Isla Paterson


I graduated from the University of Leeds in BA French and Spanish in 2018. After a year as a lectrice at the Université Paris-Est Créteil, I returned to Leeds to complete an MA by Research under the supervision of Dr Andy Stafford and Dr Jim House (2019–2020) which was funded by the Sutcliffe Scholarship. 

My MA by Research thesis was entitled, Playing to the West? Representations of Picasso, the gendered body and Islamism in Kamel Daoud’s Le peintre dévorant la femme, and received first place in the Algerian Studies Master’s Prize in 2020 (Society for Algerian Studies and LSE Middle East Centre). 

I am currently a PhD Candidate in French, and my research is generously funded by the White Rose College of the Arts & Humanities (WRoCAH). 

Research interests

My WRoCAH-funded research focuses on contemporary Francophone Algerian and Moroccan literature within the context of Franco-Maghrebi, or ‘transnational’ public spheres, in particular looking at the consequences of how prominent writers such as Kamel Daoud and Leïla Slimani negotiate between a plural readership in France, Europe, the Maghreb, and beyond.



  • BA Hons (First-Class) French & Spanish
  • MA by Research (Distinction)