Welcome

This is the website of John Patrick Walsh, an Assistant Professor in the French Department. I teach beginning and intermediate French language classes, as well as an Introduction to Francophone Literature. I also teach special topics courses in Caribbean Studies, especially on the history and literature of Haiti.

My research engages three fronts. My book, Free and French in the Caribbean: Toussaint Louverture, Aimé Césaire, and Narratives of Loyal Opposition (forthcoming with Indiana University Press in February 2013), examines the historical connection between the Haitian Revolution and the departmentalization of the French Caribbean through the diverse writings of Toussaint and Césaire. Its overarching themes are the conflict between the expression of universal rights and the assertion of national sovereignty, and the colonial underpinnings of French republicanism.

I am also interested in contemporary Haitian literature; in particular, I am focused on the question of the ethical responsibilities of the writer in times of political and ecological crisis.

Finally, I work on francophone literature whose itineraries move between Sub-Saharan Africa and Europe, especially France. Recent work analyzes the novels of Alain Mabanckou and Léonora Miano, contemporary novelists whose protagonists navigate the mental and physical landscapes of black cultural and political experiences in Paris.