Comparative Literature is a concentration within the Interdisciplinary
Studies Program in which students investigate a subject from the viewpoints
of several disciplines. In taking an interdisciplinary
approach, students acquire the knowledge and the skills characteristic
of the liberally educated person while enjoying flexibility and an
individualized approach to their education.
Comparative Literature combines the study of languages and literature. Students
acquire reading skills in two or more languages, compare the structures
of languages, explore the relationship between literature and the
language in which it is written, and study literary themes and genres
in the context of several cultures.
In addition to the requirements of the School of Arts and Sciences,
majors must complete 36 credits with a substantial concentration in
one of the following areas:
- Modern Foreign Languages
Students also acquire proficiency
in two foreign languages, one of which may be in the focal department. If
the focal department is English, the student must take literature
courses in one foreign language and advance to at least the intermediate
level in the second.
The general model for a major in Interdisciplinary Studies must
be varied slightly to accommodate students interested in Comparative
Literature, since the requirements for the major are levels of competence. It
is not possible to stipulate the number of credits that will be
needed to achieve the required competence.
Students are required to take one methodology course, Introduction
to Literary Theory: Criticism and Research, as well as two seminars
and/or independent studies and to do a senior project of an interdisciplinary
nature in an area of Comparative Literature.