MT 2016 Week 1 Updates

Get your Week 2 off to a stellar start by attending the OCCT Discussion Group! In the first meeting of term Prof. Matthew Reynolds (English) and Prof. Mohamed-Salah Omri (Oriental Studies) will talk about what Comparative Criticism is, and how graduate students can use this approach in their research. The meeting will take place on Monday, 17th October, 12:45-2:00pm at St. Anne's College, Seminar Room 5. A free sandwich lunch will be provided. For further info, especially regarding the Discussion Group’s new format and gaining access to readings, see here. On Tuesday evening (18 October; 8pm), Dr Eleni Philippou, in her capacity as editor of OCCT Review, will be giving an informal talk on writing academic book reviews at the Quarter House Coffee Shop in Cowley. To find out more about this event, organised by Oxford Culture Review, see here.

In Week 1 we had the OCCT welcome event at the Radcliffe Humanities building. People mingled over wine, and chatted about OCCT’s great new Michaelmas programme and OCCT Review!

Take a look at OCCT Review’s latest entry: a review of Rebecca L. Walkowitz’s Born Translated: The Contemporary Novel in an Age of World Literature by Karolina Watroba. It’s available here.




University College London

We are pleased to announce that the British Comparative Literature Association will be hosting a Graduate Reception on the evening of 7 November 2016.

The theme for this year’s Autumn Reception is “Afterlives”. We have three slots available for postgraduates to give a 20-minute paper on any aspect of their research in Comparative Literature that addresses literature’s multiple afterlives, such as socio-political, ethical, aesthetic, scientific, theoretical, mythical, and so on, or examines the way in which afterlives have come to shape the past, present, and future of comparative literature. Submissions need not be limited to these parameters and we welcome broad and creative interpretations of this theme.

BCLA Graduate Receptions are friendly evening seminars which offer postgraduates working in Comparative Literature and related fields the opportunity to present their work to peers and academics, followed by an informal wine reception. This Graduate Reception will also celebrate the winners of the 2016 Arthur Terry Postgraduate Essay Prize.

The deadline for abstracts (up to 250 words) is 21 October 2016; please send abstracts to Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information.

BCLA Postgraduate Representatives: Niall Sreenan, Stefano Rossoni, and Stanislava Dikova



The Institute of Modern Languages is delighted to announce its new Regional Conference Grant Scheme.

The scheme aims to support the study of modern languages outside London, to promote inter-institutional collaborations, and bring together scholars from the wider region as participants or attendees. Two awards are expected to be made each year, with a maximum of £2,000 being awarded per application.

Applications for events planned for the period 1 September 2017 to 30 June 2018 are now invited. The closing date for receipt of applications is 31 January 2017.

Click here for further details / how to apply




Hosted by the University of Cambridge at Pembroke College, Cambridge, UK, 11-12 April 2017

***Deadline: 2 December 2016***

Dear Colleagues,

We welcome proposals that engage with any aspect of Iranian studies within the arts, humanities, and social sciences. These include but are not limited to prehistory through to contemporary history; historiography; art and architecture history; anthropology; archaeology; cultural heritage; film studies; music; new media and communication studies; the performing arts; poetry and literature; languages and linguistics; Diaspora studies; international relations and political science; social and political theory; law and legal studies; economics; sociology; philosophy; religions and theology. Comparative themes and interdisciplinary approaches are also very welcome.


Proposals are open to postgraduate students and early career post-doctoral researchers from any disciplinary background:

1. Postgraduate students (MA, MPhil, MSt, etc. who are currently enrolled or graduated in 2016);
2. PhD students/candidates at any stage of their degree; and
3. post-docs subject to graduation within the last three years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016).

Persons falling into any of these categories are eligible to submit proposals for an individual paper or pre-arranged panel. PDF forms can be downloaded from the website.

The language of the conference is English. All submissions will undergo double-blind peer review.



VENUE             Birkbeck, 43 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD

DATES             8-10 December 2016

KEYNOTES       Juliet Mitchell, Laura Mulvey, Jean Owen, Naomi Segal, Naomi Tadmor

In the face of changing family relations in the west, we have moved rather suddenly from one replacement series to another: one or two centuries ago, replacement children were commonplace, as child mortality often led to families naming a baby after a dead sibling; nowadays serial monogamy means that children or adults contend with others both absent and present, whether living or dead. Replacement has effects both across and within generations and signifies both unruly passion and the attrition of passions lost, exchanged or conserved.

The Conference includes 5 keynote talks, 36 shorter papers, an art exhibition and three film-showings: Rebecca (Alfred Hitchcock, 1940), A Secret (Claude Miller, 2007) and 45 Years (Andrew Haigh, 2015).



Any queries to Naomi Segal ( or Jean Owen (



Plenary speakers: Aurélien Masson, director, Gallimard Série Noire; Dominique Jeannerod, Queens University, Belfast

In 2015, the Série Noire, Gallimard’s iconic crime fiction imprint celebrated its 70th birthday. Throughout its history, the collection has published cult and classic texts from authors as diverse as Raymond Chandler and Chester Himes to Jean-Patrick Manchette and Thierry Jonquet in its distinctive yellow and black covers. Some of its writers were destined for mainstream and literary recognition outside the world of detective fiction, others, such as James Hadley Chase, James Gunn and Jean Amila were to remain appreciated only by a narrow, but voracious band of crime aficionados.

Best known for its compelling depictions of detectives striving to close cases in murky and ambiguous moral milieux, the novels of the Série Noire also maintain a consistent dialogue – both explicit and implicit – between France and the USA. While the early years of the collection post World War II saw pro-American feeling manifest through the popularity of US writers, the Série Noire gradually became more critical of American culture, politics and society as time progressed through 1968 and towards a contemporary networked and late capitalist world of American hegemony. If, as Dennis Porter argues, the figure of Chandler’s Philip Marlowe brandishing a Colt Detective pistol is quintessentially American, what are the implications when the image is doubled in a French setting by Manchette’s Martin Terrier? What does it mean when French language detective fiction is translated and filmed by Hollywood?

This one-day conference at the American University of Paris (AUP) will consider how the Série Noire reflects the dynamics of the relationship between France and the USA. It will explore how the novels of the Série Noire can be understood as a prism through which the social, political and cultural links between the two nations can be better understood.

This conference is jointly organised by the AUP departments of Comparative Literature and English and Film Studies. For further information, or to attend, please contact Russell Williams ( Please note, all attendees must sign-up via email at least 48 hours in advance, and bring photo ID.


Dr Eleni Philippou

Comparative Criticism and Translation