Student Advisory Board
of Comparative Literature


The Student Advisory Board of Comparative Literature and the Department of Comparative Literature foster an engaging academic community by organizing several colloquia activities throughout the year. These events enable graduate students to present their research and then discuss their projects in a Q & A session. The Dept. of Comparative Literature and the Student Advisory Board co-sponsor two significant colloquium series during the academic year: The Ilinca Zarifopol Johnston Memorial Colloquium and the C. Clifford Flanigan Memorial Colloquium. The paragraphs below provide additional information regarding these events, and throughout the year, the Student Advisory Board will post further announcements about deadlines and requirements. 

The Ilinca Zarifopol Johnston Memorial Colloquium

The Student Advisory Board of Comparative Literature is pleased to coordinate a new colloquium series, which is named in honor of our beloved professor, Ilinca Zarifopol Johnston (1952-2005).

Through this colloquium, we celebrate the life, scholarship and teaching of Prof. Zarifopol Johnston.  She published and taught about questions of exile in literature, the genre of parody, the novel, practices of translation, and more.  She is remembered for writing articles and reviews such as, "'Ceci tuera cela': The Cathedral in he Marketplace" and "Notre Dame de Paris: The Cathedral in the Book" in Nineteenth Century French Studies.  At the same time, Prof. Zarifopol Johnston is known for her insightful book To Kill a Text: The Dialogic Fiction of Hugo, Dickens and Zola, which was published with the University of Delaware Press (1995). 

Professor Zarifopol Johnston was also an accomplished translator and scholar of translation studies; most significantly, she studied the works of the French-Romanian philosophical essayist, E.M. Cioran.  She translated and published Cioran's On the Heights of Despair (1992) and Tears and Saints (1996) with the University of Chicago Press.  In light of her many achievements, we hope that the Ilinca Zarifopol Johnston colloquium will serve as a good forum for intellectual dialogue and engagement with colleagues. We would like to see many people attend these sessions, whether as presenters or audience members.

We envision the Ilinca Zarifopol Johnston Memorial Colloquium as four loosely-themed sessions spanning the year. Three panelists will present their work at each session, which will be chaired by departmental faculty who share the interests of student presenters. Panelists will have 20 minutes to present their work and we therefore ask students to limit their papers to ten pages. Presentations will be followed by a formal question-and-answer period and, hopefully, more informal discussion as we continue to socialize.

The final colloquium session, in March, will be the annual C. Clifford Flanigan Memorial Colloquium, which carries the Flanigan prize. The prize-winner will be determined by the panel of faculty judges who attend the final session, based on hard copies of the papers and the presentations themselves. Students may present in both the Johnston and the Flanigan Colloquium if their work is selected for both; however, students may not present the same paper for any two sessions.

The themes of the first three sessions have been determined by the particular strengths of our department. The theme of the fourth will be determined by a majority of submissions. The Flanigan Colloquium is determined solely on the quality of submissions and does not have an appointed theme. However, all of the submissions must consist of one of the following scholarly approaches: a comparison, a translation, or interdisciplinary work.

The 2006-2007 schedule is as follows:

  • Friday, October 27: Inter-arts Studies, 3-5 p.m.
  • Friday, November 17: Inter-cultural and Cross-cultural approaches, 3-5 p.m.
  • Friday, January 26: Translation 3-5 p.m.
  • Friday, February 23: TBD by submissions 3-5 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 24: C. Clifford Flanigan 2-4 p.m.

We invite submissions of abstracts of 250-500 words.These submissions should be sent electronically to our e-mail account (listed below). Please write Johnston Colloquium Submission in the subject of your e-mail. We ask you to remember that our aim is to foster opportunities for student presentations and community interaction. We therefore encourage the presentation of revised seminar or conference papers, sections from M.A. theses or dissertations, or other work that represents your particular research interests. Topics for inter-arts might include research in music and literature, visual art, photography, film, or performance art. Inter-cultural and cross-cultural approaches might include East-West relations, gender and sexuality in world literature, post-colonialism, or transnationalism. If you have suggestions or comments, please do not hesitate to e-mail our organization. We are very much looking forward to an exciting colloquium series!

The C. Clifford Flanigan Memorial Colloquium

In 1995, the friends of C. Clifford Flanigan established a departmental colloquium and essay prize in his memory.  C. Clifford Flanigan (1941-1993) began teaching in the Dept. of Comparative Literature at Indiana University in 1973.  He was the Department's main specialist in drama and medieval studies and a distinguished member of the Institute for Medieval Studies. Prof. Flanigan published and taught about approaches to liturgical drama, the writings of Mikhail Bakhtin, and English, French and Latin literatures. Prof. Flanigan published numerous articles and reviews, such as "The Fleury Playbook and the Traditions of Medieval Latin Drama" in Comparative Drama and "The Roman Rite and the Origins of the Liturgical Drama" in the University of Toronto Quarterly: A Canadian Journal of the Humanities.     

To honor C. Clifford Flanigan's life and work, the Student Advisory Board of Comparative Literature organizes a colloquium where the department's graduate students present their best research.  This event is typically held in late March of each year. All Comparative Literature graduate students are encouraged to submit completed papers for consideration.  There is no formal topic for the colloquium; however, a presentation must use one of the following approaches: comparison, interdisciplinary work or translation.  In addition, this colloquium is a competition and it will consist of just three presenters. The Comparative Literature faculty will choose the three presenters from the students' submissions and then announce a winner after the colloquium. A reception will follow the event, and refreshments will be served. Please contact the Student Advisory Board of Comparative Literature if you have any further questions.   

For further information, please contact us at:

Student Advisory Board
Dept. of Comparative Literature
Indiana University
1020 E. Kirkwood Ave.
Ballantine Hall 914
Bloomington, IN 47405-7103

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This page is maintained by the Student Advisory Board of Comparative Literature and Yi Sun.
Last updated: 12 February 2007.