Shaden Tageldin to present April 10 Comparative Literature Luncheon lecture

April 04, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Shaden Tageldin, associate professor of cultural studies and comparative literature and director of the African Studies Initiative at the University of Minnesota, will present “Beyond Latinity, Can the Vernacular Speak? South-South Literary Comparison and the Foreignness of the Vernacular” at 12:15 p.m. April 10 in 102 Kern Building.

Tageldin is the author of “Disarming Words: Empire and the Seductions of Translation in Egypt” (University of California Press, 2011), which was awarded an honorable mention for the American Comparative Literature Association’s Harry Levin Prize. Her articles have appeared in Comparative Literature Studies, International Journal of Middle East Studies, Journal of Arabic Literature, Journal of Historical Sociology, Philological Encounters, PMLA, and other journals and edited volumes.  For her essay “Secularizing Islam: Carlyle, al-Siba‘i, and the Translations of ‘Religion’ in British Egypt,” which appeared in the January 2011 issue of PMLA, Tageldin received the Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies (INCS) Essay Prize for 2011. 

The recipient of a Frederick Burkhardt Residential Fellowship for Recently Tenured Scholars from the American Council of Learned Societies, she is completing a book provisionally titled “Toward a Transcontinental Theory of Modern Comparative Literature.” Crossing European and Ottoman imperial frames and literary and theoretical discourses in Arabic, English and French, this project debunks Eurocentric histories of comparative literature, arguing that the long 19th century transcontinental struggle to make language and “life” mutually translatable informed ideologies of comparability that underpin the modern discipline.

This event is a part of the Comparative Literature Luncheon lecture series, a weekly, informal lunchtime gathering of students, faculty and other members of the University community. Each week the event begins at 12:15 p.m. — coffee, tea and light lunch fare are provided. At 12:30 p.m. there will be a presentation, by a visitor or a local speaker, on a topic related to any humanities discipline. All students, faculty, colleagues and friends are welcome. For a full list of Comparative Literature lunches, visit This event is sponsored by the Department of Comparative Literature and the Center for Global Studies.

Last Updated April 07, 2017