Dr Catherine Gilbert


My research interests lie primarily in postcolonial African literatures and cultures, with a particular focus on cultural memory, trauma and narrative. My PhD examined the testimonial literature of Rwandan women genocide survivors and a monograph based on my thesis, entitled From Surviving to Living: Voice, Trauma and Witness in Rwandan Women’s Writing, is forthcoming with the Presses universitaires de la Méditerranée (2018). I am currently developing a new project focusing on commemorative practices and cultural responses to genocide in the Rwandan diaspora, working primarily with communities based in the UK and Belgium.

I am the Associate Editor of the interdisciplinary journal Francosphères, published biannually with Liverpool University Press.

 Postcolonial and World Literatures, particularly sub-Saharan Anglophone and Francophone African authors.


I obtained my PhD in French and Francophone Studies from the University of Nottingham in 2014, where I then held a one-year Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, working on the AHRC-funded project ‘Building Images: Exploring 21st century Sino-African dynamics through cultural exchange and translation’. In 2015-2016 I was the Postdoctoral Research Officer in the new Centre for Postcolonial Studies at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, where I had primary responsibility for organising the activities of the Centre and setting up an academic network in Postcolonial Studies. For the academic year 2016-2017, I was a Teaching Fellow in Comparative Literature and English at King’s College London, convening and teaching undergraduate courses on Testimony (the Holocaust and Rwanda), African Literature (Anglophone and Francophone) and Travel Writing, and leading postgraduate sessions on postcolonial theory. I have also worked as a Translator (French-English, Spanish-English) and as a Learning Support Assistant for students with disabilities.


  • From Surviving to Living: Voice, Trauma and Witness in Rwandan Women's Writing

  • Francophone Postcolonial Studies in the 21st Century

  • (Mis)Leading Paratexts: Translating Rwanda for the West

  • China Corner: Chinese Book Donations to Africa

  • Chinese Literature in Africa: Meaningful or Simply Ceremonial?

  • More
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