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Position: Lecturer in French Studies

Office: L107

Telephone: +353-61-204377

E-mail: mairead.nibhriain@mic.ul.ie


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Dr. Mairéad Ní Bhriain

I was awarded a Bachelor of Arts in French and Irish in 2001. (National University of Ireland, Galway) I then spent a year in Aix-en-Provence, where I worked as a language assistant, before returning to Galway to complete an MA in French. My MA research culminated in a minor thesis on the well-known Québécois writer, Michel Tremblay. I obtained my PhD in French Studies in February 2009. My doctoral research, which was funded by the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS), focused on the role of the intellectual in post-war French society and the complexities of decolonisation. (Thesis title: The Republic on Trial: Intellectuals and Decolonisation in France (1946-1963)). I taught French at the National University of Ireland, Galway before being being appointed to a permanent position in the School of Languages and Social Sciences at Aston University, Birmingham in August 2009. I am delighted to be returning to my native city of Limerick to take up my new position as Lecturer of French at Mary Immaculate College. Is mór an chúis bhróid dom a rá gur Luimníoch mé agus táim fíor sásta a bheith páirteach i gcur chun cinn na Fraincíse sa cheantar.

I am very happy to supervise students with interest in the areas of french intellectual and colonial history, the relationship between culture and politics, representations of the French Republic, post-war France, and 20th century  French/Francophone literature. Cuirim fáilte freisin roimh mic-léinn le Gaeilge a mbeadh suim acu tionscnamh taighde comparáideach a dhéanamh.

 Academic background
BA in French and Irish (2001); MA in French Literature (2003); PhD in French Studies (2009), National University of Ireland, Galway

Professional affiliations

·         Association des Etudes Françaises et Francophones d'Irlande (ADEFFI)

·         Society for Francophone Postcolonial Studies (SFPS)

·         The Group for War and Cultural Studies (GWACS)

·         Association for Canadian Studies in Ireland (ACSI)

·         French Colonial History Society (FCHS)


Research areas

·         French colonial history & the trials of decolonisation

·         French intellectual history

·         Representations/constructions of the French Republic and national identities

·         The impact and legacies of World War II

·         France as a postcolonial society and the historiography of colonialism

·         Twentieth Century French and Francophone literature


Chapters in Books

·         ‘Le Carnavalesque dans Des nouvelles d’Edouard de Michel Tremblay: A la recherche d’une culture québécoise’, in Máire-Aine Ní Mhainnín and Elizabeth Tilly (eds.), Canada: Text and Territory (Newcastle: Cambridge University Press, 2008).

·         ‘Decoding Justice: Intellectual Discourse and the trial of the Malagasy deputies’, in Antoine Masson and Kevin O’Connor (eds.), Representations of Justice (Luxembourg: Peter Lang, 2007).


·         James Hanrahan and Mairéad Ní Bhriain, ‘Intellectuals and Public Opinion: An Evolving Dynamic’, Irish Journal of French Studies, 10, 2011, p1 – 18.

·         ‘Public Opinion and Passive Complicity during the Algerian War: Simone de Beauvoir and the Djamila Boupacha Affair’, Irish Journal of French Studies, 10, 2011.

Special issues of academic journals

·  James Hanrahan & Mairead Ni Bhriain (eds.), guest editors of Irish Journal of French Studies, no. 10, 2010 (Special Issue, 2011): Intellectuals and Public Opinion: a transhistorical perspective.

Book reviews

 ·         Review of Jim House and Neil MacMaster, Paris 1961, Algerians, State Terror, and Memory (Oxford: Oxford university Press, 2006) in Journal of Contemporary European Studies, July 2007.

Conference papers (* as invited speaker)

·        2010:  Il faut tuer de Gaulle: French opposition to Algerian independence and de Gaulle’s ending of Empire’, paper given at French Colonial History Society (FCHS) conference, Paris, June 2010.         

·         2006 : ‘Le Carnavalesque dans Des nouvelles d’Edouard de Michel Tremblay: A la recherche d’une culture québécoise’, paper given at Association for Canadian Studies in Ireland conference (ACSI) in Galway, April 2006.

·         2005:  ‘Representations and Conceptions of the Theme of Justice in French Intellectual Discourse of Engagement’, paper given at conference on Representations of Justice in France and Ireland, organised by the Trinity School of Law in association with the French Embassy and Le forum des Juristes Francophones (FJF), December 2005.*

·         2005:  Intellectuals and Decolonisation: Madagascar, March 1947’, paper given at The Burn French Studies Conference, Aberdeenshire, October 2005.

·        2005: The Fall of French Colonialism and the Rise of American Hegemony: The voice-role-legacy of the intellectuel engagé, paper given at conference on Cold War France and America: New Perspectives, Institute for Contemporary Francophone Studies, Florida State University, Tallahassee, February 2005.

·         2004: Représentations de la décolonisation française: le discours intellectuel comme “lieu de mémoire”’, paper given at the sixth annual ADEFFI conference, University of Limerick. 

·         2004:  Cycles of Intellectual Engagement and Voids in Postcolonial French Historiography’, paper given at interdisciplinary conference entitled Enemies of Empire, University of Limerick, June 2004.

Talks given as guest lecturer

·         2008:  ‘French female intellectuals and the Algerian war: L’Affaire Djamila Boupacha (1959-1962)’, guest lecture given the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, December 2009.

Conference chairing

·         2009: Chair of plenary session on ‘The dialectic of porte-parole and parole portée’, delivered by Professor Michael Kelly from the University of Southampton at international conference on ‘Intellectuals and Public Opinion’, Galway, 4-5 September 2009.

·         2005: Chair of ‘After the Cold War’, panel 8 of the Cold War France and America: New Perspectives international conference, Institute for Contemporary Francophone Studies, Florida State University Tallahassee, 3-5 February 2005.

Conference organisation

2009: Co-organiser of international bilingual conference on the theme of ‘Les intellectuels et l’opinion publique: de Voltaire à Sartre’, National University of Ireland, Galway, 4-5 September 2009.

Mary Immaculate College, South Circular Road, Limerick, Tel:+35361 204300  V94VN26

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