The aim of the INTER/TRANSCULTURALITIES research group is to study literary constructions of OTHERNESS, taking the concepts of DIALOGISM, TRANSCULTURALITY, BORDER CROSSING, CENTRE and MARGIN as points of departure. Otherness is a condition for the construction of identity, implying dislocation, inclusion and exclusion – and also memory and oblivion. We seek to explore cultural imaginaries of a plural Europe through a dialogue between literary representations and other social and artistic discourses. We deploy critical tools from different fields in the Social Sciences and the Humanities, taking into account wide-ranging cultural perspectives, which include the points of view of literature and aesthetics, with the intent of helping to redefine cultural policies.

Considering that some of the processes causing a redefinition of cultural imaginaries are mechanisms of inter-and transcultural hybridization, as well as new ways of thinking and means of artistic and literary expression, the group also intends to explore concepts such as PERIPHERY, BORDER and INCLUSION.

Thus, the group works on displacement and migration of peoples, which therefore implies human lives, taking literature as a means to question contemporary societies. We focus on different themes and fields, such as: migrations and exile studies; postcolonial studies; travel studies; translation studies; theatre and theatricalities; crime literature.


  • studying translation dynamics and related acts of mediation, as well as the critical function of literary, philosophical and cultural texts which show alternative perspectives of Europe in a globalised world;
  • offering concrete proposals for planning culturally inclusive societies by way of drawing cultural policies, together with other academic and teaching institutions and cultural agents, such as universities, schools, city halls, museums;
  • highlighting the construction of spatial identities, through literary and artistic modalities of social phenomena that structure today’s Europe, like travel, migrations and exile;
  • • broadening the scope of the databases Ulyssei@s, Europe Facing Europe, and Passagen.

Research questions

  • How does literature build and/or reflect critical thinking and discourses about Europe and about the global multilingual and multicultural world?
  • How does literature (and the other arts) contribute to the preservation of the European cultural heritage (myths, ideas, utopias) and to the renewal of its imaginary, as a way of resisting uniformity, as well as connecting the local with the global?
  • • What is the role of geographical and social spatiality in the construction of both individual and collective identities in an open Europe and in a global world? What is the importance of border crossing, of being in transit, and of the social and cultural integration of migrants? What is the role of memory when taking these issues into account?
  • • How do/did authors (and readers) map their world in fictional settings? How do they transform space into heterotopic or dystopic possible worlds, setting a dialogue between reality, fiction, and, in what concerns the reader, between text and reality?

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