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Courses in LSA Comparative Literature
Comparative Literature is a discipline that examines literature across national, historical, and linguistic boundaries. Literary movements, periods, genres, criticism, and theory are studied from an international viewpoint as are the relationships between literature and the other arts (e.g., film, painting, music) and literature and such disciplines as psychology, philosophy, anthropology, history, and women’s studies.

The Department of Comparative Literature offers a wide range of courses at all levels of the curriculum. Our classes are open to students from other departments in LSA, and from other units across the university.

If you are in your first year and you think you might want to pursue a degree in Comparative Literature, we recommend that you take one of our introductory courses at the 100 or 200 level. For example you may take a section of COMPLIT 122 (Writing World Literatures) to fulfill the LSA First Year Writing Requirement. Or you may choose COMPLIT 140 (First Year Literary Seminar) which is especially designed to give first year students the experience of a seminar taught by a faculty member. For general lecture courses at the 200 level, we highly recommend COMPLIT 222 (Great Books in World Literatures) or COMPLIT 240 (Introduction to Comparative Literature).

If you are entering your second or third year and are making progress in your foreign language(s), you may start taking courses at the 200 level and beyond. COMPLIT 322 (Translating World Literatures) satisfies the LSA Upper Level Writing Requirement, and allows you to develop a translation project.

In addition, the Department of Comparative Literature offers courses at the 300 and 400 level, with more specialized topics that vary each semester. Some of our courses can be counted toward the “Comparative Culture & Identity” track in International Studies.

Comparative Literature (COMPLIT)
COMPLIT 100. Global X
(3 - 4; 2 - 3 in the half-term). (HU). May be elected twice for credit.

This course explores elements of contemporary US American popular culture within a global framework. Richly contextualized, "Sports Culture," "Apocalypse," "Fairy Tales," or "Vampires" emerge in their complex historical and transnational dimensions. Through a careful selection of guest lectures, "Global X" serves as an introduction to Comparative Literature.

COMPLIT 122. Writing World Literatures
(4). (FYWR). May not be repeated for credit.

An intensive writing course designed to increase cultural literacy and to fulfill the first-year writing requirement. It will focus on multiple translations of works, asking students to consider how these translation reflect different cultural times and milieu as well as choices in language. Students will also work intensely with issues of composition, argument, and source material related to the creative texts.

COMPLIT 140. First-Year Literary Seminar
Enrollment restricted to first-year students, including those with sophomore standing. (3). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

A course in the LSA First-Year Seminar Program. Led by a faculty member, COMPLIT 140 is a study of selected topics in literature through classroom discussion and the writing of essays.

COMPLIT 141. Great Performances
(4). (HU). (FYWR). May not be repeated for credit.

What makes a "great" performance? This course considers the relation between tradition and innovation in performing "great" works in music, theatre, dance. Students attend live performances and explore the concept of performance from various historical, critical and creative perspectives; they also develop their skills in writing about performance.

COMPLIT 200. Translation Across Disciplines
(3). May not be repeated for credit.

This course introduces translation as a movement across languages, media, cultures, discourses, and disciplines. We will explore the following questions: Why and how should we think about translation? What is translation? Who translates? When and where do we encounter translation in our daily lives, in our communities, and in the world at large?

COMPLIT 222 / GTBOOKS 212. Great Books in World Literatures
(3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course studies great books of world literatures across temporal, generic, and geographic boundaries. The goals are to appreciate the complexity of the texts themselves and their intimate relationship with the cultures that produced them. The course encourages critical thinking about the concept of "world literature" and its relevance to texts we study.

COMPLIT 240. Literature Across Borders
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. This course may be counted toward the International Studies subplan in Comparative Culture and Identity. F.

Emphasizing international and interdisciplinary approaches to literary studies, this course introduces students to current topics in comparative literature. Readings come from Western and non-Western cultures and are considered within a variety of contexts.

COMPLIT 241. Topics in Comparative Literature
COMPLIT 240. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. W.

COMPLIT 260. Europe and Its Others
(3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course is designed to introduce students to the pan-European origins of literary study and alternatives to them, and to increase their cultural fluency.

COMPLIT 322. Translating World Literatures
(3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course provides an opportunity for students to use their skills in a foreign language to think about the history, theory, and practice of translating literary texts. To meet the Upper Level Writing Requirement, the course is structured around a series of critical and creative writing assignments that encourage students to reflect on the process of translation, in their own work and in a selection of translated works. The course also includes a range of readings in translation studies, with an emphasis on the cultural function of translation and the role of the translator in cross-cultural communication. Students will integrate theoretical concepts about translation with the textual practice of translating.

COMPLIT 340 / GREEKMOD 340. Travels to Greece
(3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

The course examines the literature of modern travel to Greece and the issues it raises about antiquity, modernity, ethnography, otherness, exoticism, orientalism, and Western identity. Readings include works by British, French, German, American, and Greek authors. Art, film, and the media are also used to provide different measures of comparison.

COMPLIT 350. The Text and Its Cultural Context
(3). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

A comparative study of literature and some expository writing about diverse cultures, focusing on the interdependence of text and context.

COMPLIT 364. Comparative Literary Movements and Periods
(3). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits. May be elected more than once in the same term.

This topics course proves an introduction to studies in literary movements and periods across national boundaries. Examples include the traditional literary periods such as Romanticism or Modernism as well as movements such as surrealism, dada, or futurism, to name only a few. In each case, a basic understanding of the issues concerning literary movement or period would supplement the close examination of literary works.

COMPLIT 372. Literature and Identity
(3). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits. May be elected more than once in the same term.

This course explores the emergence of literary works in relation to identity, tracing how literary and human kinds relate and how this relation changes. Important issues might include how specific cultural contexts affect the making and reading of literary works, how attempts to preserve ethnic heritage and memories play out through literature, and how migration and globalization influence literary creation and meaning.

COMPLIT 374. Literature and the Body
(3 - 4). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

This course interrogates the corporeal context of literary creation and meaning. It focuses not only on the influence of gender, sex, ability, disability, and race within the world of the text but questions the relation between literary and bodily form. Is the body a text, or is it an origin for texts? Do we write out of the body or is the body itself written? How do the body of the text and the text of the body interact to create meaning?

COMPLIT 376. Literature and Ideas
(3). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits. May be elected more than once in the same term.

This course offers a general consideration of the ways in which particular ideas have affected the creation and history of literature, whether considered in terms of the history of ideas or as the content of an individual work. Its subject matter is varied, depending on the instructor. It might address the influence of "freedom" in a selection of literary works. It might track the influence of the French Revolution. It might invent other new and useful keys to literary interpretation.

COMPLIT 382. Literature and the Other Arts
(3). (HU). May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits. May be elected more than once in the same term.

This course introduces students to the interdisciplinary study of literature and the arts. It poses general questions about the concerns shared by different media (language, paint, music, etc.) as well as arguments between them. It introduces students to basic ideas about aesthetics broadly conceived and permits an exploration of art issues in an inclusive climate where language, music, and the representational arts may come together.

COMPLIT 434. Comparative Studies in Poetry
Junior standing. (3). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

COMPLIT 438. Comparative Studies in Film
Junior standing. (3). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

COMPLIT 490. Comparative Cultural Studies
Junior standing. (3). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

An advanced intro to comparative studies in culture and cultural theory. Approaches will vary but might include questions of social identity, formations of social discourse, postcolonialism, issues of cultural racism and status of "national" identity.

COMPLIT 492. Comparative Literary Theory
Junior standing. (3). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

An advanced intro to comparative studies in literary theory. Topics might include narrative theory, gender theory, ideology, semiology, and postmodernism.

COMPLIT 495. Senior Seminar in Comparative Literature
Comparative Literature majors with senior standing. (3). May not be repeated for credit. F.

COMPLIT 496. Honors Thesis
Consent of instructor required. COMPLIT 495 and Honors concentration in Comparative Literature. (3). (INDEPENDENT). May not be repeated for credit. Continuing Course. Y grade can be reported at end of the first-term to indicate work in progress. At the end of the second term, the final grade is posted for both term's elections. F, W, Sp, Su.

COMPLIT 498. Directed Reading
Consent of instructor required. (1 - 4). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits. May be elected more than once in the same term. F, W, Sp/Su, Sp, Su.

This course is individually developed by a student in consultation with an instructor who may be any Associate Faculty member of the Program.

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