Comparative Literature and World Cinema: Reading Globalectically

Fall 2022
Winter 2023
Freshman - Senior
Class Size: 25
16 Credits per quarter
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Born in Kenya, author and postcolonial literary theorist, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, coined the term “globalectics” to call for a decentered view of the world, one in which the flatness of the English-speaking order is productively rounded out by the multitude of other languages and expressive traditions. For Ngũgĩ, “Reading globalectically is a way of approaching any text from whatever times and places to allow its content to form a free conversation with other texts of one’s time and place… It is to read a text with the eyes of the world; it is to see the world with the eyes of the text.”

Borrowing the framework of globalectics, this program will introduce you to a sample of contemporary literary and film traditions from outside of the English-speaking world, with selection of texts from Eastern Europe, West, Central and East Asia, South America, and Africa. You will learn to read literature and film as texts that respond to and problematize various cultural, social, economic, historical and political forces. Thinking with these texts, you will learn to ask and explore prevailing questions across the Humanities, especially as they are related to subjectivity, agency, and power in a rapidly shifting “globalized” world.

This two-quarter program is both reading and writing intensive. Fall quarter emphasizes seminars in which you exercise close reading skills through class discussions and weekly essay writing. The seminar model will help you learn some of the key arguments in theory and criticism as you build a vocabulary to engage critically with texts. Additionally, by placing theory in dialogue with the particular arguments made in the films and literature, you’ll learn to expand upon those theoretical frameworks with new lines of inquiry. Winter quarter shifts to a workshop structure in which you design and complete a theory-informed comparative analysis project. The workshops will allow you plenty of time to work with your community of peers as you propose an argument, select and narrow down your sources, and write and revise your final projects. As you focus on the writing process, you’ll learn how to participate in peer critique to give and receive effective feedback and to confidently edit your own writing. The program will end with individual presentations of student work through a mock-conference model.

As this program is a fully-remote offering, you will need reliable and steady access to a computer, internet connection, video and microphone. The program will consist of two synchronous sessions for lectures, seminars, and workshops and two asynchronous sessions for film screenings and additional peer critiques.

This program serves as an “entry” to the Humanities: Culture Text and Language in World Societies (CTLWS) and the Literary Arts and Studies (LAS) paths of study. As such, it will introduce students to the conventions of academic inquiry within humanities fields and prepare them for more advanced work.

This program incorporates Greener Foundations. Greener Foundations is Evergreen’s in-person 2-quarter introductory student success course, which provides all first-year students with the skills and knowledge they need to thrive at Evergreen. First-year students who register for 14 credits in this program will be placed into Greener Foundations for an additional 2 credits, totaling 16 credits. Once first-year students have been placed into Greener Foundations, they will receive an email confirming their registration status.


Fall 2022 Registration

Course Reference Numbers

So - Sr (16): 10089
Fr (14): 10166
Winter 2023 Registration

Course Reference Numbers

So - Sr (16): 20070
Fr (14): 20073

Academic details

Preparatory for studies and careers in

literature, writing, publishing, film studies, teaching

Maximum Enrollment
Class Standing


In Person or Remote
Remote (F)
Remote (W)
Time Offered
Schedule Evergreen link
see Schedule Evergreen for detailed schedule

First Meeting