Jul 16, 2024  
Course Catalog 2023-2024 
Course Catalog 2023-2024 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Literary Translation Minor

The minor consists of a minimum of 5 full courses (or the equivalent).

Note: Students must earn minimum grades of C- or P for all courses that apply toward the minor.

arrow View the catalog page for the comparative literature program.  

Literary translation is an essential human activity, necessary and central to almost every world culture. It is a complex activity that both invites and defies the grasp of many disciplines, including among others computer science, linguistics, philosophy, politics, economics, sociology, and cultural history. For all Oberlin students who are interested in international careers and fields of study, courses in languages, literatures, and translation are increasingly essential. The minor in literary translation draws on Oberlin’s strengths in many areas and is thus inherently interdisciplinary, as befits the institution’s liberal arts philosophy. The literary translation minor can be completed by any student with any major, though the minor itself may not substitute for a major or minor in comparative literature.

Note(s) on Requirements

  • The advanced foreign literature course must be taught in a language other than English. For certain languages, the minimum course level is 300, while for other languages the minimum level is 400; see detailed requirement below.
  • A course cannot count for more than one requirement.
  • Many LxC courses appear as a half course (two credits) with a linked full course (four credits). Students who take both sections of such courses may count both in the category of advanced translation courses, for a total of one and one-half courses. Students who take only the two-credit LxC course may count only one-half course towards the requirement.

Course of Study

Oberlin students minoring in literary translation will study the history and theory of literary translation, analyze specific cases and practical problems, and develop their own extended translation projects. As they gain in-depth knowledge of foreign languages, as well as of the many contexts that shape the production of literature in those languages, students will learn to negotiate different perspectives while remaining mindful of cultural, social, political, and linguistic implications in both the original languages and in English. As a result, students will develop their own informed and theory-based approach to translating works from one or more literary genres (such as poetry, prose, drama) and will complete a literary translation project as their capstone for the minor.

Students interested in pursuing a minor in literary translation are encouraged to consult with a faculty member in the comparative literature program.

Detailed Minor Requirements

Literary Translation Minor Course Lists

Advanced Foreign Literature Courses

Return to the summary of requirements.

Note: Students must take at least one 400-level literature course in a foreign language taught in a language other than English. For the following four languages, the required minimum level is 300: Greek, Latin, Chinese, or Japanese.

Capstone Course

Return to the summary of requirements.

A capstone (or Honors) project focusing on translation in any department is required. A faculty member from any department with experience in translation should be first or second reader for the project.