Caroline Ferraris-Besso

Assistant Professor




Campus Box 0411


McKnight Hall
Room 32
300 North Washington St.
Gettysburg, PA 17325-1400


PhD Cornell University, 2012
MA Cornell University, 2008
MA Université Savoie-Mont Blanc, 2004

Academic Focus

Nineteenth and twentieth-century French literature; Postcolonial studies; Polynesian studies; Visual culture

I received my licence, maîtrise and master’s degrees in French literature from the Université  Savoie Mont Blanc. I complemented my studies with coursework in contemporary European culture in the School of Modern Languages at the University of Exeter (UK) before coming to the United States to pursue doctoral work in the Department of Romance Studies at Cornell University, where I completed my PhD in 2012. Before coming to Gettysburg, I held visiting assistant professorships in the Department of French and Italian at Miami University, the Department of French and Francophone Studies at UCLA, and the Department of French and Italian at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.

My work is concerned with the ways in which literature and art have been used as tools to shape racial, social, and sexual minorities in the French Colonial Empire. It has appeared in Labyrinthe, Nineteenth-Century French Studies, Romance Notes, Women in French Studies, Nineteenth-Century Contexts, and MLN.*  My current book-length project is tentatively entitled Postcarding the Other: Polynesia and the Nineteenth-Century French Imagination.

* If you are interested in a copy of any of my papers but do not have institutional access to them, please feel free to email me for a copy.

At Gettysburg College, I teach intermediate and upper-level French language courses, as well as topic courses focusing on nineteenth-century culture, society, and literature. I also occasionally teach in the First-Year Seminar Program. My course, "You’re Not Yelping: From the Critique of Judgment to Consumer Rating Culture" (FYS 189-4),  has been hailed as "a class that will change the way you think."

In Spring 2020, in addition to Intermediate French II (FREN 202), I am teaching the Senior Seminar, entitled "Ni Dieu ni maître: Avatars français de l'anarchisme," which explores French revolutions and insurrections from 1789 to 2020.

Courses Taught