What Is the Transnational Turn in American Literary Studies? A Critical Overview

  • Isabel Durán Universidad Complutense de Madrid


This article presents a critical overview of the state of the art of transnational American studies in the wake of the so-called transnational turn. After an introduction to key ideas and concepts surrounding transnationalism as applied to American studies and, more particularly, to literary studies—including comparative and international approaches to American literature—I interweave critical arguments with brief reviews of keypublications—monographs, edited collections and individual essays—produced in the US and abroad—particularly Spain—in the twenty-first century. My overview mainly focuses on general literary studies, but it also tackles particular areas such as gender, ethnicity, aesthetics and political transnationalism. My conclusion suggests that the transnational turn will continue to shape our scholarship in the decades to come.

Author Biography

Isabel Durán, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Isabel Durán is Professor of US Literature at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). Her publication record on gender studies, (transnational) literature, autobiography and ethnicity includes the edition of an eight-volume gender studies collection, in addition to more than seventy articles and book chapters. She is the Director of the UCM Research Group “Gender Studies in the Anglophone World.”


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