Table of Contents
- What is comparative literature?
- Comparative literature vs. English
- Why study comparative literature?
- Things to know when studying Comparative Literature:
- Foreign universities offering this course
- Career prospects
- Key Takeaway
What is comparative literature?
Comparative literature is a study of connections between different cultural traditions and ideas. Literature refers to fiction, drama, poetry, and culture more broadly. Therefore, to put it simply, this discipline is a study of literature, film, and culture beyond the national or linguistic borders.
Comparative literature vs. English
It may seem that both comparative literature and English are similar academic branches, but there is a significant difference between the two, and you must know it. The former is the study of world literature. It goes beyond culture and boundaries, whereas the latter, is the study of literature confined to a few nations and doesn’t explore beyond that.
Why study comparative literature?
The world is interconnected, and by studying this subject, we seek to understand cultures on their terms, find commonalities, and respect differences.
Here are the reasons why you might be interested in taking this subject-
1. Incredible variety of texts
All in all, it gives us an overview of different countries, cultures and teaches us about periods. Moreover, it allows you to be introduced to various writers that may not be mentioned in the General English stream. You can also study the work from England, Europe, Russia, Egypt, South Africa, and more. Additionally, you read novels from China, India, and Pakistan. And that’s how you have diverse knowledge.
2. Working in another language
While studying this course, you can learn a new language or improve on the one you already know. If you speak another language, you can study and write about texts in the original. However, you must know that translations are always available.
3. Challenges your perspective
Comparative literature challenges your perspective. It makes you question the after-effects of economic systems, the range of theories, and the approaches you will learn, allowing you to nurture a vastly different perspective on everything you read and see.
4. The engaging staff
The comparative literature department has an excellent teaching staff in most colleges and universities. Some of the world-class academics are taken on board to give lectures and hold seminars, as well as provide knowledge and expertise in their field. So, if you think that English might not be quite your thing, it might be time to think about comparative literature.
5. Gain transferable skills
The skills you will learn while pursuing this degree can be applied to various other career choices. It opens up a lot of other possibilities for you.
Things to know when studying Comparative Literature:
- You must complete your class 12 exams in any stream.
- You shall get admission in UG and PG courses in comparative literature based on your score in the last exam.
- At least 50% aggregate is required to pursue a bachelor’s degree (BA) in comparative literature.
- Pursue a postgraduate degree (MA) in comparative literature.
- You can also apply for higher degree courses in this discipline, like MPhil or Ph.D. for which you must have at least 50% marks in your master’s.
Foreign universities offering this course
- King’s College London, UK
- University of Essex, UK
- Queen Mary University of London, UK
- University of Westminster, UK
- The University of California, Berkeley, USA
- Yale University, USA
- Harvard University, USA
- Sorbonne University, France
You can get a job as a school teacher, lecturer, become a journalist or even be a teacher of English or a foreign language. Students who take comparative literature may have to study a regional or foreign language as part of the curriculum. Exposure to different writing styles and an ability to express themselves helps a student achieve a career in journalism, content writing, publishing, scriptwriting, branding, and public relations.
Employers seek out individuals who have excellent verbal and written communication skills, teamwork and interpersonal skills, initiative, and a strong work ethic. Students must connect with organizations, and campus employment offers valuable opportunities to add to the skills apart from what is taught in classes. Off-campus employment or volunteering in the community, a summer internship may be the best way to prepare yourself for comparative literature careers and develop marketable skills.
- Comparative literature is like the window to world literature. It has a global vision where diverse cultures, literature, and ideas help build relationships.
- Even though people for a long time ignored it; and did not quite understand its scope, in recent times more and more students are opting for this course.
- Studying the various factors that affected the past, helps us gain a deeper understanding of the problems we face in the present.
We hope you enjoyed reading this blog. In case of any queries or assistance, drop a comment below or reach out to us!
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Q1. Are online comparative literature degree programs available?
Answer- There aren’t any fully online programs available for this course. However, you can take individual classes online. Some examples of course topics include east and west, romanticism, comedy, cinema, and psyche.
Q2. What makes a comparative literature essay good enough?
Answer- To write a good comparative literature essay, you must dedicate your time to understanding and thinking about the given question. You may also relate to the ideas and themes explored in your lectures and seminars. It is important to construct a solid argument. Additionally, always keep your central thesis in mind and ensure that the essay contributes to it. Nevertheless, void unnecessary digressions, follow structured writing, use the conclusion to recapitulate your main thesis, and demonstrate how it provides an answer to the question.
Q3. Do I have to know mathematics to study comparative literature?
Answer- No, it is not compulsory to have studied Mathematics. However, basic mathematical knowledge will help you keep records and track of periods associated with your subject.
Q4. Can I get comparative literature scholarships?
Answer- Yes, scholarships are available for comparative literature majors. However, you will have to check the college and University websites to know which scholarships you may be eligible for.