About Us

Standing at the forefront of innovative work in literary, theoretical, and cultural studies, UCLA’s Comparative Literature program is one of the most exciting fields in the humanities. As a discipline it requires exceptional linguistic ability, theoretical knowledge, and high intellectual caliber. UCLA’s program offers students the opportunity to work with faculty members in any of the University’s language and literature departments as well as with a diverse Comparative Literature Department faculty.

Both interdisciplinary and multilingual, the Comparative Literature Department is committed to continuing its pioneering work in defining literary paradigms and fostering new directions for exploration in literary studies, including areas such as:

  • The relationship between translation and transnationalism
  • Literary theory and emerging media
  • The future of national literatures in an era of globalization
  • Gender and sexuality studies
  • East-West cultural encounters
  • Human rights and global censorship
  • Postcolonial and diaspora studies
  • Experimental approaches to literature and culture

Focusing first and foremost on those literary elements that preoccupy literary studies in general, such as genre, period, theme, language, and theory, Comparative Literature also extends its range to questions that concern other disciplines such as:

  • Anthropology
  • Art history
  • Film and media studies
  • Gender studies
  • History
  • Philosophy

Courses are designed to provide students with both a historical and theoretical understanding of literary and cultural forms, themes, and movements. Given its focus on interdisciplinary research and pedagogy, Comparative Literature is the natural site around which to organize modern language and literary studies.