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Professor Michael Sheringham

BA, MA, PhD, FBA, Officier, Ordre des Palmes Académiques
Emeritus Fellow since 2015
I work on modern and contemporary French literature, in the fields of intellectual history and the analysis of literary forms. In the past I have focused on avant-garde poetry and fiction, and on the practice of autobiography in France. After autobiography, I looked at how the concept of the everyday came to be conceptualised by twentieth-century French thinkers and writers. I am currently completing a similar project on how the term ‘archive’ has come to play a central role in recent thought and creative practice.


  • Marshal Foch Professor of French Literature and University Academic Fellow, All Souls College (from 2004 to 2015)
  • Professor of French, Royal Holloway, University of London (from 1995 to 2004)
  • Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and latterly Professor of French Literature, University of Kent at Canterbury (from 1974 to 1995)
  • Lecturer in French, NUI (from 1973 to 1974)
  • Undergraduate and Postgraduate, University of Kent at Canterbury (from 1966 to 1973)

Research interests

  • French literature and thought
  • André Breton and Surrealism
  • Modern and contemporary poetry
  • Autobiography and related genres
  • Everyday life
  • Archival memory


  • Everyday Life: Theories and Practices from Surrealism to the Present (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006; paperback, 2009; French translation, 2013).
  • French Autobiography: Devices and Desires. Rousseau to Perec (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993).
  • Beckett: Molloy (London: Grant and Cutler, 1985).
  • André Breton: A Bibliography (London: Grant and Cutler, 1972).
  • Link to publications

Other professional memberships and roles

  • Visiting Professor, Collège de France and ENS-Ulm (March-April 2007)
  • Pajus Distinguished Visitor in French Studies, UC Berkeley (August-December 2006)
  • Visiting Lecturer, Institute of French Cultural Studies, Dartmouth College, New Hampshire (2005)
  • Chair, Committee of the Maison Française d’Oxford (from 2006 to 2015)
  • President, Society for French Studies (from 2002 to 2004)
  • Visiting Professor, Université Paris IV-Sorbonne (January-June 2002)
  • Visiting Professor, Université Paris VII-Diderot (Oct 1994-February 1995)
  • Member of French Sub-Panel for RAE 2001 and RAE 2008
  • Editorial Board of French Studies (1999-2009), Contemporary French and Francophone Studies (since 2002), Oxford University Monographs in French Studies (2007-2015), Legenda Monograph Series, Roman 20-50 (since 2012), Modernités (Bordeaux) (since 2012), Revue de fiction littéraire contemporaine (since 2010), and currently seven other journals or book series.
  • Regular Reviewer, Times Literary Supplement since 1986

Research awards and grants

  • Camargo Foundation Fellowship (September-December 2010)
  • Leverhulme Research Award (2009)

Teaching and Supervision

  • Modern French literature and thought