Literature in a globalised world
In this programme we approach literature as a cultural medium from a comparative, theoretical perspective. How do different cultures and societies think about the present, remember the past, and imagine the future in and through literature? And how has literature itself been understood and theorised across historical periods and geographical boundaries?
In this programme you will have the opportunity to explore these and related questions. At Utrecht we focus on modern and contemporary literature from different language areas. What sets the Utrecht programme apart is a strong focus on literary and cultural history and memory, literary theory and criticism, and world literature.
As a student in this programme you will learn to analyse the ways in which literature interacts with (and reflects on) its cultural and social environment against the background of globalisation and new media technologies.
A comparative approach
The ‘comparative’ approach characteristic for Utrecht is understood to involve comparison between literary phenomena along four principal axes:
- Transculturality (how does literature reflect and negotiate cultural differences and operate across national borders?)
- Mediality (how does literature work as a medium and how does it interact with other media? how are literary phenomena adapted to other media? )
- Memory (how do stories and cultural forms survive across generations and how are they transformed across time?)
- Discursivity (how does literature function as a m ode of knowledge production and how does it relate to other forms of knowledge, both scientific and creative?)
Read more about our teaching and research environment, including our teaching staff.
Comparative Literary Studies prepares you for a range of different careers, both academic and non-academic, that require advanced research skills along with expertise in the fields of literary and cultural analysis. The programme features a strong research ethics and methods component. Students are trained to design and carry out their own original research project, to gather and evaluate sources, and to communicate their ideas and findings in a professional manner and a variety of formats. Students also receive training in academic writing, editing, presenting and discussion leading, as well as digital methods. Read more about career development and possible career prospects.
Comparative Literary Studies is a selective Master’s programme. Do you want to know if you are eligible for this Master? Check the entry requirements.