will explore a number of ways in which literature captures the challenges that the invention of such strategies represents to language, imagination and human identity when confronted with unforgivable wrong doing. Albeit cast in absolute terms, the unforgivable takes on different forms and interpretations in and across different cultures and historical periods. Hence, coping is regarded as culturally situated and embodied in a concrete human experience and yet charged with a perspective and an effect beyond particular local cultural formations. Euripides, the Bible, Yi Mun-Yol, Atiq Rahimi, Egil’s Saga, William Shakespeare, Ryan Malan, Isak Dinesen, Chinua Achebe and Paul Celan are selected as primary texts, together with reference texts on topics such as literary genres, emotions, memory, speech act, forgiveness, honor, retribution and supplemented with examples from painting (Anselm Kiefer) and music (Mozart).

Svend Erik LarsenSvend Erik Larsen is Professor of Comparative Literature at Aarhus University. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Academia Europaea and chair of its Section for Literary and Theatrical Studies, as well as a board member of the Danish National Research Foundation. Larsen’s books include Texts without Borders. Literature and Globalization (in Danish) (2007) and litteraturDK (in Danish) (2009). He has authored numerous articles on relevant issues for world literature: “World Literature or Literature Around the World?” (2008), “Euro-American Modernism as Local Refraction” (2011), “Literature as Global Thinking” (2011), “Memory Constructions and Their Limits” (2011), “Forgiveness as a Challenge to the Law” (2012), “After the Battle. Complexities of Emotional Post-War Reactions” (2012), ”From the National to a Transnational Paradigm. Writing Literary Histories Today” (2013), “Emotion and Forgiveness in Literature” (in print).

Session 1: Literature, Justice and Forgiveness

  • Isak Dinesen, “Kitosh’s Story.” Out of Africa and Shadows on the Grass.NY: Vintage 1985.
  • Simon Wiesenthal, The Sunflower. 2nd ed. NY: Schocken Books, 1998. First Book of Samuel, Chap. 15
  • Imre Kertész, “Who Owns Auschwitz?” Yale Journal of Criticism 2001: 14.1.
  • Njabulo Ndbele, “Memory, Metaphor, and the Triumph of Narrative”.Negotiating the Past: The Making of Memory in South Africa. 
  • Sarah Nuttall and Carlie Coetzee, eds. Cape Town: Oxford University Press.
  • Hannah Arendt, The Human Condition. 2nd ed. Chicago: U of Chicago Press, 1998.
  • J.L. Austin: How to do things with Words. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1962. 

Session 2: Confession, Emotion and Memory

  • From Ryan Malan, My Traitor’s Heart. London: Vintage, 1991.
  • From Susan VanZanen Gallagher, Truth and Reconciliation. The Confessional Mode in South African Literature. Portsmouth, NH: Heineman, 2002.
  • From Martha Nussbaum, Hiding from Humanity. Princeton: Princeton UP, 2004.
  • From Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments. Indianapolis: Liberty Classics, 1976.
  • From Peter Gray and Kendrick Oliver: The Memory of Catastrophe.Manchester: Manchester UP, 2004.
  • Lynn Hunt: Inventing Human Rights. NY: Norton, 2007.

Session 3: Before Forgiveness

  • From Euripides, Hippolytus, Loeb ed. by David Kovacs. Cambridge MA: Harvard UP, 1995.
  • From Philip Vellacott, Ironic Drama. A Study of Euripides’ Method and Meaning. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1975.
  • David Konstan, “Assuaging Rage”. Ancient Forgiveness. Charles Griswold & David Konstan, eds. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2012.
  • Gospels of St. Matthew, Ch. 12; St. Mark: Ch. 5; John Ch. 5.
  • Frederick W. Keene, “Structures of Forgiveness in the New Testament” (http://www.faithtrustinstitute.org/resources/articles/Structures-of-Forgiveness.pdf).

Session 4: Honor and Shame

  • FromNjal’sSaga, London: Penguin Classic, 2001.
  • From Atiq Rahimi, Earth and Ashes. London: Vintage, 2003.
  • From William Ian Miller, An Eye for an Eye. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2006.
  • Julian Pitt-Rivers, “Honor and Social Status.” Honour and Shame. The Values of Mediterranean Society. J.G. Peristiany, ed. Chicago: U of Chicago Press, 1974.
  • From David Pryce-Jones, The Closed Circle. An Interpretation of the Arabs. NY: Harper and Row, 1989.

Session 5: Changing Comedy and Tragedy

  • From William Shakespeare, King Lear. Arden 3, ed. by R. A. Foakes. London: Thomson Learning, 1997.
  • From William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice. Arden 3, ed. by John Drakakis. London: Bloomsbury, 2010.
  • Isak Dinesen, “Farah and the Merchant of Venice”. Out of Africa and Shadows on the Grass. NY: Vintage, 1985.
  • Søren Kierkegaard, “Ancient Tragedy’s Reflection in the Modern”. Either/Or. A Fragment of Life. London: Penguin Classic, 1992.
  • From Michael Billig, Laughter and the Ridicule. Towards a Social Critique of Humour. London: Sage, 2005.

Session 6: Outside Forgiveness

  • From Yi Mun-Yol, The Appointment With My Brother. Seoul: Jimoondang Publ., 1994.
  • From Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart, in the African Trilogy. NY: Alfred Knopf/Everyman’s Library, 2010.
  • From C. Fred Alford, Think No Evil. Korean Values in the Age of Globalization. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1999.
  • From Confucius, The Analects. London: Penguin Classics, 1979.
  • Richard C. Onwuanibe, “The Human Person and Immortality in Ibo (African) Metaphysics.” African Philosophy. An Introduction. 3rd ed. NY: U of America Press, 1984.

Session 7: Silence and the Limits of Language

  • Paul Celan, “Death Fugue” and “Once”. Selected Poems. Rev. ed. London: Penguin, 1995.
  • Ismat Chugthai, "The Quilt”. Lifting the Veil. London: Penguin, 2001.
  • Glenda Adams, “A Snake Down Under”. The Oxford Anthology of Australian Literature.Leonie Kramer & Adrian Mitchell. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1985.
  • From Jacques Derrida, On Cosmopolitanism and Forgiveness. London: Routledge, 2001.
  • J. M. Coetzee, “Into the Dark Chamber.” Doubling the Point. Essays and Interviews.Cambridge MA: Harvard UP, 1992. 
  • From Andrea Lauterbach, Anselm Kiefer Paul Celan. Myth, Mourning and Memory. London: Thames and Hudson, 2007.
  • 1-2 paintings by Kiefer
  • W.A. Mozart/Lorenzo da Ponte: The Marriage of Figaro (libretto and music)

Session 8: The Participants' Choice

In the first class 5-6 volunteering students from different cultural background are asked to suggest relevant texts from their own literatures within the seminar theme. They will be circulated to the group at beginning of the second week. Using texts and discussions from the seminar other volunteering students, two for each text, are invited to suggest interpretations which then are commented upon by the students who made the selection and discussed in the entire group. 


World Literature and Environmental Crises, Karen Thornber

Environmental degradation occurs everywhere on the planet, with a temporal and geographic scope unsurpassed by any other pressing global concern; environmental crises more than any other phenomena impel us to consider our lives and responsibilities in planetary terms. Since its beginnings, literature – and world literature in particular – has mediated interactions between people and nature. Yet even though the fields of world literature and environmental criticism (ecocriticism) both have burgeoned in recent years, few scholars have bridged the two. Accompanied by key readings of ecocritical theory, this seminar engages with world literature from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Oceania that is environmentally cosmopolitan (reaching out to the broader world by taking up ecodegradation beyond a single time or place, whether explicitly or implicitly). In so doing, we explore the possibilities not only of incorporating environmental consciousness into the study of world literature, and into the field of comparative literature more generally, but also for creating a more globally informed ecocriticism.

Karen ThomberKaren Thornber is Professor and Chair of Comparative Literature,Harvard University; she is also Chair of Harvard’s Regional StudiesEast Asia program and holds an additional appointment in Harvard’s Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations.  Thornber’s research and teaching focus on world literature, East Asian literatures, the literatures of the Indian Ocean Rim, postcolonialism, diaspora, environmental humanities, and medical humanities. A 2006 Harvard Ph.D., her books include Empire of Texts in Motion: Chinese, Korean, and Taiwanese Transculturations of Japanese Literature (Harvard, 2009) and Ecoambiguity: Environmental Crises and East Asian Literatures (Michigan, 2012), both of which were awarded multiple international prizes.  She is the author of over 50 articles/chapters as well as of an award-winning translation of Japanese poetry; Thornber is additionally guest editor of a special issue of the journal Literature and Medicine on world literature and health. Working in over a dozen languages (6 European and 8 Asian), Thornber is currently writing two books: the first is titled Global World Literature and Health and the second is titled Networking Literatures.

Session 1: Beginnings

  • Lawrence Buell, Ursula Heise, and Karen Thornber, “Literature and Environment”
  • The Epic of Gilgamesh, “The Forest Journey”
  • Louise Westling, The Green Breast of the New World 
  • “Mowing Grasses,” in Stephen Owen, An Anthology of Chinese Literature
  • “Mount Kagu”, in Edwin Cranston, A Waka Anthology
  • Karen Thornber, from Ecoambiguity: East Asian Literatures and Environmental Crises 

Session 2: Toxic Discourse

  • Lawrence Buell, “Toxic Discourse”
  • Rachel Carson, from Silent Spring: "Fable of Tomorrow"
  • Ch’oe Sungho, “Industrial Complex”
  • Ch’oe Sungja, “Went to the Sea in Winter”

Session 4: National Traumas

  • Judith Shapiro, from Mao’s War against Nature: Politics and the Environment in Revolutionary China
  • A Cheng,“The King of Trees"

Session 5: Global Risks

  • Ursula Heise, “Afterglow: Chernobyl and the Everyday”
  • Christa Wolf, Accident: A Day’s News
  • Sakaki Nanao, “Anyday”

Session 6: Postcolonial Ecocriticism, Ecocritical Postcolonialism

  • Mahasweta Devi, “Dhowli”
  • Jennifer Wenzel, "Forest Fictions and Ecological Crises: Reading the Politics of Survival in Mahasweta Devi’s ‘Dhowli’"
  • Rob Nixon, “Environmentalism and Postcolonialism”

Session 7: Anthropocentric Ecologies and the “Ecological Native”

  • Jared Diamond, from Collapse
  • Linda Hogan, from People of the Whale
  • Zakes Mda, from Heart of Redness
  • Topas Tamapima, “The Last Hunter”

Session 8: Literary and Environmental Futures

  • Lawrence Buell, “Environmental Criticism’s Future”
  • Ursula Heise, “Deterritorialization and Eco-Cosmopolitanism”
  • Karen Thornber, "Environments, Environmental Ambiguities, and Literatures"
  • Sakaki Nanao, “In the Twenty-First Century”
  • Ch’oe Sungho, “The Eyes of the Shrimp”


From Comparison to World Literature: Readings and Conceptual Issues, Zhang Longxi

In his conversation with J. P. Eckermann, Goethe spoke of the advent of “the epoch of world literature” in talking about his reading experience of a Chinese novel in translation, and the idea of Weltliteratur since Goethe has always implied the transcendence of European or any other national or regional tradition of literature and culture, and also the importance of literary translation. Theoretically speaking, the tension between two opposite forces has always resided in Weltliteratur as a concept, which stands poised between the local and the global, national specificities and cosmopolitan claims to literary universality. While going beyond national literary traditions, comparative literature has national literature as its basis and has been largely limited to comparisons within the European tradition. In contrast, world literature today definitely transcends Eurocentrism and takes into consideration the contribution of literary translation and its efficacy. At the same time, there are still conceptual issues that need to be fully explored before we may acquire a truly global or planetary perspective, beyond the ethnocentric or nationalistic tendencies almost inherent in all literary traditions, in the study of world literature. This seminar will discuss such conceptual and methodological issues in relation to readings of literary texts from different parts of the world in translation, and explore these issues informed by the consciousness of our own historicity, our understanding of national, comparative, and world literature and literary theories, and our sense of the relevance of world literature to our own time.

Zhang LongxiZhang Longxi is Chair Professor of Comparative Literature and Translation at the City University of Hong Kong. He is a member of theExecutive Council of the International Comparative Literature Association, an elected foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History and Antiquities and of the Academia Europaea. He has published widely in both English and Chinese, and his English book publications include The Tao and the Logos: Literary Hermeneutics, East and West (Duke, 1992), Mighty Opposites: From Dichotomies to Differences in the Comparative Study of China (Stanford, 1998), Allegoresis: Reading Canonical Literature East and West (Cornell, 2005),Unexpected Affinities: Reading across Cultures (Toronto, 2007), and From Comparison to World Literature (SUNY, forthcoming 2014).

Session 1: The Cosmopolitan Vision of Goethe’s Weltliteratur

  • Johann Peter Eckermann, Selection of Conversations of Goethe with Eckermann and Soret
  • David Damrosch, “Goethe Coins a Phrase,” from What Is World Literature? (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003).
  • Fred Dallmayr, “West-Eastern Divan: Goethe and Hafiz in Dialogue,” from Dialogue Among Civilizations: Some Exemplary Voices (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2002).

Session 2:National and Comparative Literature

  • Harish Trivedi, “The Nation and the World: An Introduction,” in Harish et al (eds.), The Nation across the World: Postcolonial Literary Representations (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2007).
  • Claudio Guillén, “Weltliteratur,” from The Challenge of Comparative Literature, trans. Cola Franzen (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press 1993).
  • Zhang Longxi, “Crossroads, Distant Killing, and Translation: On the Ethics and Politics of Comparison,” in Rita Felski and Susan Stanford Friedman (eds.) Comparison: Theories, Approaches, Uses (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013).

Session 3: Debating World Literature 1

  • Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, from The Communist Manifesto, ed. David McLellan (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992).
  • Aijid Ahmad, “The Communist Manifesto and ‘World Literature’,” Social Scientist 29:7-8 (Jul. – Aug. 2000).
  • Mads Rosendahl Thomsen, from Mapping World Literature: International Canonization and Transnational Literatures(London: Continuum, 2008).
  • Frank Moretti, “Conjectures on World Literature,” New Left Review 1 (Jan.- Feb. 2000).

Session 4: Debating World Literature 2

  • Pascale Casanova, “Literature as a World,” New Left Review 31 (Jan.-Feb. 2005).
  • Alexander Beecroft, “World Literature without a Hyphen: Towards a Typology of Literary Systems,” New Left Review 54 (Nov.-Dec. 2008).
  • Aamir Mufti, “Orientalism and the Institution of World Literatures,” Critical Inquiry 36:3 (Spring 2010).

Session 5: Dreams, Interpretations, and World Literature

  • Shakespeare, from The Merchant of Venice, Act II, scene 1, scene VII, scene IX; Act III, scene II.
  • Sigmund Freud, “The Theme of the Three Caskets,” in Collected Paper, 5 vols. (New York: Basic Books, 1959).
  • Qian Zhongshu, “God’s Dream,” from Humans,Beasts, and Ghosts, Stories and Essays, ed. Christopher G. Rea (New York: Columbia University Press, 2011).

Session 6: Utopia in World Literature

  • Krishan Kumar, from Utopia and Anti-Utopia in Modern Times (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1987).
  • Aziz Al-Azmeh, “Rhetoric for the Senses: A Consideration of Muslim Paradise Narratives,” in The Times of History: Universal Topics in Islamic Historiography (Budapest: Central European University Press, 2007).
  • Zhang Longxi, from Allegoresis: Reading Canonical Literature East and West (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2005).

Session 7: The Challenge of Translation

  • David Young (trans.), Five Tang Poets: Wang Wei, Li Po, Tu Fu, Li Ho, Li Shang-yin (Oberlin, Ohio: Oberlin College Press, 1990).
  • A. C. Graham (trans.), Poems of the Late T’ang(Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1965).

Session 8: Discussion and Tentative Conclusions

This will be a general discussion session for participants to take advantage of their different backgrounds and experiences to raise questions and issues of their own interest concerning world literature and literary studies in general, and try to come to some conclusions not just of the seminar itself, but of our understanding of world literature and how best to move forward for its further development in our learning, teaching, and research.