Thomas McDonald

Thomas McDonald

Ph.D. Student in Comparative Literature, admitted Autumn 2016
Ph.D. Minor, German Studies
2014: M.B.A., International Business, University of South Carolina
2013: Vienna University of Economics and Business
2007: Sophia University, Tokyo
2007: B.A., Comparative Literature, University of South Carolina Honors College

I research modern and contemporary German-, South Slavic-, and Japanese-language literature and film.

My dissertation compares the transcultural writings of Austrian-Slovene writer Peter Handke and Japanese-Korean writer I Yanji (Lee Yangji) in the context of the cultural and political-economic precarity of 1980s Yugoslavia and South Korea.

My next project will incorporate Italian-language literature into this schema.


Research Areas:

  • Comparative East-West Peripheries, esp. Japan-Korea and Austria-former Yugoslavia
  • Transcultural Aesthetics and Politics in Literature and Film
  • Cultural contact and syncretism, esp. in Latin America and Southeast Europe


  • Conceptions of ‘Repetition’ in Post-Yugoslav Slovene Literature and Film.” Slovene Studies: Journal of the Society for Slovene Studies.  43.2 (2021): 109-31
  • Place-Writing Before the Storm: Space and Place as Dimensions of Complexity in Peter Handke’s pre-1990s Work as a Preface to the Yugoslav Polemics.” Nach dem Nobelpreis: Der Jugoslawien-Komplex in Peter Handkes Werk.  Königshausen & Neumann, 2022: 231-43

Teaching Areas:

  • Comparative literature, film, philosophy
  • Modern Japanese, German, former Yugoslav literature, film, culture


  • Three Essays on Slovene Independence:
    - Milan Kundera, "Slovenia Needs to Be Saved" ("Il faut sauver la Slovénie")
    - Peter Handke, "The Dreamer's Farewell to the Ninth Country" (Abschied des Träumers vom Neunten Land, 1991)
    - Drago Jančar, "Report from the Ninth Country" (Poročilo iz devete dežele, 1991)
  • Adolfo Costa du Rels "La Miskki-Simi" (El traje del arlequín, 1921)
  • Dimitri Analis "A Wall of Light" ("Un mur de lumière", Pays Exclusif, 1990) 

Memberships/affiliations include  Society for Slovene Studies,  American Slovene Education Foundation, Slovenian Academy of Arts and Sciences,  German Economics Institute Cologne, the first Polyglot Conference (Budapest, Hungary 2013); Fonbec USA Inc (board member, 2020- pres).