Amina Zarzi

Stipendiary Lecturer in French

I am an Associate Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy (AFHEA). At Somerville College, I teach French Language, Translation, Orals and Essay.

I have been teaching French ‘language cafés’ and French ‘research-based language tutorials’ at the University of Birmingham since 2020. I have also been an English academic language tutor at AWAS (Academic Writing Advisory Service) for the Department of Modern Languages at the University of Birmingham since 2021. 


My research interests revolve around colonial and postcolonial encounters between France and North Africa and the literary productions that emanate from these encounters. My PhD in French and Francophone Studies reads Algerian identity from the prism of the Sahara. It posits the Sahara Desert as an accurate analytical prism through which we can understand complex paradigms related to cultural identities in Algeria, and North Africa in general. I am interested in researching how colonial encounters in spaces like the Sahara shape and make visible, but also invisible different memories, histories and identities. More broadly, I am interested in 20th and 21st-century French and Algerian literatures, and I am currently researching the imprint of imperial legacies on postcolonial societies and how the latter resist but also perpetuate the colonial tropes in literary writing.


  •  ‘Showcasing Emptiness? Voicing Redemption Through ‘Saharomania’ in the French Literary Imaginary.’ Showcasing Empire, Then and Now: Material Culture, Propaganda and the Imperial Project. Cahiers Victoriens et Édouadiens 93 (2021).
  • « Un métier souvent oublié dans les régions sahariennes : l’écrivain, trait d’union entre le Sahara et l’identité Algérienne » An edited volume with the University of Tamanrasset (due December 2022).
  •  ‘On the traces of the roumia: the nostalgic remembering of Isabelle Eberhardt in Malika Mokeddem’s Le Siècle des Sauterelles (1992).’ Brill (forthcoming 2022).
  • ‘Remembering the French Colonial Past in the Postcolonial Present: Algerian Literature as a Case Study’ Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History (forthcoming 2023).

Where Next?