Three Georgetown students are among only 15 undergraduates who will present papers at the one of the world’s largest conference of comparative literature scholars being held at the university, March 7-10.
The students, who will forgo part part of their spring break to attend the one of the largest American comparative literature conferences, were selected from a group of 80 undergraduates from around the world for an undergraduate research seminar on “Spaces of Otherness in a Globalized World.”
World-renowned novelist Amitav Ghosh will give the keynote speaker for the annual meeting.
Nicoletta Pireddu, professor and chair of the Italian department, has spent the past two years planning the conference.
“We are impressed by the quality of all the selected students,” Pireddu says. “This initiative highlights the pivotal role that an undergraduate education in the humanities plays in shaping sophisticated critical thinking.”
A comparative literature expert, the professor says bringing the annual conference to Georgetown gives her a “chance to serve an association that I deeply appreciate and to promote scholarly debates across languages, literatures and cultures that reflect the international and global mission of our university.”
“This conference covers an impressive variety of topics and innovative approaches,” she adds.
More than 2,000 visiting scholars, each of whom will present a paper, are expected to participate in some of the 184 themed seminars.
Each seminardraws eight to 12 participants meeting over two or three days, a format designed to promote meaningful feedback, dialogue and future collaboration.
Georgetown College Dean Chris Celenza views the conference as an opportunity to showcase Georgetown’s robust scholarship at the intersection of teaching and research.
“We are especially proud of our thriving comparative literature program, which involves over twenty members of our distinguished faculty across the humanities, generates interdisciplinary research and serves countless students,” he says.
The gathering of scholars will “help catalyze projects already underway, even as we look forward to new horizons,” he adds.