Research Programs: Summer Stipends

Period of Performance

7/1/2015 - 8/31/2015

Funding Totals

$6,000.00 (approved)
$6,000.00 (awarded)

Disoriented Disciplines China, Latin America, and the Shape of World Literature

FAIN: FT-229137-15

Maria del Rosario Hubert
Trinity College (Hartford, CT 06106-3100)

Summer research and writing on Comparative Literature and East Asian and Latin American Studies.

My book project Disorientations: Latin American Fictions of East Asia explores the relationship between fiction, knowledge and knowing in Latin American discourses of China and Japan. By scrutinizing Brazilian and Hispanic American travel journals, novels, short stories and essays from the nineteenth century to the present, Disorientations engages with the epistemological problems of writing across cultural boundaries. The argument is divided into four chapters that create a constellation of historical and textual problems around a specific form of knowledge (ethnography, philology and fiction) and proposes a novel entryway into the study of East Asia and Latin American through the notions of cultural distance, fictional Sinology and critical exoticism. Disorientation is a rhetoric that not only revisits the hegemonic archive of the Orient from a Latin American point of view, but mostly, explores the literary potential of peripheral epistemologies in general.

Associated Products

Disoriented Disciplines China, Latin America, and the Shape of World Literature (Book)
Title: Disoriented Disciplines China, Latin America, and the Shape of World Literature
Author: Rosario Hubert
Abstract: An urgent call to think on the edges, surfaces, and turns of the literary artifact when it crosses cultural boundaries In the absence of specialized programs of study, abstract discussions of China in Latin America took shape in contingent critical infrastructures built at the crossroads of the literary market, cultural diplomacy, and commerce. As Rosario Hubert reveals, modernism flourishes comparatively, in contexts where cultural criticism is a creative and cosmopolitan practice. Disoriented Disciplines:China, Latin America, and the Shape of World Literature understands translation as a material act of transfer, decentering the authority of the text and connecting seemingly untranslatable cultural traditions. In this book, chinoiserie, “coolie” testimonies, Maoist prints, visual poetry, and Cold War memoirs compose a massive archive of primary sources that cannot be read or deciphered with the conventional tools of literary criticism. As Hubert demonstrates, even canonical Latin American authors, including Jorge Luis Borges, Octavio Paz, and Haroldo de Campos, write about China from the edges of philology, mediating the concrete as well as the sensorial. Advocating for indiscipline as a core method of comparative literary studies, Disoriented Disciplines challenges us to interrogate the traditional contours of the archives and approaches that define the geopolitics of knowledge.
Year: 2023
Primary URL:
Secondary URL:
Secondary URL Description: FULL PDF of the book available at the FlashPoints series open access platform
Publisher: Northwestern University Press
Type: Single author monograph