Resources for Students Interested in the Study of Comparative Literature

Our major supports students who want to engage in literatures that cross boundaries of media, geography, time and nationality, but also of languages and cultures. The study of Comparative Literature requires the development of critical skills for the analysis of literary and cultural texts and acknowledges the reality of living in an interconnected and global world in which the acquisition of knowledge in a second language and culture is a key element. Literary theory is one of the tools that students of Comparative Literature use as they develop their skills in the close reading and critique of literary and cultural objects.

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Literary Theory (ed. John Frow) offers 180 full-length essays that:

“Discuss the theoretical categories and formal structures; the institutions that support the production, dissemination, interpretation, and valuation of literary texts; the identities of the real and textual persons who interact in the study of texts; and the systematic methodologies of literary interpretation and understanding. Ranging from ancient criticism--Greek and Latin, Chinese, Sanskrit, Arabic, and Biblical--to contemporary issues, including digital humanities, ecocriticism, queer studies, and Indigenous traditions, the Encyclopedia offers the most comprehensive analysis currently available of literary theory in all its many dimensions.”

This excellent resource is available online and on the Reference shelves at Canaday library:

Bryn Mawr’s Comparative Literature co-Director Shiamin Kwa is the author of the chapter on “Surface” in the Encyclopedia.


Contact Us

Comparative Literature

Old Library 103
Bryn Mawr College
101 N. Merion Avenue
Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania 19010-2899
Phone: 610-526-5198
Fax: 610-526-7479

Shiamin Kwa
Co-Chair and Associate Professor of East Asian Languages and Cultures and Co-Director of Comparative Literature
Phone: 610-526-5671

Maud McInerney, Co-Director and Major Advisor
The Laurie Ann Levin Professor of Comparative Literature and Professor of English
Woodside Cottage 203, Haverford College
Phone: 610-896-1156

Leslie Diarra, Academic Administrative Assistant
Phone 610-526-5198