Our research

Our research and publications are distinctive because they cover the whole discipline of French studies from the medieval period through to the present day, since they embrace francophone studies in their global diversity, and due to our broad range of disciplinary approaches. Colleagues at Leeds pursue cutting-edge individual and collaborative research of international standing in the fields of literature, history, politics, thought, cinema and visual cultures, postcolonial/francophone studies, cultural studies, and language, linguistics and translation studies.

We have particular strengths in cultural memory, popular culture, 19 and 20th century literature, critical theory, film, and the study of colonial and postcolonial Algeria and Morocco. Colleagues in French have secured funding from the AHRC, the British Academy, the Leverhulme Trust, Wellcome Trust, Paris City Council and the Institute for Advanced Study, Paris.

We frequently host international conferences and have a regular research seminar series with invited speakers from the UK, France, and beyond. We welcome postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers to join our vibrant research community.  Our staff pages provide further information on our fields of interest, funded research and collaborative projects

Impact and engagement

Researchers in French are involved in a diverse range of activities with non-academic partners. For example, Professor Alison Fell has worked extensively with museums locally, nationally and internationally (France, Belgium) as part of the ‘Legacies of War’ project commemorating the centenary of the First World War. Professor Sarah Water’s Suicide Voices programme has involved working with healthcare organisations and trades unions in France and the UK aiming to shape public health policy agendas. Dr Nina Wardleworth’s research on the Imperial dimensions of World War Two and the Occupation in France has included teaming up with Imperial War Museum North to stage an exhibition of photographs about diversity in the French army and giving a public lecture on women from the French Antilles (National Army Museum, London).

Dr Jason Allen has been working with the Leeds West Indian Community on the memory of colonial violence in Jamaica, notably the massacre of 439 Black Jamaicans in 1865 under British Colonial Governor Edward John Eyre. Dr Jim House advised the French government on François Hollande’s speech of 19 March 2016 commemorating the end of the Algerian war of independence, and he has worked with many civil society organisations, as well as journalists and film-makers in Algeria, Morocco and France to disseminate historical knowledge on colonial and postcolonial history.   

Our expertise

Research projects and groups

Centre for Translation Studies
Centre for World Cinemas and Digital Cultures
Centre for World Literatures
European Popular Musics
Family Sagas in World Literatures and Audio-Visual Cultures
Language at Leeds
Medfrench
Performance, Politics and Piety
Orcit.eu
Institute for Colonial and Postcolonial Studies
Institute for Medieval Studies
Popular Cultures Research Network
French Film Online
The Eighteenth Century Studies Seminar
Legacies of War
Performing Violence
FRAME (FRAnce roMan guErre)
Power and the Paratext in Medieval Manuscript Culture
Constant
Writing 1900