Welcome to the ePortfolio of Jonathan Durham
I am a second-year PhD student in the Department of French Studies at the University of Warwick, UK.
My research focuses on French literature from the 17th and 18th centuries, specifically examining women playwrights from 1650 to 1750. A short absract of the project is provided below, and is covered in more detail in the Research section of this site. You can also find information relating to my Teaching and Professional development.
If you have any further questions or suggestions relating to my research, please feel free to contact me using the details on the on the right.
Abstract of PhD
Théâtre de femmes de l’Ancien Régime : étude esthétique et analyse herméneutique
My research examines why French women playwrights from the 17th and 18th centuries have been neglected from the canon (what is considered to be ‘good literature’) both then and in modern criticism. Theatre of the period is dominated by the French equivalents of Shakespeare: Molière, Racine, and Corneille. Female authors are ignored, despite being innovating in their aesthetic, and pioneering for women’s theatre (first to have plays published, performed by professional actors). At the time, women playwrights faced offensive comments from male contemporaries, and any ‘good plays’ would be attributed to male authors. This has been mirrored in modern criticism. This thesis argues that the exclusion of early modern women playwrights from the canon is artificial, and seeks to address it by promoting their work, and discovering the lost female tradition.