j. hillis miller
I gratefully acknowledge all those who have helped me in the preparation
of my part of this book, especially, of course, my coauthor in the proj-
ect, Ranjan Ghosh, as well as those students and faculty in vari ous places
around the world who have listened to earlier versions of material in this
book and have asked helpful questions and made helpful comments that
have aided me in revision and re orientation. I thank also all those at Duke
University Press who have been so efficient and generous.
Several sections of my part of this book have already appeared in early
forms in journals or books, or were given as lectures, and have recently
been collected in An Innocent Abroad: Lectures in China. All these segments
have been elaborately revised and re oriented for this book to become part
of my international dialogue with Ranjan Ghosh about vari ous aspects of
reading, writing about, and teaching lit er a ture today. I have also revised
them to fit my current convictions about lit er a ture.
An earlier version of some parts of chapter  2 has appeared in chap-
ter 15 in An Innocent Abroad: Lectures in China. The first version of the essay
was a lecture titled “National Lit er a tures in the Context of World Lit er a-
ture Today,” presented first at Tsing hua University and again at Peking
University during a visit to Beijing, September 10–12, 2012. In a dif er ent
and longer form, the lecture was published as “Lit er a ture Matters Today,”
in Does Lit er a ture Matter? , a special issue of SubStance, edited by Ranjan
Ghosh, SubStance 42, no. 2 (2013), 12–32. I am grateful to Professor Ghosh
for agreeing to a translation of my essay into Chinese, and to the essay’s
adaptation and revision for this book. A translation into Chinese, by Xi-
alin Ding, of the first half of “Lit er a ture Matters Today” appeared in Bei-
jing University’s Guo wai wen xue (Foreign lit er a ture) 2 (2013): 3–8.
An earlier version of some parts of chapter 6 has appeared in chapter 12
of An Innocent Abroad: Lectures in China. The earliest version of those
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