Archives par mot-clé : middlebrow

Isabelle Marc (Université Complutense de Madrid, Espagne)

Maîtresse de conférences HDR à l’Université Complutense de Madrid, Isabelle Marc enseigne la culture française contemporaine et la traduction littéraire. Dans sa recherche, elle s’intéresse aux musiques et aux littératures mainstream, dans leurs rapports à l’esthétique (populaire, élevée, moyenne), à l’identité (nationale, de genre, de race) et aux phénomènes de transculturalité dans le contexte européen (transferts musicaux et diplomatie musicale).

Du point de vue des études culturelles et des études de genre, elle a publié de nombreux travaux sur les auteurs-compositeurs-interprètes (ACI) français et les musiques actuelles en France dans des revues telles que Modern & Contemporary FranceFrench Cultural StudiesBelphégor ou Volume ! La revue des musiques populaires, et aussi sur des écrivaines contemporaines, notamment sur Virginie Despentes. Elle a récemment co-dirigé trois volumes collectifs : The Singer-Songwriter in Europe : Paradigms, Politics and Place (Routledge, 2016) ; Canon et écrits de femmes en France et en Espagne dans l’actualité (2011-2016) (Peter Lang, 2020) et Carmen revisitée/Revisiter Carmen (Peter Lang, 2020). En 2014-2015, elle a obtenu une Leverhulme Research Fellowship pour étudier les transferts musicaux dans leurs rapports aux politiques culturelles publiques à l’université de Leeds (Royaume-Uni), où elle co-dirige l’European Popular Musics Research Group ( Elle dirige la revue Thélème. Revista Complutense de Estudios Franceses ainsi que le Groupe de recherches en études littéraires et culturelles et études de genre de l’université Complutense de Madrid.

Elle est actuellement Fellow USIAS à l’Université de Strasbourg pour un projet intitulé « Les divas pop : musiques actuelles, représentations et genre à l’ère numérique en France » :

CV complet :

ORCID number: Continuer la lecture de Isabelle Marc (Université Complutense de Madrid, Espagne)

Parution : Diana Holmes, Middlebrow Matters

Diana Holmes, Middlebrow Matters

Women’s reading and the literary canon in France since the Belle Époque, Liverpool University Press, 2018

This is the first book to study the middlebrow novel in France. Middlebrow is a derogatory word that connotes blandness, mediocrity and a failed aspiration to ‘high’ culture. However, when appropriated as a positive term to denote that wide swathe of literature between the challenging experimentalism of the high and the formulaic tendency of the popular, it enables a rethinking of the literary canon from the point of view of what most readers actually read, a criterion curiously absent from dominant definitions of literary value. Since women have long formed a majority of the reading public, this perspective immediately feminises what has always been a very male canon. Opening with a theorisation of the concept of middlebrow that mounts a defence of some literary qualities disdained by modernism, the book then focuses on a series of case studies of periods (the Belle Époque, inter-war, early twenty-first century), authors (including Colette, Irène Nemirovsky, Françoise Sagan, Anna Gavalda) and the middlebrow nature of literary prizes. It concludes with a double reading of a single text, from the perspective of an academic critic, and from that of a middlebrow reader.

Diana Holmes is Professor of French at the University of Leeds.

Parution : “Belphégor : Middlebrow”


Belphégor 15-2, Décembre 2017

The term ‘middlebrow’ has a strong negative charge. It suggests middle-of-the-road, compromise and insipidity, middle class in an aspirational and snobbish way. The metaphor on which it is based refers back to the discredited nineteenth-century science of phrenology: a high forehead or brow was believed to denote intelligence, a low one its opposite. The hierarchy of brows, however, is not straightforward, for if the ‘high’ and ‘low’ at least have the dignity of the extreme, ‘middlebrow’ is charged with all the opprobrium that attaches to the norm, the median, the merely average. Recently, however, middlebrow culture in Britain and the United States has become the object of scholarly interest and the term has started to be reclaimed as something more than a dismissive epithet. The English word, with all its derogatory connotations, is – as far as we know – unmatched in any other language hence never quite translatable. Yet the phenomenon of the middlebrow itself surely extends beyond Anglophone cultures, and in this volume our aim is to explore the concept’s wider international relevance to cultural history and to the present. We will begin with an outline history of the term itself and its recent critical renaissance in Anglophone scholarship, then introduce the articles collected here through a brief discussion of the questions they collectively address, and the value of this international perspective for the study of the middlebrow.

Diana Holmes Continuer la lecture de Parution : “Belphégor : Middlebrow”