Research and Teaching Strengths

Staff in the Department of French Studies have expertise in a wide range of research areas in French and Francophone Studies.
We train students in French language, linguistics, the analysis of the literature and cinema, cultures and societies of the French and Francophone world and offer courses stemming from our own research on topics that include: Linguistics, eLearning, Contemporary French history and Politics, Theatre and Performance, The Sociology of Literature and Culture, Nineteenth-Century literature and culture, colonial and postcolonial studies, Francophone Asia, Franco-Arab Studies, Film and Media studies, World Cinema, and Gender and Sexuality Studies. All units of study involve a variety of approaches so that students receive a globally oriented education through our programs.

As a result of these research and teaching strengths, Honours and Doctoral students develop creative, original and competitive thesis topics.
The communicative approach and the critical thinking skills that we value play a key role in developing an interdisciplinary approach that proves to be invaluable to a variety of career paths such as business, law, education, medicine, government, international relations and the arts.

The Department has strong interdisciplinary links with several research clusters, departments and teaching programs across the School of Languages and Cultures, the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and the University, including: the Law and Society research network; the network ‘Religion, State and Society in the Muslim World’; Medieval Studies; International and Comparative Literary Studies; European Studies; Film studies, Germanic Studies, International and Global Studies; Arabic Languages and Cultures; and South-East Asian Studies.

The Department hosts a program of research seminars which include University of Sydney academic staff, postgraduate students and invited visiting scholars from other Australian and international universities.

Academic Staff Research Projects in Progress

  • Surrealism and Colonialism; Historiography of the Surrealist Lesbian; Orientalism in the Orient: Franco/Arab Dialogues Martine Antle
  • The Francophone social media: characteristics and place in the world; Social media and collaborative learning; The trialogic relationship between digital learning spaces, tasks and student interactions; Taxonomy of language assessment tasks and language curriculum design Marie-Thérèse Barbaux
  • The Transcendental Power of Simone de Beauvoir’s Language; The Translation of Second-order Meanings (i.e., symbolic meanings such as ideological and philosophical meanings) Alice Caffarel-Cayron
  • Creativity and Creative Writing Classes; New Textualities (BD, blogs, ebooks and on-line publication); The Birth of Literary Vocation Françoise Grauby
  • Comparison of the language of the law and the language of the media; Linguistic landscape as a symbolic construction of the public space: The cases of the Parisian neighbourhoods of Belleville and La Goutte d’Or Caroline Lipovsky
  • ‘Sensoriality in the Cinema of Marguerite Duras’; ‘The Cinema of Marguerite Duras: Feminism and Transnationalism’; Senescence in World Cinema Michelle Royer
  • Stars in World Cinema: Film Icons and Star Systems Andrea Bandhauer with Michelle Royer
  • Reinterpretation of the Vernon Sullivan Affair (France, 1946-1950) through the (new) lens of literary hoax theory Clara Sitbon
  • The Quartier of Belleville in Contemporary Film and Roman Noir; Migration, Public Policy and Gentrification in Paris; Transition of Language Students from the Secondary to the Tertiary Sector Carolyn Stott
  • Curating the self: La Chambre de Jeune Fille in Late Nineteenth Century France; Diary Writing, Mobility and Production of Feminine Gentility (nineteenth century) Sonia Wilson
  • Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Human Rights and Political Asylum; The Medium-term Impacts of 9/11 and its Aftermath for Women; Race, gender, politics and representation in France Bronwyn Winter