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Robert A. Rushing’s book, Descended from Hercules: Biopolitics and the Muscled Male Body On Screen, won the Film and Media Studies book prize at AAIS

Apr 25, 2017

Professor Robert A. Rushing’s book Descended from Hercules: Biopolitics and the Muscled Male Body On Screen just won the Film and Media Studies book prize at the AAIS (American Association for Italian Studies).

Eric Calderwood awarded Criticism and Interpretive Theory Junior Research Fellowship for 2017-18.

Apr 13, 2017

Eric Calderwood has been awarded a Criticism and Interpretive Theory Junior Research Fellowship for 2017-18.

Robert Rushing's New Book, Descended from Hercules: Biopolitics and the Muscled Male Body on Screen

Apr 10, 2017

Muscles, six-pack abs, skin, and sweat fill the screen in the tawdry and tantalizing peplum films associated with epic Italian cinema of the 1950s and 1960s.Using techniques like slow motion and stopped time, these films instill the hero’s vitality with timeless admiration and immerse the hero’s body in a world that is lavishly eroticized but without sexual desire. These "sword and sandal" films represent a century-long cinematic biopolitical intervention that offers the spectator an imagined form of the male body―one free of illness, degeneracy, and the burdens of poverty―that defends goodness with brute strength and perseverance, and serves as a model of ideal citizenry.

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Prof. Waïl Hassan Elected Second Vice President of ACLA

Apr 09, 2017

Prof. Waïl Hassan has been elected Second Vice President of the American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA). He will serve in that capacity for the first of a three-year term on the Executive Committee (2017-18). In the second year (2018-19) he will become Vice President, then President in the third year (2019-20). After that, Prof. Hassan will become a member of the Honorary Committee as a past president.

The ACLA was founded in 1960 and is the largest professional association representing the discipline in North America, although its membership of over 2,000 includes many who travel to its annual conference from Asia, Africa, Europe, and South America. The ACLA also holds occasional conferences abroad, with the 2017 meeting taking place in Utrecht, the Netherlands, in July. 

Alex van Doren awarded the Graduate Student Leadership Award

Apr 09, 2017


We're pleased to announce the winner of the Graduate Student Leadership Award: Alexandra Van Doren, a doctoral student in Comparative and World Literatures. 

During the Syrian refugee crisis of 2015, Alexandra realized there was no refugee welcome center in Champaign or Urbana, and decided to take action. In January 2016, she founded the non-profit Three Spinners Inc. with the help of fellow graduate student Meagan Smith and her husband Tim King.

Matthew Nelson was awarded the SLCL Dissertation completion fellowship for 2016-2017

Jul 26, 2016

Matthew Nelson was awarded the SLCL Dissertation completion fellowship for 2016-2017 for his dissertation, "Translingual Nostalgias in Modern Sanskrit and Indian Poetry in English" 

Ethan Madareita receives Honorable Mention for the 2016 IPRH Prizes for Research in the Humanities.

Jul 26, 2016

Ethan Madareita's essay, “Unbordering the Body: Raúl Zurita’s Utopian Performance Under Dictatorship,” received an Honorable Mention for best graduate student research for the 2016 IPRH Prizes for Research in the Humanities.

Hapsatou Wane has accepted a position at Armstrong University

Jul 26, 2016

Hapsatou Wane has accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature in the Department of Languages, Literature and Philosophy at Armstrong University.

Waïl Hassan named University Scholar

Jun 18, 2016

We are pleased to announce that Prof. Waïl Hassan has been named University Scholar for 2016-2017.

Rini Mehta honored at Women's Resources Center International Women's Day Celebration

Mar 09, 2016

The Women’s Resources Center within the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations selected Prof. Rini Mehta as a 2016 honoree at the International Women’s Day Celebration. Prof. Mehta was recognized for her "..invaluable work on behalf of women internationally." This year's honorees represent a wide-range of achievements within the fields of education, healthcare, policy, history, and social work.

Learn more at the Women's Resource Center

Waïl Hassan Awarded ACLS Fellowship

Feb 29, 2016

Prof. Waïl Hassan has been awarded the ACLS Fellowship for 2016-2017 for his project, "Arab Brazil: Literature, Culture, and Orientalism in the Racial Democracy.” 

Eric Calderwood Receives NEH Fellowship

Jan 23, 2016

Eric Calderwood is one of five University of Illinois faculty to be awarded an National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship. Eric's project is “The Memory of Al-Andalus and Spanish Colonialism in Morocco, 1859-1956.” This book will be the first study of Spanish colonialism in Morocco (1859-1956) to be based on both Spanish and Arabic sources. The book explores how Spanish and Moroccan writers used the history of al-Andalus – medieval Muslim Iberia – as a framework for understanding Spanish colonialism in Morocco, and how the historical memory of al-Andalus has been used to structure debates about Europe’s evolving relationship with the Muslim world.

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Robert Rushing named editor of New Directions in National Cinemas

Jan 22, 2016

Robert Rushing has taken on the editorship for Indiana University Press's New Directions in National Cinemas series. 

"New Directions in National Cinemasaims to publish manuscripts that take new and exciting approaches to the study of individual and comparative national cinemas. The series seeks to publish books that are interdisciplinary in nature but are strongly conversant in film theory and criticism."

Learn more about the series

Robert Tierney's new book, Monster of the Twentieth Century: Kotoku Shusui and Japan's First Anti-Imperialist Movement

Jan 16, 2016

This extended monograph examines the work of the radical journalist Kotoku Shusui and Japan’s anti-imperialist movement of the early twentieth century. It includes the first English translation ofImperialism (Teikokushugi), Kotoku’s classic 1901 work.


Rachel Harris's new book: An Ideological Death: Suicide in Israeli Literature

Jan 14, 2016

"An Ideological Death: Suicide in Israeli Literature examines literary challenges to Israel’s national narratives. The centrality of the army, the mythology of the "new Jew," the vision of the first Israeli city, Tel Aviv, and the very process by which a nation’s history is constructed are confronted in fiction by many prominent Israeli writers."


Eric Calderwood's article in Foreign Policy

Apr 10, 2015

Eric Calderwood wrote a piece for Foreign Policy entitled "The Reconquista of the Mosque of Córdoba."

"Spain’s most famous mosque is at the center of a dispute between activists seeking to preserve its Muslim heritage, and the Catholic Church, which has claimed it as its own. The result could determine the future of Islam in Europe."

Read the full article