Dr Catherine Rodgers
Associate Professor
Modern Languages
Telephone: (01792) 295973
Room: Academic Office - 320
Third Floor
Keir Hardie Building
Singleton Campus

After a secondary and undergraduate education in France – Baccalauréat in Maths and Physics, Lycée Louis-le-Grand in Paris, and HEC (the highest-ranking French Business school) – and a short spell in industry, I completed a doctorate on Marguerite Duras and Doris Lessing with the help of grants from the University of East Anglia and the British Academy. I joined the French department in Swansea in 1989, and teach on a range of courses from first-year to MA, covering French Language, Literature, Culture, and Business French, as well as advanced translation.

My research focuses on modern and contemporary French women writing. In 1997, I co-founded the Société Internationale Marguerite Duras and co-edited its Bulletin for 20 years; I am now an Honorary Vice-president. In 2014, I co-organised a colloquium, at the prestigious French venue Cerisy, on ‘Marguerite Duras: Passages, Croisements, Rencontres’; the proceedings are due to be published in 2018 in Classiques Garnier.

Throughout my academic career, I have published on authors such as Carol Bernstein, Paule Constant, Anne-Marie Garat, Camille Laurens, Amélie Nothomb, Nathalie Rheims, and have specialised in Marguerite Duras, Marie Darrieussecq and Simone de Beauvoir.

My current research is concerned with the way in which Simone de Beauvoir and Colette have portrayed their relationship with their father, and I am co-editing a volume ofarticles exploring Marguerite Duras’s literary lineage.

I offer PhD supervision in the following areas: contemporary French women writing, French feminist theories, Marguerite Duras and Simone de Beauvoir, autofictional writings. 

Publications

  1. “Un ‘amour de tête’ déçu : Simone de Beauvoir et son père ». Nottingham French Studies 58
  2. Écrire la mort, écrire l’amour dansLa Part secrètede Carol Bernstein. Modern & Contemporary France 24(3), 271-282.
  3. Da errância ao nomadismo em Duras. In Maurício Ayer, Maria Cristina Vianna Kuntz (Ed.), Olhares sobre Marguerite Duras Regards sur Marguerite Duras. (pp. 84-91). São Paulo: Publisher Brasil.
  4. (in press). 4 dictionary entries. Paris: Champion.
  5. (in press). Entretien de Catherine Rodgers avec Yann Andréa . (La Revue des Lettres modernes). France: Garnier.

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Teaching

  • ML-227 War and Conflict in European Film (Modern Languages route)

    War and Conflict in European Film provides a detailed overview of the history of war and conflict in Europe from the early twentieth century to the present day as it is represented and expressed on film. Beginning with the origins of film-art fused with political expression, the module proceeds through the analysis of film movements and representative films to engage with and analyse the development of war and conflict in Europe as it is represented and expressed in relation to film narrative, aesthetics and genre. Encompassing both World Wars, the rise and fall of Communism, the often violent end of European colonialism, and the `oil wars¿ of recent decades, this module is of vital interest to all those with an interest in the history of Europe, the nature of war and conflict, and the response of film, the art form of the twentieth century, to these events and themes.

  • ML-320 Modern Languages Dissertation Preparation

    This module introduces you to the practice of research and dissertation writing in the field of Modern Languages and will guide you in the first part of your dissertation preparation. Areas covered include: selecting a relevant topic, asking relevant research questions, preparing and writing up a literature review, preparing and writing up a research proposal, research methods and library research tools, making use of foreign-language sources, structuring your dissertation, analysis and argumentation, compiling a bibliography. In addition to lectures and seminars, you will have three meetings with your supervisor. By the end of the module you will have developed your dissertation topic, know what methodology you will use and have acquired knowledge of how to organise and lay out your dissertation. Assessment for the module consists of a literature review, a research proposal and a presentation.

  • ML-321 Modern Languages Dissertation

    This module provides students with the opportunity to research one aspect of French, German, Italian or Hispanic culture in detail, and to present the findings of their research in a dissertation of 8000 words. The module will be taught by means of four practical seminars on research and writing skills, and through three formal supervision sessions with a dissertation supervisor. Your supervisor will help you to find a topic, suggest research strategies, agree a suitable title, discuss the structure of your dissertation, and will read closely and comment on one draft chapter. The topic may relate to a module you are doing at Level 3, provided that this does not involve a duplication of material and is agreed with the module coordinator in advance. The dissertations may be written in English, in your target language, or in Welsh (where Welsh-medium provision is available).

  • ML-322 From Page to Screen: Adapting the European Classics

    From the beginning of film-making, directors have been inspired to adapt classic works of literature for the screen. There are a variety of reasons for this, ranging from the commercial to the provocative, the nationalistic to the exploitative. Good film adaptations, however, can enrich our understanding of well-known or canonical literary works in numerous ways. They are also works of art in their own right. This modules examines seven short works of literature (one French play, two Spanish novels, two German novellas, and two selections of Italian tales or short stories) and eight films (two each from French, German, Italian and Spanish). The books were written between the 1350s and 1970s, the films made between 1959 and 1995. All achieved renown in their day and continue to excite debate and stimulate new interpretations. The guiding themes are heritage, religion, prejudice, and passion. Students of Modern Languages are expected to use sources in the languages that they are studying. All texts are available in English translation and all films have English sub-titles.

  • MLF100A Introduction to French Culture (A)

    Knowledge of French culture is an important part of the study of the French language. This module aims to introduce students to the culture of France from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. We shall study different cultural forms, such as poetry, novel and film. Poems from Baudelaire¿s Les Fleurs du mal will enable students to familiarise themselves with some French poetic forms. The poems will explore how beauty can be born out of evil, disease, despair, and death, and how through sensuality, alcohol, drugs and travel, the poet can transcend his solitude and anguish. The representation of women in particular will be looked at. The study of La Chatte by Colette will enable students to reflect further on gender relations at the beginning of the 20th century, as well as societal changes in France at the time, to understand how space can be a structuring principle, as well as analyse Colette¿s poetic style. Through the study of Louis Malle¿s controversial film, Lacombe, Lucien (1974), students will gain an appreciation of life in France during the Second World War. More specifically, they will consider the reasons why some individuals chose to collaborate, and the extent to which it is possible to judge those individuals based on their actions. To facilitate this discussion, students will also reflect on `the banality of evil¿ (Arendt, 1963), its representation in the film, and the manner in which this theory asks us to reconsider our understanding of both historical and contemporary acts of violence and abuses of power. Students will be given guidance in writing essays about culture and doing close textual readings through commentary writing. The module provides students with the analytical skills and basic knowledge which they need to pursue further cultural and historical modules in French in more detail. A Welsh-medium version of this module is available.

  • MLF100BW Cyflwyniad i Astudiaethau Diwylliannol Ffrangeg (B)

    Mae'r modiwl hwn yn rhoi cipolwg ar natur ac amrywiaeth gwledydd a rhanbarthau yn y byd lle mae Ffrangeg yn chwarae rhan sylweddol, trwy astudio gwaith cyfoes o gymdeithasau ffranoffoneg megis yr Antilles, gogledd a gorllewin Affrica, a Quebec. Cyflwynir myfyrwyr i amrywiaeth eang o ffurfiau diwylliannol, megis ffilm, straeon byrion a nofel. Mae'r modiwl yn ymchwilio i faterion a themâu megis plentyndod a dod yn oed, teulu, rhyw, rhywioldeb, mudo, arallrwydd, iaith a hunaniaeth. Mae'r modiwl yn darparu sgiliau dadansoddol a gwybodaeth sylfaen i fyfyrwyr y mae angen iddynt ddilyn modiwlau diwylliannol a hanesyddol pellach yn Ffrangeg yn fwy manwl.

  • MLF220 Paris

    The capital city of France is renowned as the capital of the nineteenth century, the arts and modernity. This module will introduce you to the unique cultural environment of Paris, and you will analyse its evolution from the nineteenth century to the present day. The main focus of the module will be the images of the city as mediated in fiction, art and iconography, architecture, music and film. The module explores the changing urban environment in Paris and its adjacent suburbs, from Baron Haussmann's controversial infrastructure projects in the nineteenth century, to the post-war construction of the HLM in the banlieues, to the twentieth-first century. The module will also examine the reputation of Paris as the capital of romance and its contemporary status as a multicultural metropolis.

  • MLF260A French Language 2A

    This module builds on the skills and knowledge acquired in the first year of study, and will equip students with the skills needed to use French in more complex concrete and abstract social and professional environments. This module aims at building on the skills and knowledge acquired in the first year of study, and will equip students with the skills needed to use French in more complex concrete and abstract social and professional environments appropriate to level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). It concentrates on developing fluency and accuracy in written and spoken French, so that the student can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party. It also aims at establishing a firm grammatical understanding of the language, and extending students¿ vocabulary to read, write, interpret and debate (explaining a viewpoint, giving independent advantages and disadvantages of various options) about topical issues related to contemporary French society and culture. Moreover, the module aims to enhance students¿ employability by systematically developing a personal professional career planning portfolio, providing a sound insight into the world of work. Classes will be conducted mainly in French. There is also a Welsh-medium version of this module.

  • MLF260B French Language 2B

    This module builds on and consolidates the skills and knowledge acquired in MLF260A by concentrating on further developing fluency and accuracy in written and spoken French appropriate to level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). It specifically aims at preparing the students for their Year Abroad and/or extend intercultural awareness, widening students¿ vocabulary to read, write and do presentations about topics related to France. The module also aims to enhance students¿ employability, by training them to do a successful presentation using appropriate IT applications. Classes will be conducted mainly in French. There is also a Welsh-medium version of this module.

  • MLFM30 Advanced Translation (English - French)

    In 17 weekly two hour small-group seminars running through Semester 1 and into Semester 2, students will translate, discuss and annotate both non-technical and technical texts. Practice assignments will grow progressively longer to reflect real-world conditions and students will on occasion be expected to work together, critiquing and editing each other's work to produce a collaborative finished version. Techniques for discovering domain-specific knowledge and translating technical terminology will be explored and developed. Assessment will be by three test translations in different domains done through the year under exam conditions (2 hours with dictionaries and/or electronic resources), each counting for 25% of the marks of the module, plus one Terminology Project or Wikipedia Project counting for the final 25%.

  • MLFM60 Advanced English-French Translation for MA Exchange Students

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