In her article "Comparative Literature and the Culture of the Context," Jan Walsh Hokenson poses a series of interrogatives around the question of what, as comparatists, we have learned about "literature in the context of the culture it represents" (Mario J. Valdés). She argues that in theoretical terms, culture has become the new vessel for the old wine of sources and influences, and that global intercultural contexts will change the analytical categories for comparatists in the coming millennium. In Hokenson's opinion, if comparative literature is to survive it must regain the panoptic view, and if it is to thrive as an academic discipline, it will have to realize its historical aim of embracing all literature, notably of the East as well as the West. And finally, Hokenson proposes that comparatists clarify the credentials of the discipline, as historically rooted in the analysis of cross-cultural contexts, so that the discipline may assume its logical and deserved role as premier mode of critical study in the coming era of an emergent global poetics.
Hokenson, Jan Walsh.
"Comparative Literature and the Culture of the Context."
CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture
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