BA, DEA, PhD
British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow, Junior Research Fellow in French

Academic Background

After completing a PhD degree at Paris 8 and University of Montreal in early modern French literature and culture, I fulfilled a first postdoctoral fellowship in Oxford (LMH-FQRSC), during which I organised several study-days including Thinking Genius, Using Genius, with Prof Ann Jefferson (New College), followed by a special issue of the journal L’Esprit créateur (Johns Hopkins Uni. Press). I also worked as a research assistant at the Voltaire Foundation, where I contributed to the edition of the Voltaire’s Catalogue des écrivains in Le Siècle de Louis XIV.

Undergraduate Teaching Areas

French, early modern French literature.

Research interests

My research deals with the history of values and the practices of sociability in the early modern period. Focussing on the history of genius, my thesis has been published at Éditions Classiques Garnier in 2015 (L’Exception exemplaire – Inventions et usages du génie, XVIe-XVIIIe siècle). I am currently working on the cultural and literary history of frivolity, in relation with luxury, gender, national representations and the question of usefulness in 17th and 18th century France. I have published several articles on libertinism, materialism, genius and invention, fashion and satirical literature. I am also coediting two collective volumes: on the paradigm of lightness in the 18th-century France, and on the social uses of perfume.

See also: https://oxford.academia.edu/JeanAlexandrePerras

Other interests

Smell studies and history of perfume.
Fencing (foil).

Links

Subject notes for courses taught at Jesus College: