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"World Literature In Between" program and application


To Students of World and Comparative Literature,


I am delighted to invite you to attend the conference on “World Literature in Between” to be held 18-20 December 2008 in Istanbul, Turkey.

The conference promises to be a unique event and an inimitable opportunity for students of world and comparative literature to come into contact and learn from leading scholars in their field, as well as to do so in one of the world cities which both currently and historically lies at the very heart of the many debates and interactions which we refer to as “World Literature.” The conference is being organized jointly by the English and Comparative Literature Department at Columbia University and the city of Istanbul. Its program will consist entirely of plenary sessions presented by prominent scholars and theorists of World Literature, and its audience will be comprised mainly of graduate or advanced students from across Europe and America. Though these students will not be presenting papers, they will receive a certificate of credit in acknowledgment of their participation in this singular event.

Advanced and graduate students with an interest in world literature and theory are encouraged to apply to attend this conference. An application can be found on page 3 of this document. Please submit completed applications by email to by November 10. Accepted students will receive an official letter of invitation as well as guidance in arranging transportation and accommodation in Istanbul.

The conference organizers, Efe Çakmak, David Damrosch, and I, very much hope that you will apply to take part in this event. In the meantime, please feel free to send any questions you might have to, and most of all, to peruse the exciting (and growing) program of presenters which can be found on page 2 of this document.



Emily Cersonsky

Columbia University

Department of English and Comparative Literature



“World Literature In Between” Program

Istanbul, December 2008

(updated 6 Oct. 2008)



December 18

Opening: David Damrosch, Orhan Pamuk

Keynote: Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak


1st Panel: Productive peripheries

Chair: David Damrosch

Speakers: Pascale Casanova

Péter Dávidházi, "From Periphery to Prophecy: The Making of a National Poet in Hungary"

Hülya Adak



December 19

2nd Panel: Canon formation

Chair: E. Efe Çakmak

Speakers: Jale Parla, “A ‘chromatic’ view of the Turkish novelistic canon”

Nergis Ertürk

Martin Puchner, "The World of Literature"


3rd Panel: Nationalism and cosmopolitanism

Chair: Sureyyya Evren, "Burning Three Flags / Nationalism, Anarchism and Literature"

Speakers: Bruce Robbins

Murat Belge, “Nationalism and Cosmopolitanism in Turkish Literature”

Mads Rosendahl Thomsen, “Transnational literatures as a challenge to literary history”



December 20

4th Panel: Literature after Orientalism

Chair: Hilmi Yavuz

Speakers: Aamir Mufti, “Orientalism and the Institution of World Literatures”

Sabry Hafez

Sait Aykut


5th Panel: Comparative Literature in exile

Chair: Faruk Birtek

Speakers: David Damrosch
Emily Apter, "Comparative Literature in Real Time"
Djelal Kadir, "Comparative Literature as Exile"


Round Table and Discussion

Moderator: David Damrosch

Discussants: International Students of Comparative/World Literature

Application for Participation
“World Literature in Between” Conference, Istanbul, December 2008
Application due November 10, 2008 to



Email Address:

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In approximately 200-300 words, please describe your interest in World Literature and your reasons for wanting to attend this conference.


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