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Dr Siobhán McIlvanney

Dr Siobhán McIlvanney

McIlvanney_SiobhanReader in French and Francophone Women’s Writing

Head of Department of French
Tel +44 (0)20 7848 1836
Address Department of French
King’s College London 
Room 4.48 Virginia Woolf Building
22 Kingsway
London WC2B 6LE




I graduated with an M.A. in French and German from the University of Glasgow, before completing a D. Phil. at the Queen’s College, Oxford. I joined the Department of French at King’s in 1994.

Research interests and PhD supervision
  • Contemporary French Women’s Writing
  • Franco-Algerian Women’s Writing
  • Early French Women’s Press
My main area of research is contemporary French women’s writing, on which I have published many book chapters and articles, and a monograph on Annie Ernaux.  I have a particular interest in Franco-Algerian women’s writing, in particular works produced by Maïssa Bey, Leïla Marouane and Malika Mokeddem.  I have also published on beur

female authors.  A further area of my research concerns the origins and early years of the French women’s press, on which I have also published.  

I would welcome Ph. D. applications from students interested in working on contemporary French and Franco-Algerian women’s writing, French feminism or the French women’s press.

For more details, please see my full research profile.

Selected publications
  • ‘Education and Exile in the Writings of Maïssa Bey and Malika Mokeddem’ in Exiles, Travellers and Vagabonds: Rethinking Mobility in Francophone Women’s Writing, (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2016), pp. 131-52
  • ‘Grandmother Through the Looking-glass: (Anti)ageing Perspectives in Noelle Châtelet’s Au pays des merveilles’, The Modern Language Review, III, 4, 2016, pp. 975-87
  • ‘Scribbling Sorority: Writer-Reader Relations in the Early French Women’s Press and Le Journal des dames’ in Solitaires, solidaires: Conflict and Confluence in Women's Writings in French, eds Elise Hugueny-Leger and Caroline Verdier (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015), pp. 95-113
  • ‘Fictionalising the Father in Maïssa Bey’s Entendez-vous dans les montagnes…’, Hawwa: Journal of Women of the Middle East and the Islamic World, 12, 2-3, 2014, pp. 195-220
  • Quand la folie parle: The Dialectic Effect of Madness in French Literature since the Nineteenth Century, co-editor, (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2014) 

For a complete list of publications, please see my full research profile.


I teach on a variety of courses, ranging from ‘Introduction to French Literature’ and ‘French Narrative Texts: An Introduction’ in the first year to an M.A. option on ‘Contemporary Women’s Writing in French’. Other undergraduate teaching includes ‘The French Novel Post-1700’, ‘Contemporary French Women’s Writing’ as a B.A. module and ‘Contemporary French Feminism’.

Expertise and public engagements

I am a member of the International Assessment Board for the Irish Research Council.  I was the recipient of a Teaching Excellence Award in 2007.

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