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John McKeane

  • In 2024-25 I am on research leave as winner of a UoR university research fellowship.
  • Research Division Lead (Modern Languages and Linguistics)
  • Membership Secretary (Society for French Studies)
  • External examiner (King’s College London)
  • French studies representative (University Council for Languages)


Miller G16

Building location

Miller Building

Areas of interest

My research is based in French studies. My original training was in French literature, and I took this in the direction of literary theory (deconstruction, post-structuralism, psychoanalysis). Soon enough this led on to continental philosophy (aesthetics, phenomenology), and I still work in all these areas. I also work on cultural studies – I teach contemporary pop music, have published on education/the baccalaureate, and am interested in plant humanities and alternative agriculture (all in a French setting).

I have also published in translation studies, and maintain an active profile as a translator. My translations include four books, notably Christophe Bident’s ambitious 632-page Maurice Blanchot: a Critical Biography (2018).

I am the author of Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe: (Un)timely Meditations (2015), and I was co-editor of two collective volumes, Blanchot romantique (2010) and Sarah Kofman and the Relief of Philosophy (2021). Beyond this I have published on French writers and thinkers including Maurice Blanchot, Jacques Derrida, Jean-Luc Nancy, Emmanuel Levinas, Roland Barthes, and Barbara Cassin,

I am currently working on my second monograph, Sarah Kofman and Ancient Thought: Learning to Live at Last. This is under contract with OUP, and will examine Kofman’s readings of ancient thought via Nietzsche, as well as her interactions with her close collaborators Derrida, Nancy, and Lacoue-Labarthe.

Postgraduate supervision

I welcome enquiries about starting PhD studies in my areas of expertise. I am currently supervising the following projects: 

  • Assya Belahamar Louazani, ‘The Women’s Hammam: an Experienced Space of Representation in Maghrebi Literature & film’ (completed)
  • Nawal Sulaiman Alfozan, ‘Exploring Post-colonial Translation Strategies: the case of Arabic Fiction in English’
  • Lenah Abdullah Alsohebani, ‘The Dubbing of Disney Films into Egyptian Dialect and Modern Standard Arabic’ 
  • Christos Salatelis, ‘Landscape Art: Teaching Children Environmentalism and Democracy through Art in Britain, 1938-54’ 


I teach a variety of French language and translation modules, as well as French and comparative cultural modules. I am also convenor of the following modules:

  • FR2HTF 'How to Think in French'
  • FR3PM ‘French Popular Music and Society’

Selected publications

Details of publications not listed below (translations, reviews, and others) are available at Philosophy, Education, Citizenship.


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