Postgraduate Research Projects

Current projects

  • Annabelle Doherty (PhD, September 2015)
    Living the Past through French Heritage Film: Historical Thinking and Cinematic Cultural Memory
  • Nathan Krug (PhD, 2016)
    Second language learning through computer-mediated face-to-face interaction
  • Margaret Hennessy (PhD, March 2015)
    La force des mots : les styles épistolaire et littéraire de Claire Cayron (1935-2002), auteure, correspondante de Simone de Beauvoir
  • Joel Mak (PhD)
    Le discours politique et le discours culturel au Québec
  • Clément Extier (cotutelle Lyon) (PhD, 2017)
    The Fragmentation and reconquest of the self in the fiction of Drieu La Rochelle
  • Nathalie Camerlynck (PhD, 2017)
    Self-translation and plurilingual poetics after Beckett: Raymond Ferman, Nancy Huston and Caroline Bergvall
  • Juliana Lamoury (Mphil, 2015)
    Le piano dans la France romantique – le cas de George Sand

Current Postgraduate Research

Nathalie Camerlynck

Natalie Camerlynck

Doctor of Philosophy

Thesis Title
Self-Translation and plurilingual poetics after Beckett: Raymond Federman, Nancy Huston and Vassilis Alexakis

My current research focuses on self-translation and plurilingual poetics in their relation to life writing. I'm examining the works of Raymond Federman, Vassilis Alexakis and Nancy Huston, specifically stories of childhood. I'm interested in the way that memory is created through translation. Previous research focused on literary and poetic references in the self-translations of Samuel Beckett.

Conference Papers
2014 TRACT conference Paris III Sorbonne Nouvelle
“Cat in the Throat: Sonority and Materiality in Caroline Bergvall’s Meddle English

FRNC2633 Senior French 9
FRNC2627 French Contemporary History and Culture

Clément Extier

Clement Extier

Doctor of Philosophy
Cotutelle Lyon II

Thesis Title
The Fragmentation and Reconquest of the Self in the fiction of Drieu La Rochelle

My research focuses on desire in the literary writings of Pierre Drieu la Rochelle: I am particularly interested in the articulation of death drives and life instincts in relation with the construction of the self in Drieu’s literary production (poetry, short stories, novels, and essays). I investigate these two poles through what appears as the two major figures in Drieu’s literary world, war and sexual relationships. I am also interested in the issues of the author (dead or not quite), genres (and cross contamination), and psychoanalytical (Freudian) approaches of literature as these are some of the challenges with which I have to come to terms in my project.

Conference Papers
2014 – Australian Society for French Studies Conference.
Je hais un autre : la recherche du moi des « provinces dévorées par le feu » aux « temps inquiets » de la paix dans les écrits de jeunesse de Pierre Drieu La Rochelle.

FRNC1631 Junior French 5 (Advanced)

Annabelle Doherty

Annabelle Doherty

Doctor of Philosophy

Thesis Title
Living the Past through French Heritage Film: Historical Thinking and Cinematic Cultural Memory

This thesis examines the French heritage film, a contemporary genre of historical film, which like other nations’ heritage cinema is often neglected or dismissed as providing “historical thinking” or encouraging a deep understanding of the past or “critical gaze” upon history. In comparison to precursor or parallel genres designated as “serious historical film”, the genre is traditionally regarded as a mere costume drama of fantasy, “romance and adventure”, presenting “history as spectacle” for audiences’ entertainment and “visual pleasure” in a surface and trivial reconstitution of the past. In terms of cultural memory, French heritage cinema is typically confined to being either a reflection of present socio-political and economic contexts or a celebratory cinematic vehicle of nostalgia. My study sets up however the hypothesis that French heritage cinema encourages historical thinking. I propose that the “corporeal effect” of heritage cinema’s cinematographic language through its “visual and aural sensuality” stimulates spectators to acquire a complex, multi-layered, multi-faceted “cinematic cultural memory” of historical events, figures and landscapes. I argue that the enhanced embodiment effect of recent filmic technologies immerse audiences into a vividly real, high-definition, stereo surround sound, virtual world, giving spectators the sensation of a past not directly lived. Addressing the dilemma of French heritage film incarnating simultaneously auteur/art-house and popular cinema, I consider the role of auteurism and stardom in the formation of cultural memory. My corpus includes: Life and Nothing But (Tavernier: 1989), A Very Long Engagement (Jeunet: 2004), Madame Bovary (Chabrol: 1991), Camille Claudel (Nuytten: 1988) and La Reine Margot (Chéreau: 1994). The films’ reconstitutions are considered against scholarly historical texts, autobiographical novels and memoirs, archival films, photos and period objects, in order to determine how the authenticity, historical realism and fidelity to the past are impacted by filmic technologies, auteurism and stardom.

FRNC 2614 - French Texts & Society
FRNC 1632 - Junior French Advanced 6

Conference Presentations
Annabelle Doherty, “Digital Tableaux of Cinematic Cultural Memory in Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s A Very Long Engagement” (paper presented at Australian Society of French Studies, University of Sydney, September 2010)

Annabelle Doherty, “Superimposition and Cultural Memory in Claude Chabrol’s and Jean Renoir’s Adaptations of Madame Bovary” (paper presented at Studies in French Cinema, Kings College, London, April 2011)

Annabelle Doherty, “Cinematic Cultural Memory and Auteurism in Claude Chabrol's Madame Bovary” (paper presented at Australian Society of French Studies, University of Queensland, Brisbane, December 2013)

Annabelle Doherty, “The Cinematic Cultural Memory of World War One through Filmic Technologies of French Cinema” (paper presented at UK Society of French Studies, University of Aberdeen, Scotland, June-July 2014)

Annabelle Doherty, “Stardom and Cinematic Cultural Memory in Isabelle Adjani's French Heritage Biopic Camille Claudel”. Caméra-Stylo Conference: Intersections in Literature and Cinema 2015. University of Sydney.

Journal Article
Annabelle Doherty, “Digital Tableaux of Cinematic Cultural Memory in the French Heritage Film: Un long dimanche de fiançailles”, Australian Journal of French Studies 49.2 (2012): 196-207.

Recently Completed Theses


  • Kari Hanet
    Hollywood remakes French films (1990-2010)
  • Miriam Thompson
    Rebellious maids in French Film
  • Annick Pellegrin
    (Not) Looking Together in the Same Direction: A Comparative Study of Representations of Latin America in a Selection of Franco-Belgian and Latin American Comics


  • Will Visconti
    La Goulue et La Casati: Studies in Decadentism