Comparative Literature

British Academy award for Patricia Novillo-Corvalan

29 March 2018

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Dr Patricia Novillo-Corvalan, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Comparative Literature, has won a British Academy Small Research Grant for a project entitled 'Indo-Argentine Cultural Networks: Tagore, Victoria Ocampo, and South-South Solidarity'.

Patricia’s project explores the cultural relations between countries located in the (so-called) Global South, focusing on India and Argentina. Originally coined in what has been recognised as the first Asian-African conference held in Bandung in 1955, the geopolitical phrase Global South is of extreme relevance to the recent transnational 'turn' in literary studies that has problematised Western-centric paradigms by foregrounding less-studied geographical areas across the globe. She examines these cultural encounters through a case study: the relationship between the Bengali author Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) and the Argentine writer and feminist Victoria Ocampo (1890-1979). Her aim is to elucidate how south-south networks prioritise cultural enrichment and solidarity through a shared understanding of questions of colonialism, education, and aesthetic experimentation.

By reading Tagore and Ocampo as part of a comparative horizon that deploys a Global South epistemology, as well as by positioning it in relation to the outward-looking, multidirectional cultural models of literature they proposed: vishva-sahitya (Tagore) and Sur (Ocampo) – while remaining aware of the fraught, complex relationship their countries sustained with imperial Britain – Patricia seeks to situate them as decisive figures that can significantly enrich and enlarge our understanding of modernist practices in the Global South.

For more details about BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants, please see the page here:

Comparative Literature, School of European Culture and Languages, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NF

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Last Updated: 23/01/2014