Academic staff in the Department of Modern Languages are engaged in a wide range of research and scholarly projects. The Department hosts a vibrant research seminar series with guest speakers from across the EU. It also contributes to the new Faculty of Humanities research seminar series. Academic staff in the department are also members of research networks in Africa, the United States and Europe. The Department has recently undertaken a major expansion in its research activity. It has an international profile in francophone African and Caribbean Studies, and is strengthening its profile in a number of other areas including contemporary European cinema, gender and society in post-reunification Germany, pedagogical theory and practice and culture and society in contemporary Spain.

Recent Submissions

  • New Journeys in Iberian Studies: A (Trans)National and (Trans)Regional Exploration

    Gant, Mark; Ruzzante, Paco; Hatton, Anneliese; University of Chester; University of Cambridge; University of Nottingham (Cambridge Scholars, 2018-08-01)
    The research collected in this volume consists of 18 chapters which explore a number of key areas of investigation in contemporary Iberian studies. As the title suggests, there is a strong emphasis on trans-national and trans-regional approaches to the subject area, reflecting current discourse and scholarship, but the contributions are not limited by these approaches and include an eclectic range of recent work by scholars of history, politics, literature, the visual arts and cultural and social studies, often working in transdisciplinary ways. The geographical scope of the transnational processes considered range from intra-Iberian interconnections to those with the UK, Italy and Morocco, as well as transatlantic influences between the Peninsula and Argentina, Cuba and Brazil. The book opens up some pioneering new directions in research in Iberian studies, as well as variety of fresh approaches to hitherto neglected aspects of more familiar issues.
  • Anthropologists in Conversation

    Griffiths, Claire H.; University of Chester (Cambridge University Press, 2017-11-03)
    Review of and discussion of Marianne Lemaire's Lettres de Sanga 2016
  • Le sapeur - Un dandy postcolonial?

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (Peter Lang, 2017)
    The Sape, a sartorial colourful movement of exuberance, developed in the colonial Congos under the colonial regimes. The origins are uncertain and surrounded by numerous mysteries, it is undeniable though that the movement is linked to second-hand clothes imported to the Congos from Paris and Brussels. The text presents the different myths around the origins of the SAPE and shows how it reflects in contemporary French-speaking literature. Postcolonial thinkers have often considered the movement as “homosocial” in the sense that Eve Sedgwick gave to the term. We are going to challenge this perspective by arguing that it is the marginal position of the Sapeur plus his desire to be perceived as a dandy which create this “homosocial” impression. His lack of capital is the major difference from the historical dandy.
  • Awakening Senses for Language Learning

    Foncubierta, José Manuel; Gant, Mark; Universidad de Cádiz; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars, 2016-10-01)
    The chapter explores how multisensory approaches to language learning can enhance learning, helping it to become more experiential, engaging and intense by harnessing the potential of visual images and melodies to connect with learners' affective and emotional capacities and to thereby increase memory skills and motivation.
  • Interdependent Autonomy: Face-to-Face and Digital Media in Modern Language Learning

    Fonseca-Mora, M. Carmen; Gant, Mark; Herrero Machanocoses, Francisco; University of Huelva; University of Chester (Peter Lang, 2017-05-26)
    This chapter reflects on the role of face-to-face and digital supported learning in higher education in the UK. By means of a survey conducted among language learners the authors anlyse the learner's use of technologies and their preferences and attitudes towards online, face-to-face and blended language learning.
  • Melodies, rhythm and cognition in foreign language learning

    Fonseca-Mora, M.Carmen; Gant, Mark; University of Huelva; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars, 2016-10-01)
    Melodies, Rhythm and Cognition in Foreign Language Learning is a collection of essays reflecting on the relationship between language and music, two unique, innate human capacities. This book provides a clear explanation of the centrality of melodies and rhythm to foreign language learning acquisition. The interplay between language music brings to applied linguists inquiries into the nature and function of speech melodies, the role of prosody and the descriptions of rhythmical patterns in verbal behaviour. Musical students seem to be better equipped for language learning, although melodies and rhythm can benefit all types of students at any age. In fact, in this book melodies and rhythm are considered to be a springboard for the enhancement of the learning of foreign languages.
  • Nikolski de Nicolas Dickner. - américanité, archéologie, intertextualité

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (University Press of Presov, 2012-06-05)
    Author treats different dimensions of space in Nicolas Dickner's novel Nikolski. He analyses the way in which the novel ties links between space and family and, furthermore, outlines the role stratification plays in the novel.
  • Maculinités postcoloniales dans Les Parapluies de Cherbourg et Les Demoiselles de Rochefort de Jacques Demy

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (Königshausen und Neumann., 2016-01-30)
    This text explores how popular cultures negotiates new forms of masculinity after the loss of the French colonies in 1962.
  • “Crime has no chance”: the discourse of everyday criminality in the Neue Berliner Illustrierte, 1961-1989

    Millington, Richard; University of Chester (Cambridge University Press, 2017-03-31)
    This article examines how the East German regime communicated and explained the existence and persistence of everyday criminality to its citizens. According to the tenets of the Party, crime should have ceased to exist after the construction of a socialist society in East Germany. It did not. The article analyses the regime’s account of everyday criminality as it appeared in reports and commentaries in the pages of the NBI, 1961-1989. First published in 1945, the NBI quickly became the most popular weekly magazine in the GDR.
  • Allégories du masculin chez Romain Gary.

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (2014-03-15)
    es Études sur la masculinité sont une branche encore relativement jeune des Études du genre. Elles se penchent sur la question de la représentation et de l’identité masculines et, de la sorte, favorisent des approches résolument interdisciplinaires. Romain Gary interrogeait le fait masculin de diverses manières : dans ses textes fictionnels le masculin est étroitement lié à des figures allégoriques : ainsi dans La Promesse de l’Aube, Nina Kacew et Charles de Gaulle forment des parents symboliques permettant à Gary d’accéder à la francité. Dans La Danse de Gengis Cohn, Florian représente l’homme qui, dans sa recherche de l’absolu, tombe en proie aux idéologies fascistes, tandis que le roman Au-delà de cette limite votre ticket n’est plus valable lie le déclin de la puissance à une certaine perte de vitesse de la France après les Trente Glorieuses. Abstract Masculinity Studies are a relatively new field within Gender Studies – they explore representations of maleness and male identities, thus fostering a radically interdisciplinary approach. Questions of masculinity are omnipresent in Romain Gary’s texts, frequently they are linked to allegorical figures. In La Promesse de l’Aube, Charles de Gaulle and Nina Kacew assure a symbolic parenthood allowing Russia-born Gary to access to his « certain idea of France ». In La Danse de Gengis Cohn, Florian, a mass murderer, embodies the man who, in his quest for the absolute, falls prey to a fascist ideology. The novel Au-delà de cette limite n’est plus valable links the decline of male sexual power to the decline of France after the years of unprecedented economic growth between 1947 and 1975.
  • L'impossibilité d'une ile. L'histoire littéraire française dans la mondialisation

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (2014-08-26)
    Résumé L’imaginaire collectif français a longtemps été marqué par un lien étroit entre la nation et la narration. Ce lien était étayé, entre autres, par l’histoire littéraire, celle-ci a pendant longtemps joué un rôle crucial dans la constitution d’une identité collective et de ce fait dans le système éducatif. Dans un monde globalisé toutefois, ce lien se fait de plus en plus précaire. Bien que la France fût, grâce au fait colonial, rapidement confronté à des textes littéraires provenant d’ailleurs, ceux-ci étaient rapidement intégrés dans un narratif marqué par le principe de l’universalité française. Or depuis les années 1980 avec la mondialisation et la migration, le lien entre nation et narration est de plus en plus menacé. Ce texte étudie les manières dont les instances académiques françaises réagissent à ces menaces mais envisage aussi les mécanismes par le biais desquels ces tendances sont intégrés dans le narratif français, comment le lien entre narration et nation est réactualisé dans l’imaginaire collectif. Abstract France’s cultural self-perception has always been clearly marked by a close link between the nation and a narration. This link was provided, amongst other factors, by literary history. The history of French literature played a crucial role in "making France" and hence in educating young Frenchmen. In a globalised world however this link becomes more and more precarious. Although France, through colonisation, became quickly a country confronted with literary texts written outside of homeland France, these texts were integrated into the narrative of French universality. With globalisation and hyphenisation in the 1980s this narrative is increasingly threatened. Our text shows ways in which France reacts to these threats and how France is trying to maintain the scheme on the one hand, on the other how it tries to incorporate new tendencies in literary history and to adapt them to France’s particular historical narrative.
  • Aux confins des villes infectées. Un livre blanc de Philippe Vasset

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (Peter Lang Brusels, 2014-10-01)
    The present article explores the book Un livre blanc by Philippe Vasset which is dedicated to all the white spots on the official map of Paris. We thus try to explore the following question: How do you write about something that does not exist?
  • Prise de possession. Storytelling, culture populaire, colonialisme.

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (Königshausen und Neumann., 2016-04-12)
    The present book explores the relationship betweeen colonialism and popular culture. By analysing French posters and chansons from the years 1928-1934 we shall study the ways in which colonial popular cultures tells us stories about ethnicitiy and gender and how they endeavour to close the symbolic gap between France and the colonies.
  • Mémoire et intermédialité dans Les Chansons d'amour de Christophe Honoré

    Obergöker, Timo; University of Chester (Königshausen und Neumann., 2015-05-01)
    Christophe Honoré's cinema has often been described as postmodern yet nostalgic. The articles aims at exploring this "postmodern nostalgia" which is one of the major characteristics of contemporary French cinema.
  • State, Society and Memories of the Uprising of 17 June 1953 in the GDR

    Millington, Richard; University of Chester (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014-11-29)
    Condemned as a fascist putsch in the East and praised as a 'people's uprising' in the West, the uprising of 17 June 1953 shook East Germany. Drawing on interviews and archive research, this book examines East German citizens' memories of the unrest and reflects on the nature of state power in the GDR.
  • The fall of the Berlin Wall

    Millington, Richard; University of Chester (History Today Ltd, 2014-10-23)
    This article discusses how the Berlin Wall affected the citizens of East Germany through oral history interviews with 40 people in the city of Magdeburg.
  • Relocating the traditional in the Senegalese classroom

    Garvey, Brenda; University of Chester (University of Chester Press, 2013)
    The book chapter discusses the educational programme of Case des Tout-Petits in Senegal.
  • Globalizing the postcolony: Contesting discourses of gender and development in Francophone Africa

    Griffiths, Claire H.; University of Chester (Lexington Books, 2011)
    This book is a study of postcolonial development in the former French colonies of West Africa. This study analyses current thinking on gender and development policy, before moving on to examine the historical factors that have generated the gender and development deficit in the Francophone African regions.
  • Shifting centres and static peripheries: Geographies of power in Francophone African development politics

    Griffiths, Claire H.; University of Chester (University of Chester Press, 2013)
    This book chapter discusses the politics of gender and developments in post-colonial Francophone Africa.
  • Identity, dissatisfaction and political activity - the experience of East German women since unification

    Wagener, Debbie; Chester College of Higher Education (GRIN Verlag, 2002)
    This book investigates the integration of East German women into the new political, legal, and economic system of the re-unified Germany. East German women comprise a particularly significant group in the process of assimilation into the new Germany and they have been frequently singled out as those who have lost the most as a result of unification. The chapters cover - feminist ideology in east and west and the potential for conflict; public policy and the realities of female emancipation in East Germany; East German distinctiveness; dissatisfaction with the Federal Republic; and political activity and mobilisation.

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