Comparative Literature and Literary Theory is a specialisation of the Leiden University Master’s programme in Media Studies. Comparative Literature and Literary Theory is devoted to the study of literature from a comparative and theoretical perspective. Offering a wide array of study options, the programme is not limited to the literatures of one specific language or culture, but covers world languages and cultures.
The main fields are explained in greater detail later on the programme page.
“For me, literary texts are not so much interesting as an expression or reaction of a culture or period, but as a production factor which constitutes culture or subjectivity.”
“In Leiden we have chosen explicitly for the most recent period, the 19th and 20th centuries, which we study in great depth. A further choice is that we study literature in relation to art and film, using subjects such as interculturality and intermediality.
A characteristic of this Leiden master’s is also that we organise two or three congresses and lectures every semester. The most recent of these were an international three-day congress on the Rhetoric of Sincerity and a mini congress on meaning in music and literature. These kinds of activities enable students to come into contact with recent academic visions.
I am particularly fascinated by the production of literary meaning, and the role that this plays in the formation of subjectivity and cultural memory. For me, literary texts are not so much interesting as an expression or reaction of a culture or period, but as a production factor which constitutes culture or subjectivity. Naturally, I have academic sources of inspiration in this approach to literature, but even more important is the role of literature or sculpture as a source of inspiration.
I do not believe that a literary text is an ‘object’ which necessarily has to be subjected to academic methods; it is more of a discussion partner. I sharpen my views through comparison with literature or sculpture.”