French Seminar Series (FSS)
The French Studies Seminar Series grew out of the French Cultural Studies seminars originally created by Drs. Joan DeJean and Lynn Hunt in 1993. Each year, the current series is organized by two graduate students in French— one who helped organize the series the previous year, and another who will go on to organize the series the next year, with a new partner—, who create a forum where faculty, graduate students, and other members of the university community can come together to explore topics in French and Francophone studies. Invited speakers deliver introductory comments on a subject of their works in progress, related to a pre-circulated paper, before entering into discussion with participants and attendees, in both French and English. The Series is an opportunity not only for graduate students in French to gain experience organizing academic colloquia and engaging with the community of French and Francophone scholars beyond the University of Pennsylvania, but also for scholars, students, and faculty to engage in fruitful intellectual dialogue.
Please visit our website to learn more and view upcoming events.
Past speakers have included:
Philip Usher (New York University): "On the Exterranean: Towards an Ecology of Extraction in the Humanist Anthropocene"
Rachel Mesch (Yeshiva University): "Writing Their Way Out: Trans Imaginings in 19th Century France"
Benjamin Dalton (King's College London): "Life in Plastic: What Should We Do With Plasticity?"
Alison James (University of Chicago): "Autobiography in the Archive: Marguerite Yourcenar's Family Chronicles"
Mylène Priam (Harvard University): "Le Monde selon Glissant"
Brian Martin (Williams College): “Lumber Jacques: Logging and Literature from the French Novel to Queer Culture”
Priya Wadhera (Adelphi University): “Fêter la copie, brouiller l’original: Une étude de l’esthétique postmoderne dans Un cabinet d’amateur de Perec et d’œuvres choisies de Warhol”
Marcus Keller (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign): “Concepts of the Orient and the Issue of Early Modern Orientalism: Marlowe, Cervantes, Racine”
Nicholas Paige (University of California, Berkeley): “How to Read a Mind (Crébillon)” from Before Fiction: The Ancien Régime of the Novel
Lucy Swanson (University of Pennsylvania): “The Eye of the Zombie: Blankness, Projection, and Desire in Recent Haitian Fiction”
Kathleen Hart (Vassar College): “Strangers to Ourselves: Evolution and Animality in Balzac’s Passion in the Desert”
Jonathan Eburne (The Pennsylvania State University): “Breton’s Wall, Carrington’s Kitchen: Surrealism’s Archival Knowledge”