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Comparative & World Literature

Founded in 1967, the Program in Comparative and World Literature at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign has been at the forefront of interdisciplinary teaching and research in the humanities, offering courses that work across different national languages and literary traditions, as well as those that combine the study of literature with other disciplines, including film and visual culture, science and medicine, economics and law. Our program was one of the first to offer and emphasize non-Western and cross-cultural perspectives, and World Literature – from Asia and Africa, to Europe and the Americas – is an area where we continue to excel today.

***SPECIAL INFORMATION FOR UNDERGRADUATES, SPRING 2021 & COVID-19: We know that students are looking for opportunities this semester for a rich and immersive learning environment; more personal interactions with faculty and advisors; support for learning and for study; and more. We would like to use this occasion to tout the value of having small and personalized programs like Comparative Literature in a large and diverse college like LAS, and to point undergraduates interested in a better learning environment to small classes both for upper division students, as well as for students of all levels in any field (we have courses that take you from Bollywood to the Middle Ages); to in-person classes taught by faculty who have won major teaching awards; to the kind of personal mentoring and advising that only a smaller unit can provide; online courses taught by faculty who have taken the LAS seminar in online teaching. If you are looking for space to study or work during a pandemic that seems to always keep you confined to your dorm room, fear not! Check out this page kept by the registrar of classroom spaces that available as study spaces. 

Recent News

Poland Today
George Gasyna, Conrad Scholar

Prof. Gasyna has been named one of six Conrad Humanities Scholars in the College of LAS

Harriet Murav, CAS professor

Harriet Murav has been appointed as a Professor in the Center for Advanced Study starting Fall 2020, one of our highest honors.

Interview with Prof. Calderwood in Cordopolis

The Spanish newspaper Cordopolis published a long interview with Prof. Eric Calderwood about the...

Upcoming Events

The Newbery Medal's First Century

Nov 05, 2021
9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Writer-in-Residence: Dave Eggers (Dates TBD)

Feb 28, 2022 to Mar 04, 2022
12:00 am