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Professor of French, University of Leeds

Interested in women writers in France, late nineteenth century to the present; popular and middlebrow fiction; French cinema; gender and sexuality in French literature and film; French feminism.

I came to Leeds in September 1999, which coincided with the award of a Leverhulme Fellowship to support the writing of a monograph on Rachilde, the only woman writer of the fin-de-sicle Decadent movement (see publications). My specialist teaching has been on women writers and on French cinema, and at Leeds I also contributed to the successful development of the Centre for World Cinemas. I have served on the executive committees of the major French Studies scholarly and professional associations, and chaired the national Gapper Book Prize 2008-10. I have been one of the organisers of the 'Women In French' feminist network since it was founded in 1988. In 1998 I was awarded the Chevalier dans l’ordre des palmes acadmiques, for services to French culture. I am currently (2018-21) also Honorary Professor in French at the University of Nottingham.

Colette (Macmillan, 1991)
French Women Writers 1848-1994 (Athlone, Women in Context Series, 1996)
François Truffaut (Manchester University Press, 1998) co-authored with Robert Ingram
Rachilde – Decadence Gender and the Woman Writer (Berg, 2001)
Romance and Readership in Twentieth-Century France: Love Stories (Oxford University Press, 2006).
Reclaiming the Middlebrow: Women, stories and the hierarchy of culture in France since the Belle Époque (Liverpool University Press, 2018)


  • –present
    Professor of French, University of Leeds