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School of Languages, Linguistics and Film

Galin Tihanov, PhD (Sofia), DPhil (Oxon); FBA, MAE


George Steiner Professor of Comparative Literature

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 5912
Room Number: Arts One 1.18
Office Hours: By appointment, in person or online.


Galin Tihanov is the George Steiner Professor of Comparative Literature at Queen Mary University of London. He has held visiting professorships at universities in Europe, North and South America, and Asia. He is the author of six books, including The Birth and Death of Literary Theory: Regimes of Relevance in Russia and Beyond (Stanford UP, 2019) which won the 2020 AATSEEL Prize for “best book in literary studies”. Tihanov has been elected to the British Academy (2021) and to Academia Europaea (2012). He serves on the Executive Board of the Institute for World Literature at Harvard University and as Honorary Scientific Advisor to the Institute of Foreign Literatures, CASS, Beijing; he is also Past President of the ICLA Committee on Literary Theory. His current work is on world literature, cosmopolitanism, and exile.  

World Literature as a Construct: Spaces of Dissent

'World Literature' in Soviet Russia

Two Types of Cosmopolitanism

On Migration, Exile, and the Resistance to Theory

On World Literature, Exile and Cosmopolitanism: An Interview with Professor Galin Tihanov [PDF 1,470KB]


Research Interests:

Comparative Literature and Cultural History, esp. Russian, German, and Central- and East-European Culture and Thought (19th-20th c.) and German, Russian, Bulgarian and Polish literatures in their relation to intellectual and cultural history (19th-20th c.); Intellectual History; World Literature; Continental, British, and American Literary and Cultural Theory; Cosmopolitanism and its Genealogies; Exile and Migration (esp. 20th century Central- and East-European exile); Construction of European Identities; Marxism and Post-Marxism; Mikhail Bakhtin; Olga Freidenberg; The Russian Formalists; Gustav Shpet; Boris Yarkho; Osip Mandelstam; Boris Porshnev; German Post-Romanticism; German Conservatism (esp. 20th century); May ’68; Goethe; Dilthey; Simmel; Heidegger; Carl Schmitt; Oswald Spengler; Ernst Jünger; Robert Musil; Hermann Broch; Elias Canetti; Heiner Müller; Alexandre Kojève; Russian avant-garde visual culture. I have also chaired research grants evaluation panels at the European Research Council (SH5, Advanced Grants) and the Polish National Science Centre (Humanities and Social Sciences, Maestro and Sonata Bis Grants). 

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