Entanglements: Envisioning World Literature from the Global South

20. January 2016 to 21. January 2016
Campus Westend, Cas. 823 (Festsaal)

In recent years, “World Literature” has become a hotspot of international academic debate. At the centre of the manifold and diverse attempts to turn the concept into a viable framework for engaging with literature in the 21st century world lies a widely shared urge to overcome the Eurocentric limitations that so long bedevilled literary studies in general and the institutional practices of comparative literature in particular. It is in this context that the idea of a “Global South” has re-emerged as a powerful point of attraction in global literary debates. Like many variants of postcolonialism, the idea of a “Global South” has often relied on a victimological perspective: what defines societies, cultures and literatures in Africa, Asia and Latin America, it is habitually assumed, is a common history of colonial oppression and anticolonial resistance. Half a century after the end of colonial rule in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean, however, this perspective increasingly clashes with the new realities of a globalized world and arguably needs to be redefined to allow for a fruitful encounter with the complexity of contemporary cultures and literatures.

The International Symposium „Envisioning World Literature from the Global South“ will scrutinize current debates that attempt to bring historical and contemporary South-South entanglements to the fore and to develop a new understanding of world literature in a multipolar world of globalized modernity. The organizers invite participants to critically engage with models of world literature (e.g. Franco Moretti, Pascale Casanova, David Damrosch, or the Warwick Research Collective); to discuss to what extent these models manage to move beyond the Eurocentric confines that so long dominated literary studies; to highlight the “lateral” relations between literatures in “non-Western” locations; and to explore both “North/South” and “South/South” literary relations in terms of a widening global communicative network.

If you like to participate, we kindly ask you to register via mail due to organisational reasons . Please write a mail to Anne Loeber (loeber@em.uni-frankfurt.de).

World Literature Symposium-Info and Programme_14.1.2016.pdf

Symposium Poster_final - Kopie.pdf