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London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies (LINKS)

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The London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies (LINKS), is a collaboration between London institutions involved in teaching and research in comparative literary studies, to promote dialogue and cooperation.

Participating institutions include University College London, King’s College London, Goldsmiths, Queen Mary, SOAS, Birkbeck and Royal Holloway.

After pioneering a very successful annual MA graduate conference series, LINKS launched a new Research Seminar on 21 October 2014.

The Links Research Seminar

The LINKS Research Seminar meets monthly during the Autumn and Spring terms at the Institute of Modern Languages Research at Senate House, to bring together scholars and graduates from London and beyond.

For information on the seminar, on a particualr event, or to register your interest and request to be added to the mailing list, please contact links.seminar (@gmail.com)

Autumn Term 2016

  • Tuesday 11 October 2016, 5pm: 'Bibliomigrancy: World Literature as a Pact with Books'. Speaker: B. Venkat Mani, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Chair: Francesca Orsini, Chair of CCLPS, SOAS. SOAS, Main Building, G51.
  • Tuesday 8 November 2016, 6:30pm: 'Aggregating Images, 1809. Returning to the Problem of Pictures in Goethe's "Elective Affinities"'. Philipp Ekardt, University of London (SAS), The Warburg Institute. Birkbeck Malet Street Building, room 538.

The LINKS MA Conference

The conference is organised by the MA students of the various participating institutions, together with research students who also help select papers and chair panels. Papers are given by MA students.

The first 2010 LINKS MA conference took place at King's; the 2011 at UCL; the 2012 at Goldsmiths; the 2014 at Queen Mary; the 2015 at SOAS. Presentations and programmes of these conferences can be found below. 

For Goldsmiths students: MA CLS students that have given papers at previous LINKS conferences have found the experience an excellent one, and have received very useful feedback and comments from other students on Comparative literature programmes. Research students have also found this an enriching experience, helpful, for example, in view of preparing papers for other conferences, gaining experience in conference organisation, and in developing their own cv. For more information, or if you would like to take the lead on any additional activity for graduate students, please get in touch with Prof. Lucia Boldrini at l.boldrini (@gold.ac.uk).

LINKS Conference 2015

5th Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature

School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London

 More information soon!

LINKS Conference 2014

The 2014 LINKS MA conference took place at Queen Mary on Friday 6 June 2014. The presentation and programme follow; other information, such as how to register, etc, can still be read on the LINKS 2014 webpage.

LINKS – London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies

4th Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature

Room 2.10 Laws Building

Queeen Mary University of London

Mile End Campus

Friday 6 June 2014 
9.00 – 18.00

Followed by a wine reception from 18:00 – 20:00

Identity and Otherness in Comparative Literature

Call for Papers

MA students studying Comparative Literature from London and beyond are warmly invited to send us proposals for fifteen-minute papers (plus five minutes discussion time). Proposals are welcome on ANY aspect of comparative literary study. Subjects may include, but are not limited to:

Cultural Studies | Self and Other | Literatures in the Global World

Gender, Corporeality and Writing | Literary Criticism and Theory

Forms and Genres | Themes, Myths and Archetypes

Literature and Other Arts | Reception Studies and Translation

We strongly encourage submissions relating to MA dissertation topics. Essays previously written for your MA course will also be considered.

Proposed titles and abstracts (max. 300 words) should be sent to linksldn2014@gmail.com by Friday 18th April 2014.

A round-table discussion will take place between several University of London professors. The topic of the discussion will be “The continuing relevance of identity and otherness within Comparative Literature”. Speakers to be announced shortly.

LINKS does not charge MA students to take part or to attend.

Submissions are open only to MA students but the event will beadvertised to the general public.

Email: linksldn2014 (@gmail.com)

Website

Facebook: London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies

Programme

Time

Details

9.00–9.30

Registration

9.30–9.45

Welcome (Yiyi López Gándara, Queen Mary)

9.45–10.45

Session One: The Intersection of Aesthetics and Ethics

Chair: Thea Petrou (UCL)

Tom Chadwick (Goldsmiths):
 Infinite Natality: Anti-Interiority, Dialogism, and Freedom both Aesthetic and Political in Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace

Colin Baumgart-Osborn (Goldsmiths):
 The Affirmation of Constraint? Portrayals of Life and loss in the Oulipo Group

Rita Hynes (Radboud University Nijmegen, Netherlands):
 The Comparative Intercultural Language in James Joyce’s

Ulysses (1922) and LeAnne Howe’s Shell Shaker (2001)

10.45–11.15

Coffee Break (Laws Foyer, Ground Floor)

11.15–12.15

Session Two: Narrative Approaches, Approaches to Narrative


Chair: Jacob McGuinn (Queen Mary)

Ricardo Maciel dos Anjos (Queen Mary):
New Media and New Narratives: The Challenges of Video-Game Narratives

Natalia Bartashevitch (Goldsmiths):
The Fragmented Journey in Theo Angelopoulos’ Ulysses’ Gaze as Unattainable Nostos

Iris Fernández (University of Hull):
A Comparative Study on Cervantes’s influence on contemporary fantasy fiction: the quixotism and cervantism of Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (2004)

14.00

Lunch (own arrangements on campus)

14.00–15.00

Session Three: Cultural Identity


Chair: Andrew Hines (Queen Mary)

Thomas Kelly (SOAS):
‘Cultural China’ in the Anglophone texts of second-generation Chinese Diasporic authors from the British West Indies

Will Fee (Goldsmiths):
Identity and Displacement: The Bifurcated Self in Tales of Modern Exile

Brian Hicks (King’s College London):
Reversing Communities: Assimilation in Anand’s Untouchable and Conrad’s Heart of Darkness

15.00–15.15

Short Break

15.15–16.15

Session Four: Translation

Chair: Nora Parr (SOAS)

Kali Myers (Queen Mary): Translating Gender (Troubles): Simone de Beauvoir, Judith Butler, and the American Appropriation of ‘French Theory’

Raabia Hirani (Queen Mary): Loss and Gain in Translation: Mavlana Rumi’s Ney Nameh in English

Ama Rohatiner (Goldsmiths): Correspondence between the poetic dramas of W.B. Yeats and those of his Polish contemporary, Stanislaw Wyspiański

16.15–16.45

Coffee Break (Laws Foyer, Ground Floor)

16.45–17.45

Round table discussion:
The continuing relevance of identity and otherness within Comparative Literature

Chair: Kali Myers

Dr. Anup Grewal (King’s College London)

Professor Josh Cohen (Goldsmiths)

Professor Leonard Olschner (Queen Mary)

17.45–18.00

Closing remarks

18.00–20.00

Wine Reception, also involving undergraduate students in Comparative Literature at Queen Mary (Laws Foyer, Ground Floor)

LINKS Conference 2012

Presentation and programme of the 2012 LINKS MA Conference that took place at Goldsmiths 

LINKS – London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies
3rd Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature

Comparative Literature in a Fast-Changing Global World 

New Academic Building, LG02
Goldsmiths, University of London

Friday 8 June 2012
9am-6.30pm

LINKS conferences foster a space to discuss and re-think intercultural ‘links’, and to approach literary and non-literary texts from a comparative perspective. For the third time, students and staff in comparative literature departments across London have joined forces, providing MA students in comparative literature with a unique opportunity to exchange ideas, and develop their networking, presentation and discussion skills.

Round Table

Friday, 8 June, 2-4pm

New Academic Building, LG02

Dr Florian Mussgnug (University College London)

Dr Carole Sweeney (Goldsmiths, University of London)

Dr Kiera Vaclavik (Queen Mary, University of London)

Prof Javed Majeed (King's College London)

Dr Lucia Boldrini (Goldsmiths, Chair)

Globalization brings with it large-scale movements of people (whether by forced displacement or by choice), increased, sometimes forced, multilingualism, and ever faster forms of communication. What impact does this have on our ideas about literature and literary communication, on our understanding of linguistic, cultural, and disciplinary boundaries? Does “comparative literature” still have a place, or should it be replaced by “world literature”, or by other categories and groupings? Is literary translation, its role and practices, changing too? What is the impact of the new media, with their privileging of bite-size texts, on literature, and on the ways we write and read? This round table, organized within the context of LINKS, brings together scholars of literature and culture workign at the University of London in order to reflect on the challenges of comparative literature in the global world: the challenges it faces, the challenges it poses. 

Programme

9.00 - 9.15

Arrival and Welcome

9.15 - 10.30

Session 1: On the (Im)Possibility of Writing Chair: Beth Guilding (Goldsmiths) Kathleen Hughes (Goldsmiths): “Illness in the Work of Franz Kafka.” Paul Dallman (UCL): “Eschatology and Apocalypse in Derek Walcott’s White Egrets.” [title TBC] Meiping Zhang (Goldsmiths): “Impossible Death and Subversive Writing: On the Hegelian Motifs in Blanchot.”

10.30 - 10.50

Coffee

10.50 - 12.30

Session 2: Spaces of Selfhood and Otherness Chair: Johanna Schmidt (KCL) Megha Agarwal (Goldsmiths): “Variations in the Depiction of the Underworld.” Ana Berdinskikh (UCL): “Rewriting Apocalypse: A Study of Recent Canadian Fiction.” Rumeysa Ozcan (KCL): “Dancing Alhambra: Poetics of Cross-Genre Representations of Space and the Aesthetics of Duende.” Louis Zvesper (Goldsmiths): “The Otherness of Other Worlds.”

12.30 - 13.15

Lunch

13.15 - 14.50

Round Table: Comparative Literature in a Fast-Changing Global World Chair: Dr Lucia Boldrini (Goldsmiths) Prof Javed Majeed (King's College London) Dr Florian Mussgnug (University College London) Dr Carole Sweeney (Goldsmiths) Dr Kiera Vaclavik (Queen Mary)

14.50 - 15.10

Coffee

15.10 - 16.25

Session 3: In/Stability in an Open World Chair: Tanguy Harma (Goldsmiths) Marissa Farahbod (KCL): “The Role of Divinity in the Iliad and Shahnameh.” Federica Chiocchetti (UCL): “Photo-Textualities: A Challenge for Comparative Literature.” Emily Holman (KCL): “The Relevance of the Universal: New Criticism Revisited.”

16.25 - 16.35 Short break

16.35 - 17.50

Session 4: Migration, Expulsion, Exile Chair: Rachel Thompson (Goldsmiths) Kahleelah Jones (KCL): “Local Lives, National Spaces: Do Conceptions of National Identity Change Because of Migration? Mary Farrelly (UCL): “Urban Aliens: Exiles and the Subversion of Metropolitan Structures in Samuel Beckett’s Murphy and Cristina Peri Rossi’s La nave de los locos.” Will Kemp (Goldsmiths): “Making an Exception Out of Kafka: The Man Who Disappeared Reconsidered in the Light of Giorgio Agamben’s Recent Legal Theory.”  

17.50 - 18.00

Closing remarks

LINKS Conference 2011

Presentation and programme of the 2011 LINKS MA Conference that took place at UCL

LINKS – London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies
2nd Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature

Comparative Literature: Beyond the Crisis

Medawar Watson Lecture Theatre

University College London

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

9am-6.30pm

This conference fosters a space to discuss and re-think intercultural ‘links’, and to approach literary and non-literary texts from a comparative perspective. For the second time, students and staff in comparative literature departments across London have joined forces, providing MA students in Comparative Literture with a unique opportunity to exchange ideas, and develop their networking, presentation, and discussion skills.

Round Table

Recession is a time for asking fundamental questions about value. How will funding cuts, curriculum reform, and higher tuition fees transform teaching and research? How will they affect the future of comparative literature? What will be the social and cultural role of comparative studies in a rapidly changing world? This round table, organized within the context of LINKS, brings together four leading scholars of literature and culture, all working in London, to reflect on the public value of their discipline, and on the future of comparative literature.

Participants

Dr Lucia Boldrini (Goldsmith University London)

Prof Paul Hamilton (Queen Mary, University of London)

Prof Tim Mathews (University College London)

Prof Robert Weninger (Kings College London)

Call for papers

MA students in Comparative Literature from anywhere in London and beyond are warmly invited to send proposals for twenty-minute papers on any aspect of comparative literary study. Subjects may include, but are not limited to:

Cultural identities / Self and Other

Literatures of a globalized world

Gender, corporeality, and writing

Literary criticism and theory

Forms and genres

Themes, myths, and archetypes

Literature and other arts

Reception Studies and Translation

Presentations must not exceed 20 minutes. Abstracts should be up to 400 words in length, and must include • your name, email address, contact telephone number, institutional affiliation and year of study• title of research /dissertation project• note of any technical requirements for presentation.

Abstracts should be sent to f.mussgnug@ucl.ac.uk before Saturday, 30 April.

For more information, please contact Dr Rosa Mucignat rosa.mucignat@kcl.ac.uk or Dr Florian Mussgnug f.mussgnug (@ucl.ac.uk) .

Programme

9.00

Welcome

9.15

SESSION ONE: TRAVELLING CONCEPTS / MYTHS IN NEW CONTEXTS Chair: Georgia Panteli (UCL) Sophie Corser (Goldsmiths): “Ovid’s English Voice.” Pablo Maurette (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill): “Lucretius among Early Modern physicians and the Sense of Touch." Shao-Hua Wang (KCL): “From the Man in the Crowd to the Man on the Train: The Baudelairean Flaneur Sped Up.” Melissa Gelinas (UCL): “Magical Realism, Postmodernism and Mythopoesis: Perspectives from Cien años de soledad and Not Wanted on the Voyage.” Christoph Söding (KCL): “500 years of Utopia: Collectivism in Tommaso Campanella’s Città del Sole and Star Trek.”

11.15

Coffee

11.30

SESSION TWO: THEORIES OF LITERATURE Chair: Erin Horakova (Goldsmiths) Laura Tenschert(Goldsmiths): “Walter Benjamin’s metaphysical theory of language.” Niall Sreenan (KCL): “Darwinian Literary Theory: Misguided determinism? Or the next step in the evolution of Literary Theory?” Regina Fabry (Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz): “On Self-Narration in Literature: Thomas Bernhard’s Korrektur; Paul Auster’s Invisible and Daniel C. Dennett’s Theory of Narrative Self.” Philip Sayers (UCL): “The Possibility of ‘Good’ Psychoanalytical Approaches to Literature and Film.” Beth Guilding (Goldsmiths): “A Royal Road to Primal Fiction: Dreaming in Freud, Blanchot and Borges.”

1.30

Lunch

2.15

Round Table: Comparative Literature Beyond the Crisis Chair: Dr Florian Mussgnug (UCL) Dr Lucia Boldrini (Goldsmiths, London) Prof Paul Hamilton (Queen Mary, London) Prof Timothy Mathews (UCL) Prof Robert Weninger (King’s College London)

4.00

Coffee

4.15

SESSION THREE: COMPLEX IDENTITIES / NARRATIVES OF THE SELF Chair: Daniel O'Connor (KCL) Kate Willman (KCL): “Constructing Identities: (Dis)Engagement with History in Juan Goytisolo’s Marks of Identity and Cesare Pavese’s The Moon and the Bonfires.” Emma Grylls (UCL): “Loneliness in the fiction of Yiyun Li and William Trevor.” Maha Abdel Megeed (KCL) “The Metamorphosed Clown Mask: From Rabelais to Machado de Assis.” Christine Tiedemann (KCL): “Post-mortem Identities.” Scott Yearsley (UCL) “Sweet Transvestites from Krypton! Secret Identities and Sexual Performativity in Superman comics and The Rocky Horror Picture Show”.

6.15

Closing Remarks: Rosa Mucignat (KCL) and Florian Mussgnug (UCL)

The organizers of LINKS 2011 thank the UCL Faculty Institute for Graduate Studies for its generous support. This event is free of charge and open to all.

For more information, please contact Dr Florian Mussgnug at f.mussgnug (@ucl.ac.uk).

LINKS Conference 2010

Presentation of the 2010 LINKS MA Conference that took place at King's

LINKS – London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies

1st Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature

King’s College London, 2 June 2010

Call for Papers

The conference aims to bring together MA students from Comparative Literature programmes of the University of London and beyond. This one-day event hosted by King’s College London will also mark the creation of a London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies (LINKS), which will promote collaboration between London institutions in the field of Comparative Literature.

This conference seeks to foster a space to discuss, problematize, and rethink possible ways of discovering ‘links’, by approaching literary and non‐literary texts from a comparative perspective. This will be an excellent opportunity for MA students to develop their networking, presentation, and discussion skills, especially valuable for future studies at PhD level.

Students and staff of King’s and UCL have joined forces to organize the first London Graduate Student Conference in Comparative Literature, and invite MA students to send proposals for twenty‐minute papers on any topic of Comparative Literature.

We welcome proposals on any aspect of modern, medieval, or classical literature. Subjects may include, but are not limited to:

Cultural identities / Self and Other
Literatures of a globalized world
Gender, corporeality, and writing
Literary criticism and theory
Forms and genres
Themes, myths, and archetypes
Literature and other arts
Reception studies Translation

Presentations should not exceed 20 minutes.
Abstracts should be up to 400 words in length.
Submissions should be sent to links@kcl.ac.uk by 29th March 2010.

Your abstract details should include:

  • Your name, email address, contact telephone number, institutional affiliation and year of study
  • Title of research /dissertation project
  • Note of any technical requirements for presentation.

For more information visit the King's website.
or e-mail: links (@kcl.ac.uk)