Literature at Krea

Central to Krea’s vision is a student who learns to read deeply and is sensitive to both contexts and histories that are immediate and local, and those that are further removed in time and place. The Krea literature major will read texts in Englishes past and present, explore contemporary literatures in global Englishes, and think through the aesthetics and politics of literatures in translation, what these literatures bring to readers of English and other languages. Majors will also engage with the role of technology in the rapid evolution of literary forms, including new technologies and media in the digital arts and humanities, a fast-growing area of interwoven learning spanning creative and critical thinking.

The Approach

The curriculum will highlight spaces for conceptual intersections, pathways criss-crossing different literary genres and cultures, as well as movements and practices in the arts, sciences, and social sciences. The major will nurture intense engagement with reading and learning how to write in different academic and creative genres as students think about the ethical issues that confront those who write – in the classroom and beyond. Students will graduate with the tools to read different types of texts, the ability to research the historical, social, political, and theoretical contexts to help analyse texts, and the skills to communicate their analyses in well-written, articulate, and eloquent responses. Immersive experiences will include meeting writers, entrepreneurs, administrators; engaging with publishers, editors, journalists and bookmakers at work; and opportunities to train and work as peer tutors and research assistants.

Required literature courses will develop skills in reading comprehension and literary analysis in the broad genres of poetry, fiction and non-fiction prose, and drama. These courses will introduce students to the forms and methods of literary analysis as they learn the basic vocabulary of literary theory and criticism. For instance, a course on formal poetry may well include poetic forms that emerged in medieval Afghanistan, renaissance Europe, and seventeenth-century Japan in languages other than English but are now popular contemporary forms of English poetry.

Electives will offer students the opportunity to explore special topics, authors, and genres in greater depth and at more advanced levels of reading and writing. Cross-listed and cognate courses will give students the option to take some relevant courses of interest that are offered by other divisions of the university. The electives will reflect the specializations of the Krea faculty. The capstone thesis will be both a test and showcase of a student’s training. Students will choose a topic of their interest, learn to formulate the research problem, do the relevant research, and produce a thesis that is both a culmination of everything they have learned and a stepping stone to their next venture.

Programme Details

Required Courses

Possible electives

  • Literary Method: “Interpretive Methods in Literary Studies and the Arts”
  • Literary Genre 1: “Theatre, Text, Performance”
  • Literary Genre 2: “The Contemporary Novel”
  • Translation: “Translation, Theory and Practice”
  • Literary Movement(s): “Postcolonial Literary Studies”/ “Literatures of South Asia” / “Modernism across Cultures” / “Magic Realism” / “Bhakti Poetry”
  • Creative Writing: “Five Forms of Poetry” / “Screen Writing” / “Short Fiction” / Memoir
  • Technologies of Writing and New Media
  • What Makes a Literary Canon? What Breaks It?
  • In-depth topics courses: “Literatures of Exile and Migration” / “History of English Language”
  • In-depth author courses: “Shakespeare’s Comedies” / “Chaucer” / “Perumal Murugan” / “L. Carroll” / “Shakespeare and Joyce” / “Marquez and Rushdie” /
  • In-depth period courses: “Premodern Literatures” / “Romantic Poetry” / “The Victorian Novel”
  • Intersections Courses: “Psychoanalysis and Literature” / “Gender and Literature” / “Environment and Literature” / “Science and Literature” / “Human Rights and Literature”
  • Interdisciplinary courses from another divisions: (Arts / Cinema / History / Anthropology esp on Writing Ethnographies, History of Science”)

Akhila Ramnarayan

Divisional Chair, Literature & the Arts
Associate Professor of Practice
Cultural Program Curator

Akhila Ramnarayan

Divisional Chair, Literature & the Arts
Associate Professor of Practice
Cultural Program Curator

PhD, The Ohio State University

Anil Srinivasan

Associate Professor of Practice
Literature & the Arts

Anil Srinivasan

Associate Professor of Practice
Literature & the Arts

MPhil, Columbia University

Hariharan Krishnan

Professor of Practice
Literature & the Arts
Director, Media Lab

Hariharan Krishnan

Professor of Practice
Literature & the Arts
Director, Media Lab

Diploma in Film Direction, TV in Film & TV Institute of India

Srajana Kaikini

Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Humanities & Social Sciences and Literature & the Arts

Srajana Kaikini

Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Humanities & Social Sciences and Literature & the Arts

PhD, Manipal University

Sumitra Ranganathan

Senior Assistant Professor of Music
Literature & the Arts and Humanities & Social Sciences

Sumitra Ranganathan

Senior Assistant Professor of Music
Literature & the Arts and Humanities & Social Sciences

PhD, University of California, Berkeley

Swarnamalya Ganesh

Assistant Professor of Practice

Swarnamalya Ganesh

Assistant Professor of Practice

PhD, University of Madras

The Krea literature graduate will challenge the frequently asked question, “what can you do with a major in literature” to “what can you not?” They will have the broad skills, work ethic, and curiosity to pursue careers in several domains including education (including teaching), postgraduate study in literature and allied disciplines, law, medicine, government, nonprofit and for-profit start-up ventures, arts and entertainment, health/finance, journalism, advertising/marketing, publishing, human resources, and information technology. They will meet the world as interested, discerning, empathetic, helpful and entrepreneurial individuals who are dynamic, adaptive, and resilient in their personal and professional lives

Job Roles Organizations
  • Social media manager
  • PR manager
  • Technical writer
  • Legal writer
  • Research Grant writer
  • Content manager
  • Communications manager
  • Arts policy manager
  • Library manager
  • Teacher
  • Interpreter
  • Digital marketing agency
  • Corporate Communications department
  • Public Relations firm
  • Law firm
  • Funding organisation (CSR)
  • Publishing house
  • Education organisation
  • Foreign embassy / mission
  • Digital media organisation
  • Advertising firm
  • Market research agency