Program in Comparative Literature

Ph.D. Requirements

The Ph.D. requires a minimum of 61 hours of course work (including work completed for the M.A.), six of which are for the dissertation and including the Comparative Literature Proseminar, CL 180K. The distribution of these requirements builds on the core established in the first four semesters of graduate study so that the student acquires a breadth of knowledge in literary history and genres. Students must also demonstrate competence in three foreign languages (see Language Requirements). For the Ph.D., they will continue their study of Comparative Literature, and they will also be required to develop extensive knowledge of one national literature and broad knowledge of a second national literature written in a different language (one of these two literatures may be English). Students will also complete course work in a third national language, although some may elect to develop a thorough command of another discipline through course work and independent research and to study the interrelationships between that discipline and literature. After completing course work for the Ph.D., students will take a Comprehensive Oral Examination, present and defend a dissertation prospectus, and then write and defend a dissertation in Comparative Literature.

Summary of requirements for the Ph.D.

  • 18 hours of Comparative Literature courses (including CL 385 & 390, but not thesis, report, or dissertation hours) , plus the Comparative Literature Proseminar, CL 180K.
  • 18 hours in one national literature (e.g., Latin, English, Russian, modern Chinese)
  • 12 hours in a second national literature (written in a language different from first)
  • 6 hours in a third national literature (written in a language different from the other two) or in a separate discipline.
  • 6 hours dissertation
  • competence in three foreign languages (another discipline may be substituted for the third language, (see Language Requirements)
  • No more than 20 percent of the hours on the Program of Work for the PhD may have been taken on the credit/no credit basis