COOL CLASSES: “Performance, Literature, and the Archive”

COOL CLASSES: “Performance, Literature, and the Archive”

Class name: “Performance, Literature, and the Archive”

Taught by: Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature Aniko Szucs


Here’s what Szucs had to say about her class:

This comparative literature course explores the “archive” as both an institutional and performance practice and a theoretical concept­­­­. The hegemonic, patriarchal institution of the archive that constructs and perpetuates the canon and the master narratives of history while, marginalizing, silencing, and erasing the subaltern and the subcultural has been contested by the poststructuralist philosophers and critical theorists of the late 20th and early 21st century. A new concept of the archive transpired in the interdisciplinary fields of postcolonial, gender, cultural, and performance studies, one that is more utopian and more inclusive and is not limited by dominant repressive power structures and ideologies. This archive does not merely revisit the past to excavate the eradicated traces and silenced voices, but also, perhaps more importantly, opens the potential for a formerly unimaginable, and yet-to-be-imagined future.

Students in this class are encouraged to think about archive as an ever-changing, always-in-formation, and always-becoming collection of material and immaterial traces, historical records, affective experiences, and structures of feeling that they can also form, expand, or contest. For this reason, for their final projects, students will create their own archives, or counter-archives, selecting sites, literary or historical subjects, communities, or performances that have been under-researched and underrepresented in the hegemonic canon.



See what other courses the Department of Comparative Literature is offering this semester.

Cool Classes is a series that highlights interesting, unusual, and unique courses that enrich the Haverford experience.

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