Doctoral Research Fellowship in Comparative Literature


A Doctoral Research Fellowship (SKO 1017) in Comparative Literature is available at the Department of Literature, Area Studies and European Languages, University of Oslo.

The doctoral fellow will work on border poetics and especially the way in which textual and epistemological boundaries are constituted in literary texts. The doctoral fellow will be approaching a specific type of literary material in order to find out how textual boundaries and borders within storyworlds interact and thus regulate readers’ crossings into texts. The literary material could be taken from postcolonial literature, migration literature, science fiction, travel writing (including literary expedition accounts), realist, modernist or postmodernist fiction. The focus should be on a specific kind of textual boundary, such as paratexts, beginnings, endings, textual divisions and frames, shifts in style, language, narrative voice, perspective, temporality, understanding, plot, or theme, or combinations of these.

The person appointed can build on narratological, stylistic or cognitive approaches to literature, or combinations of these, along with border poetics analysis. The doctoral fellow will be part of a research initiative in border poetics under development at the department, with strong ties to international interdisciplinary centres of border research and plans for major project applications.

Depending on the theme and approach of their project, the person will also be encouraged to join one or several relevant research groups at the department (see, as well as the research/education initiative “Literature, Cognition and Emotion”. The doctoral fellow will be provided with a main supervisor, Professor Johan Schimanski

Expected start date: 1 September 2021

More about the position

The person appointed will be affiliated with the Faculty’s organized research training. The academic work is to result in a doctoral thesis that will be defended at the Faculty with a view to obtaining the degree of PhD. The successful candidate is expected to join the existing research milieu or network and contribute to its development. Read more about the doctoral degree.

The appointment is for a duration of 3 years. All PhD Candidates who submit their doctoral dissertation for assessment with a written recommendation from their supervisor within 3 years or 3 ½ years after the start of their PhD position, will be offered, respectively, a 12 or 6 month Completion Grant.

Qualification requirements

  • A Master’s degree or equivalent in Comparative Literature or another relevant discipline. The Master’s degree must have been obtained and the final evaluation must be available by the application deadline.
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English.
  • Personal suitability and motivation for the position.

To be eligible for admission to the doctoral programmes at the University of Oslo, applicants must, as a minimum, have completed a five-year graduation course (Master’s degree or equivalent), including a Master’s thesis of at least 30 ECTS. In special cases, the Faculty may grant admission on the basis of a one-year Master course following an assessment of the study programme’s scope and quality.

Further qualifications

In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on:

  • The project’s scientific merit, research-related relevance and innovation
  • The applicant’s estimated academic and personal ability to complete the project within the time frame
  • The applicant’s ability to complete research training
  • Good collaboration skills and an ability to join interdisciplinary academic communities

Applicants who have recently graduated with excellent results may be given preference.

We offer

How to apply

The application must include:

  • Application letter describing the applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the position
  • Curriculum Vitae (with a list of education, positions, teaching experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activities, including a complete list of publications)
  • Transcript of records of your Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. Applicants with education from a foreign university must attach an explanation of their university’s grading system
  • Project description, including a detailed progress plan for the project (3 – 5 pages, see Template for project descriptions)

Please note that all documents must be in English or a Scandinavian language.

Educational certificates, master theses and the like are not to be submitted with the application, but applicants may be asked to submit such information or works later.

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, please follow the link “apply for this job”.

Short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview.

Formal regulations

See also regulations as well as guidelines for the application assessment process and appointments to research fellowships.

Following the Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) § 25, Chapter 2, demographic information about the applicant may be used in the public list of applicants even if the applicant opts out from the entry in the public application list.

No one can be appointed for more than one PhD Research Fellowship period at the University of Oslo.

The University of Oslo has an Acquisition of Rights Agreement for the purpose of securing rights to intellectual property created by its employees, including research results.

The University of Oslo aims to achieve a balanced gender composition in the workforce and to recruit people with ethnic minority backgrounds.

Contact information

Professor Johan Schimanski (e-mail)

Head of Administration Karina Kleiva (e-mail)

HR Adviser Evian Nordstrand (for questions on electronic application)

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