Comparative Literature at Brown

Comparative literature is the study of literature and other cultural expressions across linguistic and cultural boundaries. At Brown, the Department of Comparative Literature is distinct in its conviction that literary research and instruction must be international in character, and its undergraduate and graduate programs are considered among the finest in the country. Undergraduate students study a generous range of literary works – from Western cultures, both ancient and modern, to Chinese, Japanese, and Arabic – to develop a focused critical understanding of how cultures differ from one another.

The graduate program is a vigorous and comprehensive study of literature and culture, utilizing a range of materials from several literatures to foster an understanding of individual authors, influences, literary movements, forms, and genres in a comparative critical context. The program is flexible enough to accommodate a wide range of individual emphases in literature and culture, periods, genres, history, criticism, and theory.

  • For information about applying to our doctoral program, please see here.
  • To what careers can a concentration in Comparative Literature lead? Check out our Career Forum.
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NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS

SPRING 2020 Courses

FALL 2019 Courses

Center of ExcellenceTheatre Without Borders
September 27, 2019
The French Embassy announced its 2019 award to the Center of Excellence Théâtre sans frontières, a project led by Karen Newman (Comparative Literature and English).

Michelle Clayton wins John Rowe Workman Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Humanities -- September 2019 

Elias Muhanna wins the 2018 Morris D. Forkosch Prize
August 15, 2019
The Journal of the History of Ideas has selected The World in a Book: Al-Nuwayri and the Islamic Encyclopedic Tradition (Princeton University Press) as "the best book in intellectual history" for 2018.

Felix Green and Tavid Mulder join the faculty as Visiting Assistant Professors of Comparative Literature
August 15, 2019
Felix Green and Tavid Mulder completed the requirements for the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at Brown and will offer courses in AY19-20 as visiting faculty members.

Qussay Al-Attabi appointed Affiliated Scholar in Middle East Studies (2019-20)
August 15, 2019
Professor Al-Attabi received his PhD from Comparative Literature at Brown and we welcome him back this year while he is on leave from his position at Kenyon College.

Marc Redfield's book translated into Hungarian
June 11, 2019
Marc Redfield's book, The Rhetoric of Terror: Reflections on 9/11 and the War on Terror (Fordham 2009), has been translated into Hungarian. He was invited to Szeged and Budapest this summer to particpate in related academic events.  

We're moving!
We bid a fond farewell to Marston Hall. After June 1, 2019, you can find the Department of Comparative Literature in Prospect House, 36 Prospect Street.