Founded by Roy Temple House in 1927 as Books Abroad. The first issued published was a mere thirty-two pages (January 1927), however by the end of the periodical's fiftieth year it had grown to over 250 pages (Autumn 1976).

In January of 1977 the journal was officially renamed to World Literature Today in order to accurately reflect the international range it had acquired. Now in its 77th uninterrupted year of publication, World Literature Today is the second-oldest such literary periodical in the United States. World Literature Today is published out of the University of Oklahoma.


The logo of World Literature Today is a crest bearing a full-rigged ship sailing away from the setting sun. A banner displays the letters WLT above the crest and both the motto, "Lux a Peregre" - Light from Abroad, and the year the journal was founded.


World Literature Today contains interviews with authors, original poetry and fiction from around the world, essays on authors and regional trends, articles by authors on books that changed their lives, and coverage of world-wide confrences. Each issue also includes sections dedicated to reviews of new books broken down by language (i.e. French, Slavic etc.).

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