Lewis C. SeifertProfessor of French Studies, Chair of French Studies
Lewis Seifert holds a DEA from the Université de Paris III (1986) and a PhD from the Department of Romance Languages at the University of Michigan (1989). He has taught in the Department of French Studies at Brown since 1989. His ongoing research interests include seventeenth-century French literature and culture, folk- and fairy-tale studies, gender and sexuality studies.
“Ute Heidemann and Jean-Michel Adam, Textualité et intertextualité des contes: Perrault, Apulée, La Fontaine, Lhéritier... (Paris: Garnier, 2010)” Marvels and Tales: Journal of Fairy-Tale Studies 28.1 (2014): 196-99.
“Théophile et l’herméneutique de l’amitié masculine,” XVIIe siècle 258 (2013): 107-16.
“Animal-Human Hybridity in d’Aulnoy’s Babiole and Prince Wild Boar,” Marvels and Tales: Journal of Fairy-Tale Studies 25.2 (2011): 244-60.
Co-Editor and Co-Translator with Domna Stanton, Enchanted Eloquence: Fairy Tales by Seventeenth-Century French Women Writers. The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe, The Toronto Series, 9. Toronto: Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, 2010.
Manning the Margins: Masculinity and Writing in Seventeenth-Century France Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2009.
Co-author with Todd Reeser, "Introduction: Marking French and Francophone Masculinities," Entre Hommes: French and Francophone Masculinities in Culture and Theory Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2008. 13-50.
Entries on Patrick Chamoiseau; Birago Diop; Feminist Tales; French Canadian Tales; Gay and Lesbian Fairy Tales; Pierre Gripari; Négritude, Créolité and Folklore; Sex and Sexuality for The Encyclopedia of Folk- and Fairy Tales, ed. Donald Haase (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2008).
Co-Editor with Todd Reeser, Entre Hommes: French and Francophone Masculinities in Culture and Theory Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2008.
"Entre l'écrit et l'oral: la réception des contes de fées 'classiques'" in Le conte en ses paroles: la figuration de l'oralité dans le conte merveilleux du Classicisme aux Lumières, ed. Anne Defrance and Jean-François Perrin (Paris: Desjonquères, 2007), 21-33.
"Comments on Fairy Tales and Oral Tradition," Marvels and Tales: Journal of Fairy-Tale Studies Vol. 20, No. 2 (2006): 276-279.
Afterword for The Misanthrope and Other Plays by Molière, trans. Donald Frame. Signet Classics (New York: New American Library/Penguin, 2005) 511-519.
"Une révolution nommée Shrek,"La Grande Oreille, special issue "On tourne! Contes en mouvement," ed. Catherine Velay-Vallantin, no. 26 (December 2005): 54-59.
"Féeries: Etudes sur le conte merveilleux, XVIIe-XIXe siècle, no. 1," Marvels and Tales: Journal of Fairy-Tale Studies Vol. 19, No. 1 (2005): 133-137.
"Boisrobert's cabinet and the Seventeenth-Century Closet," Intersections: Actes de Dartmouth, ed. Faith Beasley and Kathleen Wine. Biblio 17, 161 (Tübingen: Gunter Narr Verlag, 2005) 261-270.
"The Male Writer and the 'Marked' Self in Seventeenth-Century France: The Case of the Abbé de Boisrobert," Early Modern France, no. 9 (2004): 125-42.
"Madame Le Prince de Beaumont and the Infantilization of the Fairy Tale," French Literature Series, Vol. XXXI (2004): 25-39.
Co-author with Todd Reeser, "Oscillating Masculinity in Pierre Bourdieu's La Domination masculine," L'Esprit Créateur Vol. XLIII, No. 3 (Fall 2003): 87-97.
Co-Editor with Todd Reeser, French Masculinities. Special Issue of L'Esprit Créateur Vol. XLIII, No. 3 (Fall 2003).
"Tales," Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment, ed. Alan Charles Kors (New York: Oxford University Press, 2002)
"Pig or Prince? Murat, d'Aulnoy, and the Limits of 'Civilized' Masculinity." High Anxiety: Masculinity in Crisis in Early Modern France, ed. Kathleen Perry Long, Sixteenth Century Essays & Studies, 59. (Kirksville, MO: Truman State UP, 2002). 183-209.
"Orality, History and 'Creoleness' in Patrick Chamoiseau's Creole Folktales." Marvels and Tales: A Journal of Fairy Tale Studies 16.2 (2002): 214-30.
"Geneviève Calame-Griaule, ed. and trans., Contes tendres, contes cruels du Sahel nigérien (Paris: Gallimard, 2002)," Marvels and Tales: Journal of Fairy-Tale Studies, Vol. 18, No. 1 (2004): 116-118.
"L'Homme de ruelle chez les dames: Civility and Masculinity in the Salon." Biblio 17: Actes de New Orleans. Paris, Seattle, Tübingen: Papers on French Seventeenth Century Literature, 2001.
"Elizabeth Wanning Harries, Twice upon a Tale: Women and the History of the Fairy Tale (Princeton: Princeton UP, 2001)," Modern Language Quarterly Vol. 65, No. 2 (June 2004): 301-304.
"Masculinity and Satires of 'Sodomites' in France, 1660-1715." Journal of Homosexuality Vol. 41 No. 3/4 (2001): 37-52.
Essays on d'Aulnoy, d'Auneuil, Bernard, Bernis, Chamoiseau, Choisy, Cocteau, Crébillon, Debussy, Diderot, Durand, Fagnan, Fénelon, Fleutiaux, Fairy Tale in France (5000 words), Galland, Giraudoux, Gomez, Hamilton, La Force, La Morlière, Le Noble, Levesque, Lhéritier, Lintot, Lubert, Maeterlinck, Mailly, Mayer, Mélusine, Moncrif, Nodot, Préchac, Princess Bride, Rousseau, Villeneuve, Voisenon, Yellow Dwarf for Oxford Companion to the Fairy Tale, Jack Zipes, Editor-in-Chief. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000)
"On Fairy Tales, Subversion, and Ambiguity: Feminist Approaches to the Seventeenth-Century French Contes de fées." Marvels and Tales: A Journal of Fairy Tale Studies 14.1 (2000): 80-98; slightly revised version reprinted in Fairy Tales and Feminism: New Approaches, ed. Donald Haase. Series in Fairy-Tale Studies. Detroit: Waynes State University Press, 2004. 53-71.
Essays on d'Aulnoy, Bernard, Deshoulières, Fairy Tale, La Force, Lhéritier, and Murat for A Feminist Companion to French Literature, Ed. Eva Sartori (Greenwood Press, 1999)
"Masculinity in La Princesse de Clèves," Approaches to Teaching La Princesse de Clèves, Ed. Faith Beasley and Katharine Jensen (New York: MLA, 1998) 60-67.
"Création et réception des conteuses: du XVIIe au XVIIIe siècle," Tricentenaire Charles Perrault: les grands contes du XVIIe siècle et leur fortune littéraire, Ed. Jean Perrot, Collection lectures d'enfance (Paris: In-Press, 1998) 191-202.
"A Genealogy of Manners: Transformations of Social Relations in France and England from the Fourteenth to the Eighteenth Century by Jorge Arditi (Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1998)," Cahiers du Dix-Septième Vol. VIII, No. 1 (2005): 174-176.
"Abby E. Zanger, Scenes from the Marriage of Louis XIV: Nuptial Fictions and the Making of Absolutist Power (Stanford: Stanford UP, 1997)," L'Esprit Créateur 29.4 (Winter 1999): 163-164.
"Marvelous Realities: Reading the Marvelous in Seventeenth-Century French Fairy Tales." Out of the Woods: The Origins of the Fairy Tales in Italy and France, Ed. Nancy Canepa (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1997)
Fairy Tales, Sexuality, and Gender in France, 1690-1715: Nostalgic Utopias. Cambridge Studies in French, 55. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996; 2006 (paperback)
"Philip Lewis, Seeing through the Mother Goose Tales: Visual Turns in the Writings of Charles Perrault." (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1996), French Forum 23.3 (September 1998): 373-375.
"Eroticizing the Fronde: Sexual Deviance and Political Disorder in the Mazarinades." L'Esprit Créateur Vol. 35, No. 2 (Summer 1995): 22-36
"Les Fées Modernes: Women, Fairy Tales, and the Literary Field in Late Seventeenth-Century France." Going Public: Women and Publishing in Early Modern France, Eds. Elizabeth Goldsmith and Dena Goodman (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1995) 129-145.
"Carnival as Dialogue: Elite and Popular Languages in Pamphlet Discourse." Papers on French Seventeenth Century Literature Vol. 21, No. 40 (1994): 131-144.
"Tales of Difference: Infantilization and the Recuperation of Class and Gender in 17th-Century Contes de fées." Biblio 17: Actes de Las Vegas, Ed. Marie-France Hilgar, Vol. 60. (Paris; Seattle; Tübingen: Papers on French Seventeenth-Century Literature, 1991) 179-94.
Essay on Marie-Catherine d'Aulnoy for Fifty French Women Writers, Eds. Eva Sartori and Dorothy Zimmerman (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1991) 11-20.
"Joan DeJean, Fictions of Sappho: 1546-1937. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1989" L'Esprit Créateur 30.3 (Fall 1990): 83-4.
"Female Empowerment and Its Limits: The Conteuses' Active Heroines." Cahiers du Dix-Septième: An Interdisciplinary Journal Vol. 4, No. 2 (1990): 17-34.
"The Rhetoric of Invraisemblance: Lhéritier's 'Les Enchantements de l'éloquence.'" Cahiers du Dix-Septième: An Interdisciplinary Journal Vol. 3, No. 1 (1989): 121-39.
"Disguising the Storyteller's Voice: On Perrault's Recuperation of the Fairy Tale." Cincinnati Romance Review Vol. 8 (1989): 13-23.
"Marlies Kronegger, The Life Significance of French Baroque Poetry. New York: Peter Lang, 1988" Cahiers du Dix-Septième: An Interdisciplinary Journal 3.2 (Fall 1989): 183-85.
"L'Escorse et la Mouele: res/verbum et la représentation du moi dans 'De la vanité.'" Iris Vol. 2, No. 2 (Winter 1986-87): 7-26.
Professor Seifert's research interests include 17th-century literature, gender and sexuality studies, cultural studies, and comparative approaches to folklore and the literary fairy tale. He is the author of Fairy Tales, Sexuality, and Gender in France, 1690-1715: Nostalgic Utopias (1996) and of Manning the Margins: Masculinity and Writing in Seventeenth-Century France (University of Michigan Press, 2009). He has co-edited volumes on French and Francophone masculinities with Todd Reeser; on fairy tales by 17th-century French women with Domna Stanton; on gender, sexuality, and friendship in early modern France with Rebecca Wilkin. He has also edited a special issue of Marvels and Tales on "Queer(ing) Fairy Tales."
Lewis Seifert's teaching and research encompass two broad areas: seventeenth-century French culture and folk- and fairy-tale narratives. He has a particular focus on questions of gender and sexuality, both theoretically and historically; but he has also explored problems of early modern authorship, political discourse, and friendship.
In his first book, Fairy Tales, Sexuality, and Gender in France, 1690-1715: Nostalgic Utopias (Cambridge UP, 1996), he explored reasons why the fairy tale genre appeared in late seventeenth-century France and in particular its ambivalent representations of femininity, masculinity, and (hetero)sexuality. He argues that the "marvelous" universe of the conte de fées is a throwback to earlier fictional forms that often allows for a critique of the past and an articulation of yet-to-be conceived identities and relations.
His second book, Manning the Margins: Masculinity and Writing in Seventeenth-Century France (University of Michigan Press, 2009), investigates the struggle between the expectation of dominance and the risk of subservience and marginality that emerges in such seventeenth-century masculine types as the honnête homme, the male salon denizen, the sodomite, and the transvestite.
He is currently working on two different projects. The first, whose working title is Classical Modernities: Confronting Past and Present in Seventeenth-Century France, brings to bear insights from a variety of contemporary thinkers in an investigation of the multiple connections and ruptures between the (early modern French) past and the (French and American) present. The second is a study of adaptations of world folklore traditions in French and Francophone fairy tales since 1690, provisionally entitled Telling Alterity: Folk- and Fairy Tales in French, 1690 to 2010.
Seifert has co-edited several volumes: (with Rebecca Wilkin) Men and Women Making Friends in Early Modern France. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2015; (with Domna Stanton) Enchanted Eloquence: Fairy Tales by Seventeenth-Century French Women Writers. The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe, The Toronto Series, 9. Toronto: Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, 2010; (with Todd Reeser) Entre Hommes: French and Francophone Masculinities in Culture and Theory Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2008; (with Todd Reeser) French Masculinities. Special Issue of L'Esprit Créateur Vol. XLIII, No. 3 (Fall 2003). He has also edited a special issue of Marvels and Tales on "Queer(ing) Fairy Tales" (2015). With Gretchen Schultz he is preparing a volume of selected translations of late 19th-century French fairy tales for Princeton University Press.
Research Grant, Office of the Vice-President for Research, Brown University, 2004; 2005; 2006; 2008; 2013; 2014
Salomon Grant, Brown University, 2003
Curricular Development Grant from the Office of the Dean of the College, Brown University, 1990; 1992; 1994; 1996; 1998; 2001
Faculty Research Grant from the Salomon Faculty Research Grant Fund, Brown University, 2000
University Small Grant, Office of Research, Brown University, 1993
Undergraduate Teaching and Research Awards (UTRA), research assistant, Dean of the College, Brown University, 1991; 1992
Travel Grant, Institute for International Studies, Brown University (for use in May-June 1992)
North American Society of Seventeenth-Century French Literature
SE - 17
Recent courses taught include:
Queering the Grand Siècle (graduate seminar)
Les Modernités du XVIIe siècle (graduate seminar)
Civilité et littérature au XVIIe siècle
Fictions du masculin au XVIIe siècle (graduate seminar)
Fairy Tales and Culture
Contes et identités francophones
Molière et son monde
Lire et voir le XVIIe siècle
Le théâtre du XVIIe siècle: de la lecture à la mise en scène
De l'anormal: le monstrueux de la Renaissance à nos jours
FREN 1320G - Contes et identités francophones. Spring 2013, Fall 2015.
FREN 1330A - Fairy Tales and Culture. Fall 2013.
FREN 2130D - Studies in French Literature of the Seventeenth Century: Les Modernités du XVIIe siècle. Spring 2014.
FREN 2130G - Queering the Grand Siècle. Spring 2015.