Comparative Literature is about exploring connections — connections among various literary, visual, and cultural traditions in a global world; connections between past and present; and connections across different academic disciplines and modes of intellectual inquiry.

Comparative Literature trains students in the critical analysis of texts, seeking to understand how the rhetorical and aesthetic features of those texts—whether literary, visual, or theoretical—negotiate and shape social values, attitudes, and beliefs. International in scope and interdisciplinary in orientation, our field emphasizes intellectual breadth and fosters intellectual initiative by maximizing students’ opportunities to design their own courses of study.

Learn more about our department


James Tweedie selected as finalist for the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation New Directions Fellowship

Professor James Tweedie’s proposal was selected as a finalist for the 2015 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation New Directions Fellowships.  The New... Continue reading

"University of Washington professor Jennifer Bean,...knows more about silent films than Stephen Hawking knows about physics."

As part of a Special Report section on the Paramount Theater's Wurlitzer organ, Professor Jennifer M. Bean was recently... Continue reading

New faculty publication: Cinema Beyond Territory: Inflight Entertainment and Atmospheres of Globalization

Cinema Beyond Territory Inflight Entertainment and Atmospheres of Globalisation Stephen Groening Available... Continue reading


Jan 14
Christina Lupton (Warwick)
Histories & Futures of Reading: On immersing networks in time
4:00pm: Communications 202
Jan 29
Feb 26
Apr 20
Nicholas Paige (Berkeley)
Histories & Futures of Reading: On small data and the novel
4:00pm: Communications 202
May 14
Janice Radway (Northwestern)
Histories and Futures of Reading: On girl zine networks
3:30pm: HUB 145

Quick Facts

Students (Autumn 2011):
94 Undergraduate Majors
40 Graduate Students
1,992 Total Student Enrollment

Degrees Awarded (July 2010-June 2011):
53 Bachelor of Arts degrees
3 Master of Arts degrees
6 Ph.D. degrees

Department Fact Sheet (PDF)