The Department of Modern Languages at Exeter is a centre of excellence for teaching and research across a broad and diverse range of interests within the discipline. We are a dynamic and friendly team who offer intellectually challenging and wide-ranging teaching, and a flourishing research culture.
Here are a few of our academics involved in research within the department;
My research interests lie in French poetry and culture of the period 1350-1500, particularly Alain Chartier and Christine de Pizan; medieval gender studies; literary and poetic community; text and image; the later reception and adaptation of medieval texts and the Middle Ages on film; manuscript studies; the history of the book; and digital humanities.
My current research looks at how the material context of a work's reception can influence and shape its destiny. Readers of a text are influenced by this material context, as well as by generic expectations and their own cultural assumptions.
I have developing research interests in two areas relating to poetry and to first-person literary writing of the late nineteenth and the twentieth century. I am developing a book project on the relations of the first-person writings of Proust, Valéry, Leiris and Beckett. Additionally I am interested in contemporary English-language ‘versions’ of modern poetry in French (by Baudelaire, Rimbaud and Mallarmé, amongst others) written by poets such as Tom Paulin, Ciaran Carson and Derek Mahon.
Since publishing my book on the poetry of the ‘Sturm-und-Drang' author Lenz, I have been interested in the socio-political and literary evolution of ideas and structures in German poetry, drama and narrative prose of the 18th and 19th centuries. My PhD on Karl Gutzkow and my involvement in the editing of one volume of the 'Schiller-Nationalausgabe' and in the theory of scholarly editing helped to create the hybrid edition of the complete works of Karl Gutzkow, an international project of which I have been co-director since 1997.
One of my long-term interests is the development of prose writing. Examining different theoretical approaches to narratology and challenging them with a more historically based model has given me a good basis for understanding novels, novellas and shorter pieces of prose from the 18th century to the present. I am currently working on a monograph about less well known prose writing of the mid-19th century, an effort to partly re-write our concepts of German Realism since the 1840s.
My current research project investigates the Chinese foreign relations with the third world countries, especially the Middle Eastern countries during the 1950s and 60s. It intends to understand how Chinese internationalist vision was articulated through its interactions with the Third-World states and it was responded to by them. It also aims to show that the Chinese interpretation of the “three worlds thesis” (sange shijie lilun) is associated with the Chinese own revolutionary experience and the Chinese Communist Party’s understanding of “national question”, which differs significantly from both the Soviet reading of the same term and the American narrative of “national self-determination” coined by Woodrow Wilson.
Our current PGRs
We're proud of the research carried out by our PhD students. There are currently around 15 PhD students in the Department, many of whom maintain an online personal profile detailing their research activities. Follow the links below to find out more about them and their research projects.
|Student||Research title||First supervisor||Second supervisor|
|Giada Alessandroni||Female Friendship and Sociability in Nineteenth-Century French Literature||Dr Maria Scott||Dr Fiona Cox|
|Maria Anesti||Oriental Arcadia: The entangled histories of living with nature, China and Europe||Dr Yue Zhuang|
|Sandra Daroczi||Reception of contemporary Francophone women writers||Dr Fiona Cox||Dr Maria Scott|
|Laura Dragomir||Die Neue Frau im sozialen Milieu: Literarische Darstellungen erotischer Emanzipationsansprueche von der Jahrhundertwende zur Weimarer Republik.||Professor Ricarda Schmidt||Professor Ulrike Zitzlsperger|
|Sarah Foxen||Historical and contemporary perspectives on Belgium and the Franco-Belgian border.||Dr Zoë Boughton||Professor Aidan Coveney|
|Russell Sanchez||The Nature of Trade: Idelogical Dispositions Towards Nature, and their Impact on Dutch Chinese Trade in the Late 18th Century||Dr Yue Zhuang||Professor Emma Cayley|
|Maria Selezneva||The role of the translator in creating cultural identity (an examination of English and Russian texts for tourists in Australia, China, Finland and regions of the Russian Federation)||Dr Richard Mansell||Dr Muireann Maguire|