107B Ruth Adams Building, Douglass Campus
Uri Eisenweig, Director
In response to the new cultural challenges posed to American institutions of higher learning by the growing globalization of societies, the Transliteratures project is dedicated to the promotion, at Rutgers, of foreign literatures and cultures in a manner that transcends the dual relation of these cultures and literatures to our own, and takes into account the interaction between these foreign cultures themselves. The project helps graduate students in foreign literature programs better situate the culture in which they specialize in an international context, through various initiatives taken at three levels: curricular, extra-curricular, and with respect to student support.
On the curricular level, Transliteratures sponsors two major initiatives. One is a recently implemented graduate school requirement that all graduate students in foreign literature and language programs take at least two seminars in a foreign literature program other than their own. To make this requirement possible, all foreign literature programs have developed a number of seminars taught in English, with texts available in translation. The other initiative is the creation of intensive summer language reading classes open exclusively to graduate students. The classes usually offered are in French, German, Italian, Latin, Portuguese, and Spanish.
On the extracurricular level, Transliteratures provides support to a wide range of lectures and conferences organized by the foreign literature programs, and that are of interest to students and faculty from neighboring programs.
Finally, the Transliteratures project provides support to graduate students. Special fellowships that carry a stipend of $18,000 for a five-year period, have been created to attract outstanding graduate applicants with advanced knowledge in at least two of the foreign languages taught at the graduate level at Rutgers. Qualifying students are required to take two regular seminars in a foreign literature other than the one they specialize in, with the texts read in the original language. One fellowship a year is available for each one of the six programs involved: classics, comparative literature, French, German, Italian, and Spanish. Also, Transliteratures provides small research- and conference-related travel grants to students.