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Languages, Cultures and Visual Studies

Photo of Professor Fiona Cox

Professor Fiona Cox

Head of Department, Professor of French and Comparative Literature


01392 726319


I was brought up in Worcestershire and did a degree in French and Latin at the University of Bristol, where I also gained a PhD supervised by Charles Martindale and David Meakin, entitled 'Virgil's Presence in Twentieth Century French Literature'. This was eventually published as Aeneas Takes the Metro: Virgil’s Presence in Twentieth Century French Literature. While working on the PhD I was able to spend a year teaching English in Bordeaux at Université Michel de Montaigne III. In 1995 I took up a Lectureship in French at University College, Cork and worked there for fifteen years. I joined the University of Exeter in 2010, where I am currently Head of Department of Modern Languages and Cultures and Associate Professor of French and Comparative Literature.

I have published widely within the area of classical reception and contemporary women’s writing as well as on Victor Hugo. Current projects include a monograph on the ways in which Les Misérables responds to and reworks classical epic in its bid to become a defining epic for the nineteenth century and the future, and a book on contemporary French and Francophone receptions of Antigone in literature and film.

I have supervised PhDs on classical reception, contemporary women’s writing and nineteenth-century French literature, and should be delighted to hear from prospective PhD candidates

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Reception of classical literature (especially Virgil and Ovid) in nineteenth, twentieth and twenty first century literature and culture. My main works in this area are Aeneas Takes the Metro - Virgil's Presence in Twentieth Century French Literature (Legenda, 1999), Sibylline Sisters - Virgil's Presence in Contemporary Women's Writing (OUP, 2011),Ovid's Presence in Contemporary Women's Writing - Strange Monsters (OUP, 2018), co-edited with Elena Theodorakopoulos Homer's Daughters - Women's responses to Homer in the twentieth century and beyond (OUP, 2019) and am currently co-editing a volume with Helena Taylor entitled Ovid's receptions in French Women's Writing from the medieval period to the present day (OUP, 2022).

I have published several chapters and articles on the artistic imagination of Victor Hugo, and am currently working on a project which analyses his transformation of epic conventions in Les Mis and how these processes foreshadow the preoccupations of the modern novel.

Translation: I am co-translator of Marius Roux's The Substance and the Shadow (Penn State, 2007). I have also published chapters and articles on translation.

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I'd be delighted to hear from any research students interested in working on:

Classical Reception

Contemporary Women's Writing

Literary Translation (especially nineteenth, twentieth and twenty first centuries)

The French novel  - nineteenth and twentieth century

Research students

Dorota Rzycka - 'Dans le prisme de la belgitude - L'analyse des espaces belges dans l'oeuvre d'Emile Verhaeren et Jacques Brel'. PhD awarded 2011 UCC Ireland. Co-supervisor.

Kathleen Hamel - 'Ovid's Metamorphoses in Twentieth Century French Literature and Art' External Supervisor. (UCC- Ireland)

Catherine Burke - 'Homer's Presence in Twentieth Century French Literature' External Supervisor (UCC - Ireland)

Second Supervisor to Catrin Francis - 'The Politics of Appropriation in French Revolutionary Theatre'

Sandra Daroczi. 'Readerly Dialogues: Reception, Intertextuality and the Other in Contemporary French Women's Writing'.

Giada Alessandroni (second supervisor) 'Amongst Women: Literary representations of female homosociality in Belle Epoque France'.

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Copyright Notice: Any articles made available for download are for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the copyright holder.

| 2023 | 2022 | 2019 | 2018 | 2016 | 2015 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2009 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2003 | 1999 | 1997 |


  • Cox F. (2023) Corinne at the Capitol, Ovid in French - Reception by Women from the Renaissance to the Present, Oxford University Press, 140-151.
  • Cox F. (2023) 'Il faut raconter mon long parcours' Migration and Ovidian Presences, Ovid in French - Reception by Women from the Renaissance to the Present, Oxford University Press, 242-263.
  • Taylor H, Cox F. (2023) Introduction, Ovid in French: Reception by Women from the Renaissance to the Present, Oxford University Press, 1-20.
  • Cox F, Taylor H. (2023) Ovid in French: Reception by Women from the Renaissance to the Present, Oxford University Press.



  • Cox FM. (2019) 'Thinking back through our mothers' - Cixous and Homer beyond the third wave, Women's responses to Homer in the twentieth century and beyond, Oxford University Press.
  • Liveley G, Richards J, Richards F, Rabinowitz N, Hurst I, Roberts D, Murnaghan S, Wilson E, Burke C, Paul G. (2019) Homer's Daughters: Women's responses to Homer in the twentieth century and beyond, DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198802587.001.0001.


  • Cox FM. (2018) An Amazon in the Renaissance - Mlle de Gournay's translation of Virgil, Virgil and his Translators, Oxford University Press, 1-15.
  • Cox FM. (2018) Generic Transgressions and the Personal Voice, Reading Poetry, Writing Genre: English Poetry and Literary Criticism in Dialogue with Classical Scholarship, Bloomsbury, 313-335.
  • Cox FM. (2018) Ovid's Presence in Contemporary Women's Writing - Strange Monsters, Oxford University Press, DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198779889.001.0001.


  • Cox FM. (2016) Everything and Nothing - Hugo and Shakespeare, Dix-Neuf.


  • Cox F. (2015) P. HARDIE, THE LAST TROJAN HERO: A CULTURAL HISTORY OF VIRGIL'S AENEID . London: I.B. Tauris, 2014. Pp. ix + 249, 8 pls, 39 illus. isbn 9781780762470. £25.00, The Journal of Roman Studies, volume 105, pages 434-435, DOI:10.1017/s0075435815001069.
  • Cox FM. (2015) Le rôle d’Orphée dans les romans de Sylvie Germain, La représentation du “couple” Virgile-Ovide dans la tradition culturelle de l’ Antiquité à nos jours, Septentrion - Presses Universitaires, 327-337.
  • Cox FM. (2015) Homeric Variations: From Les Misérables to the nouveau roman, Les Misérables and its Afterlives: Between Page, Stage, and Screen, Ashgate, 144-166.
  • Cox FM. (2015) Women's Education and the Classics, Learning Greek and Latin from Antiquity to the Present, Cambridge University Press.



  • Cox F, Brown S, Braund S, Balmer J, Theodorakopoulos E, Tarlo H, Hurst I. (2012) Special issue of the Journal of Classical Receptions, volume 4, pages 149-271.
  • Cox FM, Theodorakopoulos E. (2012) Fidelity in an Arranged Marriage - Sarah Ruden's Aeneid, Classical Receptions.
  • Cox FM. (2012) Myth, Mutability and the Third Wave, Classical Receptions - Special Issue, volume 4, no. 2, pages 163-175, article no. 2.
  • Cox FM. (2012) Female Voices - the Democratic Turn in Ali Smith's Classical Reception, Classics - A Democratic Turn, Oxford University Press.
  • Cox FM. (2012) Ovid on the Channel Islands: The Exile of Victor Hugo, Two Thousand Years of Solitude: Exile after Ovid, Oxford University Press.


  • Cox FM. (2011) Sibylline Sisters - Virgil's Presence in Contemporary Women's Writing, Oxford University Press.


  • Cox FM. (2009) Les Misérables: The Shadowlands of Epic, Haunting presences, Univ of Wales Pr, 75-88.


  • Roux M, Collins D, Smith P. (2007) Substance and the shadow, Pennsylvania State Univ Pr.
  • Cox FM. (2007) Pygmalion and the Prostitue: Processes of Exchange in Les Miserables, Money and culture, Peter Lang Pub Inc, 143-158.
  • Cox FM, Schmidt-Hannisa HW. (2007) Introduction, Money and culture, Peter Lang Pub Inc, 11-14.
  • Cox FM. (2007) Night Falls on America: Virgilian Pastoral in Michel Butor's Mobile, Pastoral palimpsests, Michael Paschalis, 171-189.
  • Cox FM, Schmidt-Hannisa HW. (2007) Money and culture, Peter Lang Pub Inc.


  • Cox FM. (2006) Virgilian Transformations - The Aeneid in the History of Translation, Translations from classical literature, Irish Texts Society, 69-82.


  • Cox FM. (2005) Money and Identity in Les Misérables, Currencies, Peter Lang Pub Inc, 121-133.
  • Cox FM. (2005) The Formlessness of Hugo's Epic World, Formless - Ways In and Out of Form, Peter Lang Pub Inc, 161-172.
  • Cox FM. (2005) Virgilian Underworlds in Le Rhin and La Modification, French Studies Bulletin.


  • Cox FM. (2003) Shadows Over the Rhine - Hugo's Reading of Virgil's First Eclogue, Cross-cultural travel, Peter Lang Publishing, 209-219.


  • Cox FM. (1999) Aeneas takes the Metro: Virgil's Presence in twentieth Century French Literature, Legenda.


  • Cox FM. (1997) Translating the Aeneid to the Nouveau Roman - Pierre Klossowki's Translation, Translation and Literature, volume 6, pages 203-215.

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More information

I am currently on the Executive Committees of the Society for French Studies and of the Society of Dix-Neuviémistes.

Invited Speaker:

Keynote address at the Annual Meeting of Postgraduates in the Reception of the Ancient World, University of Birmingham, December 2012.

Virgil Translation Workshop, University of British Columbia, September 2012

Journée Virgile/ Ovide – Université de Lille III, November 2010

Vergil Society, Symposium at Cuma, Naples - June 2006

'Pastoral after Theocritus and Virgil' University of Crete, May 2006

Research Seminar Series - Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity, University of Birmingham, November 2004.

Virgil Society, London, May 2002.

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