Annual Lecture of the Centre for World Literatures

The annual lecture of the Centre for World Literature will be delivered by Dr Özen Nergis Dolce

Location: William Bragg SR GR.25

Enter via the front entrance of the William Bragg building, cross the foyer to the far right corner and SR (GR.25) is the first door on the right, immediately next to the stairs.


The annual lecture of the Centre for World Literature, titled ‘Modernising Empires: Enlightenment, Nationalist Vanguard and Non-Western Literary Modernities’, will be delivered by Dr Özen Nergis Dolcerocca (Bologna University).

Dr ozen nergus dolce



Sometime between the late eighteenth and mid- nineteenth centuries, intellectuals in Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Middle East discovered how ‘backward’ they were. As the cultural hegemony of the West grew, they grappled with questions of national self-definition, debating how to catch up with Western modernity and how to negotiate European literary models. These debates sparked a series of cultural reform projects, including language reform and the systematic translation of European literatures.

"Modernizing Empires" is a comparative project on three imperial traditions caught between the East-West divide: Russia, Turkey, and Japan. A multilingual study of non-Western literary modernities and the first to bring these specific traditions together, the project challenges Eurocentric models of literary history that interpret these cases as deviations, failures, or late emulations. The lecture will present the project's research strategy of historical and literary comparisons between these emerging national literary systems and its combination of qualitative and quantitative methods to map transnational networks of narrative strategies, conceptual systems, and translation practices.