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The Development Novel: World Literature and the Political Economy of Growth

December 11, 2017 @ 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Portrait image of Peter Ribic wearing a navy blue shirt and glasses and standing outside

Monday Seminar:

Peter Ribic

Dana-Allen Dissertation Fellow (2017-2018)

English, UW-Madison


My dissertation research connects two genres of global writing that emerged in the immediate postwar period: development economics, which undertook to theorize and facilitate the transition from “traditional” to “modern” economies in the recently discovered “Third World”; and the postcolonial bildungsroman, which uses the coming-of-age plot to stage broader economic, political, and cultural transformations in countries that have suffered the experience of colonialism and imperialism. In this talk, I will survey the narrative politics that cohered in and around these two genres of growth during the Cold War and consider the implications of what I call “the development novel” for recent debates in postcolonial and world literature studies.


Peter Ribic is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of English at UW-Madison. His research focuses on the twentieth- and twenty-first-century global Anglophone novel, literature and the social sciences, postcolonial theory, and world literature studies. Ribic has taught courses in modern literature and composition at Stockholm University and UW-Madison. His research has been supported by the Departments of English at Stockholm University and UW-Madison and the UW-Madison Graduate School. He is currently completing his dissertation, “The Development Novel: World Literature and the Political Economy of Growth.”


December 11, 2017
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
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University Club, Room 212
432 East Campus Mall
Madison, Wisconsin 53703 United States