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Professor Simon Gaunt

Professor Simon Gaunt


Professor of French Language and Literature

Tel +44 (0)20 7848 2030
Address Department of French
King's College London
Room 4.35 Virginia Woolf Building
22 Kingsway
London WC2B 6LE


  • BA Warwick (1982); PhD Warwick (1986)
  • Research Fellow, Downing College, Cambridge (1986-88)
  • Lecturer at University of Cambridge and Fellow of St Catharine’s College (1988-98)
  • Professor of French Language and Literature, King's College London, from 1998, Head of Department 1998-2004
  • Fellow of King's College London, from 2015
  • Honorary Fellow of St Catharine's College, Cambridge, from 2016
Research interests and PhD supervision
  • Old French literature
  • Medieval Occitan literature
  • Textual criticism (editing medieval texts)
  • Modern critical theory

Simon Gaunt's main research interests are: Old French literature; medieval Occitan literature; textual criticism (editing medieval texts); modern critical theory. He has worked on a wide range of twelfth- and thirteenth-century texts, including troubadour lyric, chansons de geste, verse and prose courtly romance, fabliaux, beast epic, hagiography, the Roman de la Rose and medieval travel literature. He is particularly interested in theoretically oriented approaches to medieval literature and textual criticism, notably in relation to feminism and queer theory, Marxism, psychoanalysis, anthropology and postcolonial theory. His most recent books are Marco Polo's Le Devisement du Monde: Narrative Voice, Language and Diversity (Boydell and Brewer, 2013) and (with Karen Pratt) The Song of Roland and other Poems of Charlemagne (OUP, 2016). He was PI on the AHRC-funded project Medieval Francophone Literary Culture Outside France, see, and is currently PI on the ERC-funded project The Values of French, see

Topics on which Simon Gaunt has supervised PhD theses include: Occitan satire, verse romance compilations, community in saints’  lives, cyclical narratives, the continuations to Chrétien de Troyes’ Conte du graal, medieval debate poetry, medieval translation, and the mobility of medieval lyric.

For more details please see his full research profile.

Selected publications
  • (with Sarah Kay) The Troubadours: an Introduction (Cambridge: CUP, 1999), 330 pp.
  • (with Ruth Harvey and Linda Paterson) Marcabru: a Critical Edition (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2000), 609 pp.
  • Martyrs to Love: Love and Death in Medieval French and Occitan Courtly Literature (Oxford: OUP, 2006), 234 pp.
  • (with Sarah Kay) The Cambridge Companion to Medieval French Literature (Cambridge: CUP, 2008), xxii + 275 pp. 
  • Marco Polo’s Le Devisement du Monde: Narrative Voice, Language and Diversity (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2013)
  • (with Karen Pratt) The Song of Roland and other Poems of Charlemagne (Oxford: OUP, 2016)

For a complete list of publications, please see Simon's full research profile.


Simon Gaunt teaches classes on medieval French and Occitan literature; critical theory, particularly feminism, queer theory, poststructuralism, and psychoanalysis; 19th- and 20th-c. French literature.

Expertise and public engagement
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