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Professor Seán Hand

 me2Professor of French Studies | Dean of Warwick in California


Professor Seán Hand is the founding Dean of the University of Warwick in California project. He was previously the founding Head of Warwick's School of Modern Languages and Cultures from 2014 to 2016. He joined the University of Warwick as a Professor of French Studies in 2005, and was Head of the Department of French Studies from 2008 to 2011.


Seán Hand has a B.A. (M.A. Oxon) and a D. Phil. from the University of Oxford, and a MBA and a D.Litt. from the University of Warwick. He is a Chevalier des Palmes Académiques, and a member of the Academia Europaea. He has been an Honorary Professor of Monash University; and a Visiting Fellow at St. Catherine's College, Oxford, and the National University of Singapore. He is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. He is a strategic reviewer for the AHRC, has acted as a member of the AHRC Peer Review College, and has directed national projects funded by the AHRC and by HEFCE. He has been an assessor for the Irish Research Council, the Israel Science Foundation, and the South African National Research Foundation. He sits on several international advisory and editorial boards and is a recognised European Commission expert evaluator. He has been interviewed and consulted by press, radio, television and professional associations about contemporary French society and culture, and international capability.

Academic interests

Seán Hand's teaching covers literature, ideas and related developments from the early twentieth century to the present day, in both a French and a more international context. He supervises Masters and PhD dissertations, and mentors post-doctoral and early career fellows. He invites applications to work with him at doctoral or post-doctoral level, including in the areas of contemporary French theories, ethnographic writing, globalisation theory, Holocaust and post-memory writing, autobiography, cultural identity, and ethics.

Seán Hand's research, which has been funded by the Leverhulme Trust, HEFCE, the AHRC, and the British Academy, examines radical writings in French of the past 100 years. He published the first two monographs in English on the autobiography, ethnography and criticism of Michel Leiris. He then brought the philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas to a wider audience through translations, a Reader, a collection of critical essays, and a monograph on Levinas’s major texts. He more recently edited a major collection of new essays on post-Holocaust France and the Jews. He has additionally written on Derrida, Duras, Grimbert, Jabès, Lacan, Nancy, Stiegler, postmodernism, Jewish writing and historiography; and has translated Blondel, Deleuze, Kristeva, Irigaray, Levinas and Lyotard. He continues to work on theories of crisis and governance, post-genocide representations, and interpretations of Levinas.

Recent publications

Full list of publications.

Email S dot Hand at warwick dot ac dot uk

Room H0.75

Writing the Self

Alter Ego

levinas routledge

routledge face

dif freedom



Levinas Reader


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