• Room 03.002 - 10 University Square

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

French Studies Medical Humanities; French literature (19th century to the present) and illness, disease, disability, pain, suffering, death; French Thanatology; Literary representations of medical practice, care and experience; Literature and religion, especially in the 19th century; Bibliotherapy and scriptotherapy


Research activity per year

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Research Interests

My research is situated at the interface of French Studies and the Global Medical Humanities and is concerned in particular with the ways in which modern French literature and thought, from the nineteenth century to the present, contribute to culturally aware, linguistically sensitive, transnational understandings of disease, illness, pain, medical practice and dying/deathcollaborate in a wide range of national and international networks and am committed to demonstrating the significance of modern languages research to the wider public. In 2019, I organised a major public engagement event on the importance of Languages and Cultural Knowledge in Global Healthcare.

I am on the Executive Committee of the Society for French Studies (SFS), the oldest learned association for French studies in the UK and Ireland, and ADEFFI (Ireland's scholarly association for French and Francophone studies). I am also a member of the three-year working group on medical humanities for the Irish Humanities Alliance (IHA), which seeks to champion humanities research and scholarship across Ireland. My work for UK research councils includes my membership of the Peer-Review College for the AHRC, the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Future Leaders Fellowships (FLF) Scheme, and the British Academy's Knowledge Frontiers Programme: International Interdisciplinary Research Projects 

In recent years, my research has been funded by the AHRC (Leadership Fellowship entitled Global Disease: Language(s) and the Literary Imagination), the British Academy, the MHRA (Modern Humanities Research Association) and the Institute of Modern Languages Research (IMLR). 

Recent substantial (book-length) publications include:

  • The Care (Re)Turn in French and Francophone Studies, special issue of Australian Journal of French Studies (with Dr Loic Bourdeau, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and Prof. Natalie Edwards, University of Adelaide), Winter 2020.
  • French Thanatology, special issue of L'Esprit Créateur (with Prof. Enda McCaffrey, Nottingham Trent), including my article on the representation of mortality in the work of modern French physician writers, Spring 2021.

I am currently working on the following collaborative projects:

  • The Cultural Languages of Pain, a special transnational, multilingual issue of the Journal of Romance Studies (with Dr Anna Elsner, University of St Gallen, Switzerland).
I am a member of the Editorial Board of Modern and Contemporary France, an internationally prominent peer-reviewed journal offering a multidisciplinary view of all aspects of France from 1789 to the present day. I previously served as Assistant Editor of French Studies Bulletin, a quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal published by Oxford University Press. 
Along with Prof. Pascal McKeown (School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences), I was project leader of the QUB Health Humanities interdisciplinary research network

Postgraduate Research Supervision

I would be pleased to hear from anyone interested in pursuing postgraduate (MRes, PhD or postdoctoral) research in nineteenth-century French literature, especially as it engages with questions of medicine, gender and/or religion; or in intersections of literary French Studies (19th century to the present) with the Medical Humanities (illness, disease, disability, pain, suffering, death, the clinical experience, bibliotherapy, scriptotherapy etc.).

I have supervised to successful completion PhD theses on The Mythopoetics of Bodily Representation in the Works of George Sand (James Illingworth, 2018), Multimodality in Contemporary French Women's Writing (Poppy Boyd, 2018), and Idées Masculines: The Poetics of Non-Normative Masculinity in Decadent French Literature (Mathew Rickard, 2020). I am currently supervisor on 6 PhD projects and have supervised 7 MA/MRes dissertations since 2016.  



Prior to taking up a position as Lecturer in French Studies at Queen's in January 2013, I taught in the French departments of the Universities of Manchester, Exeter and Leicester. I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), and the recipient of a QUB Teaching Award (2014) in the student-nominated category and a QUB Students' Union Education Award for 'Best Feedback' (2016). I was also shortlisted for the 'Excellent Use of Feedback Award' at the Students' Union Education Awards in 2019. I offer undergraduate modules on 'Paris, City of Modernity' (at Level 2), 'Ideologies of Death in Modern French Literature' (at Level 3) and a final-year filière on 'Figures de l’altérité' (Mme de Duras, Ourika; Mérimée, Carmen). I also teach a session on Medical Humanities on the MRes Research Methods in Modern Languages module.

I am pleased to coordinate the R. Gapper undergraduate essay prize, an annual award by the Society for French Studies for the best essay submitted by an undergraduate student at a university based in the United Kingdom or Ireland.



Administrative Responsibilities

I am Director of Education for the School of Arts, English and Languages at QUB. 


Contact Details

Office: 10 University Square, Room 301

Tel: +0044 (0)28 9097 1401

Student Feedback and Consultation Hours: Wednesday 9-11am. Appointments for meetings at other times may be made by email: steven.wilson@qub.ac.uk

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Devlopment Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being


Dive into the research topics where Steven Wilson is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles


Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or