Children’s Literature and Comparative Literature: Hansel and Gretel in the House of Step-Parents

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Laleh Atashi


Children’s Literature and Comparative Literature are presented not as an indepen­dent disciplines, but as “subdisciplines” in either Persian Literature depar­tments or Arabic Literature departments in Iran. I intend to compare the lesson plans issued by the ministry of science for these two “subdisciplines” and try to see the outline of the courses often presented in both, and bring to light the big absentees in them. This study is mostly descriptive and probes into formally published lesson plans which might not be practiced in the actual classes. I am well aware that the actual expe­rience of attending comparative literature classes, and children’s literature classes in Iran would offer us a deeper insights into the way these two “subdisciplines” have been academized. However, I suppose the lesson plans published by the Iranian Ministry of Science are important references that determine the contours of academic children’s literature and comparative literature in Iran and therefore should be interrogated in order to pave the way for significant changes. At the end of my talk, I will pose some questions about the ideological implications of including common compulsory courses in both “subdisciplines” which would lead to the abortion of the interdisciplinarity of both children’s literature and comparative literature.


Published: Nov 14, 2022

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Between Chaos and Discipline: Iranian Comparative Literature