Elsje Fourie awarded NWO SSH XS grant

Elsje Fourie received €50,000 in the NWO SSH XS funding scheme for the project ‘Global Novels, Global Readers? Imagining transnational communities along the circuits of global literary consumption’. In the project, Elsje will explore how book clubs around the world read and respond to globally "successful" novels.

In the era of late capitalist globalisation, novels are not only works of art but also commodities that are consumed by readers around the world. Does the rise of the ‘global novel’ create readers capable of greater understanding and solidarity towards those in distant locations? Or do the kinds of books that ‘go global’ merely end up reinforcing readers’ existing prejudices? This interdisciplinary study examines the responses of readers in four countries to four global novels, thereby contributing both to literary debates around the evolution of this emerging genre and to social science debates around the impact of cultural globalisation.

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