Bruno Perreau, who was recently promoted to Associate Professor of French studies in Global Studies and Languages, has received a Stanford Humanities Center External Faculty Fellowship for 2014-’15.
The Stanford Humanities Center is a multidisciplinary research institute dedicated to advancing knowledge about culture, philosophy, history, and the arts. The center chose Perreau from among 330 applicants for the fellowship, which enables scholars to pursue individual research and writing for the full academic year while contributing to the Stanford community through workshops, lectures, and courses.
“Becoming a fellow in one of the most prestigious humanities centers in the country means a lot to me,” says Perreau, whose research centers on the development of gay and lesbian studies in France. “I feel that my approach, which combines the social sciences and the humanities, is not only understood, but also recognized at the highest level.”
Perreau plans to spend his time at Stanford working on a book on queer theory and its influence on France. “I will trace the politics of academic translation, as well as the many uses of the word ‘queer’ by radical activist groups,” he says. “I will also investigate the conservative uses of ‘queer’ against minority politics.”
In France, the debate over gay rights has been tinged with fear about both the homosexual “contagion” and the Americanization of French society, according to Perreau. “My new book will deconstruct this complex rhetoric, and will show how it is connected to French anti-communitarianism, secularism, and debates on national identity,” he says.
Perreau joined the MIT faculty in 2010 with a Ph.D. in political science from Panthéon-Sorbonne University in Paris. He is the author of several books on gay and lesbian studies in France, family policies, as well as the institutions of the French Fifth Republic and of the United-States. His latest book The Politics of Adoption: Gender and the Making of French Citizenship will be published by the MIT Press in May 2014.
Story prepared by MIT SHASS Communications
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