The graduate program in comparative literature enables students to pursue literary studies across national, linguistic, cultural, and disciplinary boundaries. Areas of study include genres, periods, movements, East-West poetics, colonial and postcolonial literatures, and minority and marginalized literatures. In addition, students can explore such issues as literature and gender and the interaction of literature with other fields.
The program draws upon a distinguished and diverse faculty from several disciplines. It seeks to combine the rigor of a structured curriculum with flexibility to meet the needs of individual students. Each student arranges his or her program in consultation with the graduate director and an adviser. Students may take as many as 50 percent of their courses from other departments. The program participates in the Transliteratures program (q.u.).
Candidates for the Ph.D. degree must complete 48 credits of course work and 24 research credits. After they have completed 12 credits at Rutgers, students entering the program with an M.A. degree from another university may apply to transfer as many as 9 credits. They will need permission of the graduate director and the graduate dean, however, to complete the transfer. Candidates must demonstrate competence in three languages other than English. In addition, they must pass a comprehensive oral exam. The degree will be conferred after successful defense of the dissertation.
Applications requesting consideration for fellowship grants should be submitted before February 1. The Graduate Student Handbook is available online.