Taylor Building A34 King's College University of Aberdeen Aberdeen AB24 3UB
My undergraduate and postgraduate studies were at the University of Oxford. I graduated from Keble College, Oxford, with an MA in Modern Languages (French and Linguistics) in 1995. After a year studying for an MSt in Research Methods, I was awarded my DPhil on the novelist and writer François Mauriac in February 2000. I was a Laming Junior Fellow at Queen's College, Oxford between 1999 and 2001, before joining Durham University as Lecturer in French in September 2001. I took up the Carnegie Chair of French at the University of Aberdeen in September 2013. I have been Head of the School of Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture (January 2016-August 2019), and Director of GWW, the George Washington Wilson Centre for Visual Culture, which is based in the School (September 2013-January 2016).
Memberships and Affiliations
- Internal Memberships
Head of School, School of Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture (January 2016-August 2019)
Deputy Head of School, School of Language and Literature (September 2013-January 2016)
Director, Washington Wilson Centre for Visual Culture (September 2013-January 2016)
- External Memberships
Honorary Secretary, Society for French Studies (since July 2019)
Member of the Executive Committee of the Society for French Studies (since July 2013)
Member of the AHRC Peer Review College
Build The Imaginary: Urban Futures and New Towns in Post-war French Spatial PlanningJournal of Urban Cultural Studies, vol. 8, no. 2, pp. 167-186Contributions to Journals: Articles
'Match nous a raconté une histoire': Thinking with Roland Barthes about Photography, Publics and the Exercise of Power in Post-war FrancePhotography and Its Publics. Miles, M., Welch, E. (eds.). Bloomsbury Academic, pp. 63-78, 16 pagesChapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters (Peer-Reviewed)
Photography and Its PublicsBloomsbury Academic, London. 288 pagesBooks and Reports: Books
Angels of History: Looking Back at Spatial Planning in the Mission photographique de la DATARFrance in Flux. Welch, E., Blatt, A. (eds.). Liverpool University Press, pp. 13-34, 21 pagesChapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters
France in Flux: Space, Territory and Contemporary CultureLiverpool University Press, Liverpool. 221 pagesBooks and Reports: Books
My research focuses especially on the cultural history of post-war France, as it lives through the twin dramas of modernisation and decolonisation. I explore how literary and visual culture articulates, echoes and represents those dramas, and the role played by cultural production in the broader economy of France during the period. In the past few years, my work has turned increasingly to the nature of the photographic image and its role as part of a visual economy of meaning. My first book focused on the novelist and writer François Mauriac, and his emergence as an intellectual and figure of moral authority during the 1950s and 60s. Working with Dr Joe McGonagle (University of Manchester), I completed an AHRC-funded project in 2011 investigating the representation of the Franco-Algerian relationship from the time of French Algeria to the present day. As part of the project, we curated the exhibition New Cartographies: Algeria-France-UK at Cornerhouse in Manchester. Our book, Contesting Views: The Visual Economy of France and Algeria, was published by Liverpool University Press in May 2013.
I am currently accepting PhDs in French.
Please get in touch if you would like to discuss your research ideas further.
- French Studies
- French Literature
- French Society and Culture
- Cultural Studies
My current work pursues a long-standing interest in spatial planning, urban space and modernisation in post-war France. I am working in particular on the state-led planning and modernisation of the Gaullist and post-Gaullist eras, and the ways in which space was produced and reconfigured as a result. I have explored how a range of writers and photographers, such as Raymond Depardon, Annie Ernaux and Jean Rolin, have responded to and evoked the consequences of these processes.
I would be very happy to hear from potential postgraduate students interested in topics related to any of my research areas.
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'Une réconciliation du réel et des hommes’: Mythologies and the politics of thingsNottingham French Studies, vol. 47, no. 2, pp. 19-28Contributions to Journals: Articles
Portrait of a Nation: Depardon, France, PhotographyJournal of Romance Studies, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 19-30Contributions to Journals: Articles
Coming to terms with the future: the experience of modernity in Annie Ernaux’s Journal du dehorsFrench Cultural Studies, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 125-136Contributions to Journals: Articles
Affaires de Famille: The Family in Contemporary French Culture and TheoryRodopi, Amsterdam. 347 pagesBooks and Reports: Books
François Mauriac: The Making of an IntellectualRodopi, Amsterdam. 202 pagesBooks and Reports: Books
Andreï Makine: Perspectives RussesEditions L'Harmattan, Paris. 140 pagesBooks and Reports: Books
People, place and urban change in contemporary French photographyThe Art of the Project. Berghahn Books, pp. 156-171, 15 pagesChapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters
Vers une lecture bakhtinienne de MakineAndreï Makine: Perspectives Russes. Editions L'Harmattan, pp. 117-123Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters
Andreï Makine: La Rencontre de l’Est et de l’OuestEditions L'Harmattan, Paris. 152 pagesBooks and Reports: Books
La séduction du voyage dans l’oeuvre d’Andreï MakineAndreï Makine: La Rencontre de l’Est et de l’Ouest. Editions L'Harmattan, pp. 17-24Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters