Comparative Literature MA

Intercultural Readings COMPLIT4002

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Modern Languages and Cultures
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

When we ask comparative questions we are concerned to understand the differences and similarities of our respective positions. Our languages, our use of translation, our ideology, our view of the world make a difference, especially in comparative literature, so if we understand literary texts as created in different cultural contexts to our own, then our interpretation and critical analysis of the texts must consider these differences.


2x1hr seminar per week, Tuesday at 1pm and Friday at 11am over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.

Excluded Courses





Commentary (1000 words) - 30%

Essay (3000 words) - 70%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ engage students in a critical, interdisciplinary exchange with the comparative cultures of text, through the material conditions of their authors' writing and the conditions of our reading;

■ explore the theoretical and practical possibilities that such an approach to literature and culture may afford, using various examples of intercultural texts - poetry, prose, intellectual biographies, film etc.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

■ articulate their own cultural position vis a vis different texts encountered during the course;

■ describe and evaluate the significance of languages and translation in the study of any text;

■ trace themes of 'difference' - the stranger, the guest, the foreign, the traveller - in texts encountered during the course;

■ articulate an understanding of the complex relationships between cultures (one's own and others).

■ analyse issues and problems involved in the process of intercultural reading, and write about them critically, presenting arguments cogently and concisely within time-limited deadlines.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.