Sara Wellman is Assistant Professor of French at the University of Mississippi. Her research focuses on early modern French literary representations of the human-nature relationship, including representations of disasters such as earthquakes and floods, as well as “slower” changes brought about by urbanization and pollution. She has taught courses on environmental issues in French and Francophone literature ranging from the medieval period to the twenty-first century. In her research and teaching, her work considers the connections between environment, gender and social class. Two article projects in progress explore how early modern texts continue to influence twenty-first century ways of imagining the human-nature relationship. The first, “Rousseau’s Environmentalism in Pierre Maillard’s La Faute à Rousseau,” considers Rousseau’s environmentalist legacy through an analysis of a collection of short films released in 2012 to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the philosopher’s birth. The second, “Literature and Regional Identity in the Pays d’Astrée,” examines how local political and cultural leaders are currently using Honoré d’Urfé’s seventeenth-century pastoral novel L’Astrée to build a sense of shared identity in the region in which the novel is set.
Image Description: A woman stands in front of a field and pine trees. She smiles at the camera with blue eyes behind tortoiseshell glasses. She has shoulder-length curly brown hair and white seeming skin. She is wearing a black blazer over a grey top and dark red earrings.