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Research Statement

My research currently focuses on the representation of criminals and crime in Realist fiction and in the popular press in the late nineteenth century. As part of my Master’s thesis, I studied the representation of the national education system in France during the Third Republic. In particular, I studied the education system as represented in the novel Vérité by Emile Zola and Les Déracinés by Maurice Barrès. These novels represent national education as a crucial aspect of perceived shortcomings and failures of the French Republican system, even while establishing the novel as its own form of national education. In the current scholarship on these two authors, there has been little written on the connection between the narrative strategies and representations of students and teachers within the education system. During the course of writing this thesis, I became most intrigued by what I perceive as the influence of journalistic narrative strategies in each text. To date, there has been very little literature on this narrative influence in these novels, despite the fact that both authors were prolific journalists and both fictionalized true events in order to engage with the Republican system and its perceived failures.

I am continuing to research the influence that journalism and widespread literacy had on the novel. I will also pursue the representations of crime and justice. In future, I will extend my inquiry to the detective genre, as well as to the influence of photography and the fait divers on the French novel of the Third Republic.

Curriculum Vitae

Curriculum Vitae Cara Bailey


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