Dr Céline Sabiron

Eighteenth- and nineteenth-century literature (in particular the transition between the two periods), especially the workings of literary forms in narrative fictions through the concept of cosmopolitanism. I seek to challenge the definition of national literature, my main focus being translation, both in the sense of a change of languages, and of a transmission between two cultures (French and English). Authors I have written on include Walter Scott, Robert Burns, W.M.Thackeray, H.G.Wels, Balzac, and Jules Verne.

Eighteen- and nineteenth-century literature and translation. Undergraduate (1st-year tutorials on an overview of Romantic and Victorian literature, Introduction to Romantic poetry for visiting students, Gothic and Sentimental literature, and Continuing Education online (Jane Austen; Trollope, Eliot, Dickens, and Hardy; 19th-century European literature), and class teaching on “Bad Girls in 19th-Century Literature”. I have also designed a translation course for the Department for Continuing Education, and a lecture course for the English Faculty entitled "Romanticism without Borders" where I analysed the literary interactions between English and French literature (through the medium of translation) in the late eighteenth, early nineteenth centuries.

My main and larger research project at the moment proposes to rethink the relationship between English and French literature through the prism of translation (using the history of ideas and the history of the book), with Scott and Balzac as a central case study (from English to French Romanticism). I propose to place emphasis on the long-standing special connections between the two countries to evaluate Walter Scott’s widespread influence on key nineteenth-century French novelists (Balzac, Hugo, Stendhal, Sand, and Dumas) by questioning the role of Auguste-Jean-Baptiste Defauconpret – Scott’s official translator – as the biased conveyer of Scott’s voice across the Channel. I am also particularly interested in the way 19th-century French literature was in turn filtered back into Victorian literature (in the work of George Eliot for instance), and the literature of the British Fin de Siècle (with H.G. Wells). Two essays on the shaping of Victorian fiction writing will be coming out soon, and I intend to have a monograph finished by 2016.

College website: https://www.wolfson.ox.ac.uk/celine-sabiron


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