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Milica Labaš

Doctoral Fellow


Campus Am Neuen Palais
Am Neuen Palais 10
Building 1, Room 0.15
14469 Potsdam


by appointment only

Dissertation Project

Name Misleading, Address Unknown:
World-Literature Between Literary Communism and Nobody Particular

The project is situated at the intersection of literary theory, political philosophy and aesthetics, exploring the relationship between literature and community in its radical forms and elaborating an idea of world-literature on a new conceptual basis. It critically assesses a number of the prominent positions that mark the recent Anglophone debates on "world literature" because it is around and within this resurgent paradigm that the question of the place of literature in the global situation is being reconsidered today. Rather than defending any definition of world literature, this systematic inquiry considers alternative aesthetic-political frameworks for situating literature within the “worldly“ or rather the “common” in a specific sense, setting a foundation for a different poetics of community. Drawing on contemporary continental philosophy, I develop theoretical possibilities that are here argued to offer an alternative genealogy of (a) minor (literary) cosmopolitanism. Simultaneously, the dissertation is oriented by a reading of literary works that can be said to expose new possibilities for conceptualizing literary community in their own right. I thus read José Saramago, Rana Dasgupta and Radmila Lazić in an attempt to rearticulate and potentially answer the question as to how literature may challenge or subvert the pre-given notions of what it means to think “we” by the very structure of its address.


I obtained my undergraduate degree in Humanities, the Arts and Social Thought from Bard College Berlin, with the first major in Ethics and Politics and the second in Art and Aesthetics. I then completed my MA in Anglophone Modernities in Literature and Culture at the University of Potsdam. Reflecting my interdisciplinary academic background, my research is prompted by the ongoing engagement with the questions of the relationship between theory and practice, the space of conflict between philosophy and art and the distance between the state and the emancipatory. I am currently a PhD fellow with the DFG-funded Research Training Group Minor Cosmopolitanisms at the University of Potsdam.

Research Interests

  • continental philosophy
  • cultural theory
  • literature
  • forced migration studies
  • decolonial theory