Dr. Carlos Ceia is Full Professor of English Studies at the Department of Modern Languages, Cultures and Literatures, Faculty of Human and Social Sciences, New University of Lisbon – Portugal, where he teaches Literary Theory, English Contemporary Literature and Portuguese and Foreign Languages Teaching. He is head and founder of the Language Institute of the New University of Lisbon (ILNOVA). He is senior researcher at the Centre for English, Translation and Anglo-Portuguese Studies.2003 0-7734-7008-52013 0-7734-4540-4
After a first comprehensive revision of the meaning of professionalism in literary studies today, both at universities and in other places where literature is being taught, written and reviewed, I deal with particular problems that are affecting literary studies today. I look at how they are developed in academic curriculum, how they are being studied and taught in all levels of education, how they copy with the primacy of other core disciplines, and what are its possible futures in the humanities. Main topics include, trends of the literature teacher’s professionalism, the way he or she drills literary taste, the question of standards in literary studies and how they affects professionalism and teaching methods, the place for literary history and the inseparability of language and literature teaching. The true role of the teacher of literature today will be discussed in several ways. I will assume that he or she involves an anti-essentialist method of teaching, opens to a kind of canon formation that is flexible and adjustable to the public’s interest, understands the literary traditions relating to other forms of knowledge such as natural law, and uses the power of literary reading against external resistance to the benefits and usefulness of literature.