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Dr Douglas Morrey

Dr Douglas MorreyAssociate Professor and Reader

Email: D dot J dot Morrey at warwick dot ac dot uk

Fourth Floor, Faculty of Arts Building
University of Warwick


Contemporary French literature

I am the author of a highly cited monographLink opens in a new window on the controversial French novelist Michel Houellebecq and have also published several articles and reviewed or examined countless academic articles, book manuscripts and doctoral theses on Houellebecq's work.

Building on this research, I am now developing work on 'toxic masculinity' in contemporary French literature with a particular focus on the generation of 1968, especially Philippe Sollers, Serge Doubrovsky and Gabriel Matzneff.

French cinema

I have published extensively on the cinema of the French New Wave, in particular Jean-Luc GodardLink opens in a new window, Jacques RivetteLink opens in a new window and the legacy of the New Wave in French cinemaLink opens in a new window. I have also written repeatedly about Claire Denis and have an article currently in print on Denis's work with stars. My interest in film stars, film acting and the direction of actors is long-standing and on-going and I have recently written about the midlife roles of Juliette Binoche.


With Professor Bradley StephensLink opens in a new window from the University of Bristol, I am co-organising a research network dedicated to the study of masculinities in contemporary France. With colleagues from the UK, the USA and France, this project seeks to explore the changing articulations, representations and challenges of masculinity in French culture and society in the twenty-first century.

Neoliberalism and cultural critique

With Professor Oliver DavisLink opens in a new window, I am co-organising a day symposium dedicated to Le Manifeste conspirationnisteLink opens in a new window, its critique of France's pandemic response and its broader challenge to the tyranny of neoliberal consensus. This event is intended to feed into a broader project examining the specificity of the French critical response to neoliberalism, with particular focus on public health policy.

Teaching and supervision

I specialise in teaching French cinema and contemporary French literature.

I also teach final-year French translation classes.

I have supervised Masters and PhD-level work on both French cinema and contemporary French writing and am happy to receive expressions of interest for future projects in these areas. Current and past doctoral projects under my supervision have included: French horror cinema; single-parent families in French cinema; representation and critique of neoliberalism in contemporary French literature; violence and vulnerability in contemporary queer French fiction; the postcolonial and the post-industrial in contemporary French literature; the novels of Jean-Philippe Toussaint.



  • The Legacy of the New Wave in French Cinema, New York: Bloomsbury, 2019.

  • Michel Houellebecq: Humanity and its Aftermath, Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2013.
  • Jacques Rivette, Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2009. Co-authored with Alison Smith.
  • Jean-Luc Godard, Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2005.

Articles and book chapters

  • ‘Vanessa Springora, Gabriel Matzneff and the Problem of Consent’, Nottingham French Studies 61.3 (2022): 240-55.

  • ‘From Confusion to Conversion: Listening to the Narrative Voice of Michel Houellebecq’s Submission’, Poetics Today 41:3 (2020): 347-367.

  • ‘“La Nouvelle Vague, elle t’emm---!”: Louis Malle, Zazie dans le métro and the French New Wave’, Modern & Contemporary France 27.4 (2019): 493-503.

  • ‘The Forest for the Trees: Political Contexts for Godard’s Nature Imagery in Film socialisme and Adieu au langage’, Studies in French Cinema 19.1 (2019): 55-68.

  • 'The Banality of Monstrosity: On Michel Houellebecq's Soumission', Australian Journal of French Studies 55:2 (2018): 202-217.
  • 'The rough and the smooth: Narrative, character and performance in Fingers (1978) and De battre mon coeur s'est arrêté (2005)', Studies in French Cinema 16.3 (2016).
  • ‘Claire Denis’, ‘Film’ and ‘Abbas Kiarostami’, entries in The Nancy Dictionary, ed. by Peter Gratton and Marie-Eve Morin, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2015.

  • 'The Lost Art of Keeping a Secret: Jacques Rivette's Film Criticism for Arts', Film Criticism 39: 1 (2014), pp. 51-66.
  • ‘Stillness and Slowness in the Work of Michel Houellebecq’, Irish Journal of French Studies 14 (2014), pp. 1-22.
  • ‘Jean-Luc Godard, Christophe Honoré and the Legacy of the New Wave in French Cinema’, in Douglas Morrey, Christina Stojanova and Nicole Côté (eds), The Legacies of Jean-Luc Godard (Waterloo, ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2014), pp. 3-14.
  • 'Le Creux de la vague: Authorship, Adaptation and Sexuality in Les Godelureaux (1961)', Modern & Contemporary France 21:4 (2013), pp. 419-34.
  • ‘To Describe a Labyrinth: Dialectics in Jacques Rivette’s Film Theory and Film Practice’, Film-Philosophy 16:1 (2012), pp. 30-54.
  • ‘Natural and Anti-Natural Evolution: Genetics and Schizophrenia in Maurice G. Dantec’s Babylon Babies’, L’Esprit créateur, 52: 2 (2012), pp. 114-26.
  • ‘Houellebecq, Genetics and Evolutionary Psychology’, in Simon James and Nicholas Saul (eds), The Evolution of Literature: Legacies of Darwin in European Cultures (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2011), pp. 227-38.
  • ‘Perfect Crime, Absolute Evil: In the Vortex with Baudrillard and Dantec’, Cultural Politics, 7:3 (2011), pp. 431-444.

  • ‘To Elicit and Elude: The Film Writing of Keith Reader’, in Will Higbee and Sarah Leahy (eds), Studies in French Cinema: UK Perspectives 1985-2010 (Bristol: Intellect, 2011), pp. 191-201.

  • 'Secrets and Lies, or How (Not) to Write about Jacques Rivette', Australian Journal of French Studies, 47, 2 (2010), pp. 121-32.

  • ‘Michel Houellebecq’, entry in The Literary Encyclopedia, first published 17 May 2010,

  • 'Sex and the Single Male: Houellebecq, Feminism and Hegemonic Masculinity', Yale French Studies, 116-117 (2009), pp. 141-52.

  • ‘Listening and Touching, Looking and Thinking: The Dialogue in Philosophy and Film between Jean-Luc Nancy and Claire Denis’, in Temenuga Trifonova (ed.), European Film Theory ( New York, London: Routledge, 2009), pp. 122-33.

  • ‘Quiet Contradictions of Celebrity: Zinedine Zidane, image, sound, silence and fury’, International Journal of Cultural Studies, 11, 3 (2008), pp. 303-322, article co-authored with Hugh Dauncey.

  • ‘Open Wounds: Body and Image in Jean-Luc Nancy and Claire Denis’, Film-Philosophy, 12, 1 (2008), 10-30.

  • ‘Introduction’, Special Issue: Claire Denis and Jean-Luc Nancy, Film-Philosophy, 12, 1 (2008), i-iv.

  • ‘Dr Schizo: Religion, reaction and Maurice G. Dantec’, Journal of European Studies, 37, 3 (2007), 295-312.

  • ‘Stop the World, or What’s Queer about Michel Houellebecq?’, in Queer Sexualities in French and Francophone Literature and Film, French Literature Series No. 34, New York: Rodopi, 2007.
  • ‘A bout de souffle (Jean-Luc Godard)’, in Phil Powrie (ed.), The Cinema of France, London: Wallflower, 2006, pp. 91-9.
  • ‘“The Acorn Don’t Fall Far from the Tree”: Genealogy and Eternal Return in Mystic River’, Storytelling: A Critical Journal of Popular Narrative, 5, 1, Fall 2005, pp. 41-52.
  • ‘The Noise of Thoughts: The Turbulent (Sound-)Worlds of Jean-Luc Godard’, Culture, Theory and Critique, 46, 1, April 2005, pp. 61-74.
  • ‘An Embarrassment of Riches: Godard and the Aesthetics of Expenditure in Le Rapport Darty’, in Patrick Crowley and Paul Hegarty (eds.), Formless: Ways In and Out of Form, Oxford and Bern: Peter Lang, 2005, pp. 229-237.
  • ‘Textures of Terror: Claire Denis’s Trouble Every Day’, Belphegor: Littérature populaire et culture médiatique, 3, 2, April 2004,
  • ‘Michel Houellebecq and the International Sexual Economy’, Portal: Journal of Multidisciplinary International Studies, 1, 1, 2004,
  • ‘History of Resistance/Resistance of History: Godard’s Éloge de l’amour’, Studies in French Cinema, 3, 2, 2003, pp. 121-130.
  • ‘Tricks and Risks: Hervé Guibert’s L’Incognito, or the Dynamics of Contagion’, in Lucille Cairns (ed.), Gay and Lesbian Cultures in France, Oxford and Bern: Peter Lang, 2002, pp. 247-255.
  • ‘Sida-topies: provocative communities in Guy Hocquenghem’s Ève and Vincent Borel’s Un ruban noir’, French Cultural Studies, 9, 3, 27, October 1998, pp. 385-398.

Review articles

  • Review of A Companion to Jean-Luc Godard (Tom Conley and T. Jefferson Kline, eds.), Movie 6 (2015),
  • Review of Michel Houellebecq: Author of Our Times by John McCann, H-France, 11, 20 (2011),
  • ‘Bodies that Matter: Vivian Sobchack’s Carnal Thoughts’, Film-Philosophy, 10, 2, 2006.


BA, MA, PhD (Warwick)

Office hour

Thursday 9.00 - 10.00

Other meeting times may be available upon request. Please send me an email.

FAB 4.09

Michel Houellebecq book cover

Legacy of the New Wave cover