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Prospective Students

What is Comparative Literature?

Comparative literature is a discipline of literary studies that explores exciting approaches to literature and culture in a global context. It also examines global media (print, visual, electronic) and engages with questions of ethics, human rights, and the real-world contexts of literary and cultural production. Comparative Literature will give you a deeper understanding of this planet and its people and open doors to new intellectual and cultural worlds. It will train you in important skills such as analytical writing, argumentation, and communication in an international context. The study of world literature, ethics and human rights, and global media—key areas in our program—give students in professional and technical areas the “soft skills” that allow them to stand out from other applicants when they enter the job market and to build long-lasting careers out of the first job.

Why Study Comparative Literature?

You might like this program if:

  • you are curious about other cultures beyond your own and want to learn to think critically and creatively about cultural difference and convergence in our interconnected world;
  • you want to acquire important skills such as analytical writing, argumentation, and communication in an international context; and/or
  • you are interested in acquiring knowledge of a second language and/or culture, which is a key component to success in the global economy.

Potential Careers

Comparative Literature will expand your professional and intellectual options, not only immediately after graduation, but for the rest of your life. A degree in Comparative Literature will aid you in finding employment in many fields.

  • Domestic and international business
  • Public relations
  • Publishing
  • Education
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Museum acquisitions
  • Law
  • Government services

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

The graduate program in Comparative Literature offers students small seminars on a diverse range of topics related to world literatures and cultures across the globe examined from a variety of theoretical approaches. We are committed to the intellectual development and professional success of all our students. We make sure they have opportunities to teach literature classes in their field(s) of study, and we work with them beginning in the second year to prepare them to write for publication. We also offer students the possibility of pursuing internships that prepare them for careers in and beyond academia. Our alumni also pursue graduate degrees in advanced literary studies, law, and library science.