World Literatures

We live in an era of Globalization, with vast media conglomerates commanding huge audiences; so what is World Literature in such a context? We will consider the forces of cultural gravity that have bound a constellation of traditions together down the centuries, with special attention to the literatures of China, Africa,  the Caribbean, and Scotland.  What happens to texts when they move between cultures? What gets lost—and found—in translation? Sometimes cultures overlap and interact to create new forms only tangentially related to the parent stocks. In examining the global movement of literary texts, we will consider the classic patterns of cultural diffusion and appropriation of literary texts,  and scrutinize writing from the periphery and the possibility of long-term resistance to cultural hegemony in colonized cultures.