Meet Our Students
In this current day when there seems to be a lot of talk about which is more important, STEM or humanities studies, I am excited about texts that are 270 years old. That might seem contradictory, but my research into the literature of the Enlightenment looks at precisely the origins of these tensions and their relevance for today. When I’m reading Bernardin de St. Pierre’s novel Paul et Virginie, or Buffon and Daubenton’s Histoire Naturelle, or even Raynal (and Diderot’s) Histoire des Deux Indes, I’m impressed at how what we will eventually call science functions with humanities, as a part of humanities perhaps, to write a better future for humankind. The broad concepts I work with fall under the umbrella terms of disenchantment and re-enchantment, and it’s all about how authors and texts in the 18th century strip away mystical explanations for the functioning of the physical world, observe carefully to record the world as they see it, and transmit that experience in a way that conveys a context of knowledge with meaning and a sense of our place in the universe. In writing my dissertation, I hope to provide some new tools for readers to explore these and other texts, to descend into the archeology of thought itself (with help from Foucault) and shed some light on how differently western culture conceived of knowledge, meaning, and creative work 200 to 300 years ago at a moment when our modern paradigm was taking shape. I’m also thinking a lot about how engraved illustrations played a role in these projects, so I hope to see how early modern print culture studies can speak to the interplay of word and image in particular editions of the works I study.
This has been a fascinating voyage that has come a long way from my first encounters with Baudelaire’s darkly romantic poems as an undergraduate at St. Olaf College. My time at University of Wisconsin-Madison for my Master’s degree helped to round out a comprehensive knowledge of six centuries of French literature and introduce me to the pedagogy concepts that serve me in teaching my classes every day.
I am a Ph.D. candidate focusing on poetry, theology, and geography. My dissertation project, in short, examines how nineteenth-century French poetry developed a sacred and unconquerable space in opposition to imperial expansionism, epitomized by the growth of international railway networks. I published two articles: one entitled "Le nihilisme intégral" in a collective volume at the Presses universitaires de Rouen et du Havre (2017); another one called "Dire 'Adieu' au 'Génie' - Le sacré des lointains chez Rimbaud," in Parade Sauvage (2017), the leading journal on Arthur Rimbaud. Additionally, I work in Game Studies and will soon publish an article entitled "Speaking About and Through Video Games: Towards Verbalizing a New Grammar," in the journal Conserveries mémorielles (September 2018).
MA, French Studies, Université Paul Valéry, Montpellier, France (2014)
This degree included one year of study at the University of Minnesota
BA, French Studies, Université Paul Valéry, Montpellier, France (2009-12)
This degree included one year of study at the University of Birmingham
I am a Ph.D. candidate specializing in postcolonial literature and especially Maghrebi literature. My research interests also include gender studies and psychoanalysis. For my thesis, I will focus on the theme of clandestine migration in novels, comic books, films and documentaries. My article “‘Le père toxique’ et ‘la fille remède’ dans le premier récit de Trois femmes puissantes de Marie NDiaye,” appeared in The French Review (May 2017) and I am currently working on putting together a collected volume on Franco-Algerian writer Salim Bachi.
I grew up in Egypt. I received a BA in French from Cairo University and an MA, again in French, from the University of Western Ontario. In my MA work I looked at the role of different media—novels, films and graphic novels—in defining the relationship between imagination, memory and space. My doctoral work focuses on spectatorship and imagination in French twentieth century avant-garde cinema and literature. I research how avant-garde cinema and literature in interwar and postwar France participated in the emergence of new ways of spectating and imagining space, memory, and history.
BA, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
MA, University of Western Ontario, Ontario, Canada
My DEA dissertation topic «Démaîtrise et Déconstruction dans le roman kouroumaen» underscored the constant concern of the critics to look into the writings of the Ivorian novelist, Ahmadou Kourouma, for the means involved in exposing the situation of the Africans in the turmoil of the sociopolitical challenges born from the independences and especially the successful experience in the Africanization of his writing, in other words, the subversion of the French language. Also, it was important to emphasize that the terms used in my topic were all new in the vocabulary of literary criticism and justified the scriptural particularity of novelistic production of my work.
Building up on my previous research interest, I would like to explore within Postcolonial African Francophone Literature the Representations of Power and People, New African Identity in Afropolitanism Context as define on one hand by Achille Mbembe, and on the other hand by Jaji Tsitsi. The Aesthetics of Writing, that I will also discuss, in terms of subversion of French language seems not to go anywhere, and therefore is still one of the formal characteristics that shape various themes in the African literature today through the books of Cameroonian novelist, Patrice Nganang, for example.
DEA (Diplôme d’Etudes Approfondies), Graduate Studies in French Language and Literature with a Major in Critical Theory Université de Lomé (Togo)
Une Douloureuse espérance, March 2012, iUniverse Inc., Bloomington, Indiana (Novel)