A World-Systems Analysis of Semiperipheral LiteraturesThe Case of Romanian Literature

The main objective of our project is to carry out a world-systems analysis of Romanian literature as semiperipheral literature. We will describe in detail hereinafter this main objective by establishing several specific secondary objectives that focus on certain thematic fields:

Objective 1: The construction of the theoretical framework: the adaptation of the WSA to the semiperipheral literatures by the integration of particular methodologies.

Objective 2: Charting Romanian Literature as semiperipheral literature.Thematic field A – Romanian “Literatures”: regional differences in the Romanian literature; Romanian literature as core-literature (related to the literature in the Republic of Moldova or to the literature in the Transylvania under Austro-Hungarian domination); Romanian literature as dependent literature (in relation with Western influences); Romanian literature as colonial literature (socialist realism). Thematic field B – Romanian Literary Cosmopolitanism: bilingualism and acculturation (Emil Cioran, Eugen Ionescu, B. Fondane, Ilarie Voronca, Paul Celan, etc.); exile and Diaspora (Herta Müller, Andrei Codrescu, Norman Manea); various strategies of “canonization” of the Romanian literature at world level (the Sibiu Literary Circle: I. Negoiţescu, Ştefan Aug. Doinaş, Radu Stanca).

Objective 3: Contextualizing Romanian Literature as semiperipheral literature.Thematic field C – The Translation Zone: competition between the translated and original literature in Romania; relations between translation, plagiarism, adaptation and imitation; relations between translation and censorship; translation of Romanian works abroad. Thematic field D – Literary Forms and Styles: the existence of a Romanian High Romanticism; how “modern” Romanian modernism really is; Romanian postmodernism in East European context; the late genesis of the Romanian novel; the central role of poetry in the Romanian literature.

Objective 4: Evaluating Romanian Literature as semiperipheral literature.Thematic field E – “We” and “the Others”: Romanian identity stereotypes in literature; dialectics of the French and German models; superiority/inferiority complexes in relation with neighboring literatures; self-perception of the Romanian literature in Romanian literary histories; perception of the Romanian literature in the international literary histories.