The Catholic University of America

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 Marilyn Matar

Clinical Assistant Professor, French and
Francophone Studies
French and Francophone Club Advisor  

210A McMahon Hall
The Catholic University of America
Washington, DC 20064
Phone: 202-319-6532


Marilyn Matar obtained her Ph.D. in Modern French Studies from the University of Maryland, College Park, with a dissertation on the literary representations of the Lebanese civil war. Before coming to the United States, she studied at Université Saint-Joseph in Beirut, Lebanon where she completed her master’s degree in French literature.


Teaching and Experience
Dr. Matar’s first experience as a teacher was in Lebanon in middle and high school classes, and included preparing students for the French baccalaureate examination. Prior to joining The Catholic University of America, Dr. Matar taught a wide variety of classes on French language, literature and culture at the University of Maryland, the George Washington University, and the Alliance françaisein DC. In 2011, she served as Coordinator and supervisor of the Teaching Assistants in the French department at the University of Maryland and was Acting Course Chair for the Beginner and Intermediate French Courses.


Courses taught
French Language, Culture and Society II
Introduction to Cultural and Textual Analysis
Introduction to French Literature
From Romanticism to Modernism and Beyond
Intensive Intermediate French
Intensive Elementary French


Dr. Matar’s research focuses on the representations of war and identities in conflict in the Francophone literature of the Machrek, with a special emphasis on Lebanon and on the themes of memory and identity.
Her forthcoming book, Les Représentations littéraires de la guerre civile libanaise: pour une poétique du lien (to be published by Presses de l’Université Saint-Joseph, Beirut, 2016) explores the singularity of the aesthetics of writings from the Lebanese civil war, and addresses the ethical questions raised by these works.
She is also currently working with a group of scholars on a French textbook, Entre-textes: Dialogues littéraires et culturels (Forthcoming, Routledge 2016), which illustrates a dialogical approach to teaching classical and contemporary texts.


Selected Publications
Les Représentations littéraires de la guerre civile libanaise: Pour une poétique du lien, Presses de l’Université Saint-Joseph, Beirut, forthcoming 2016.
Spectres d’une guerre au(x) récit(s) perdu(s): Littoral, Visage retrouvé et Incendies de Wajdi Mouawad in Contemporary French and Francophone Studies: SITES, volume 18, issue 5, Special issue: War, Memory, Amnesia: Post-war Lebanon, December 2014, pp. 470-478.
A la croisée des chemins, il peut y avoir l’autre : lecture croisée de Littoral de Wajdi Mouawad,Palestine de Hubert Haddad et Les Versets du pardon de Myriam Antaki, in Contemporary French and Francophone Studies: SITES, volume 17, issue 5, December 2013, pp. 512-520.
A la recherche de la langue perdue: réflexions sur le devenir de la langue et de la littérature françaises selon Richard Millet in Contemporary French and Francophone Studies: SITES, Volume 12, Issue 4, October 2008, pp. 471-478.
Le Murmure ou la taisure : considérations sur l’acte de lecture et l’acte d’écriture dans L’Amour des trois sœurs Piale de Richard Millet in Richard Millet : la langue du roman, Artois Presses Université, 2008, pp. 85-102


Recent Presentations
Seuls, Wajdi Mouawad: Staging Self, Exile, and War, Invited speaker, University of Maryland, College Park, 18 September 2015.
Building and rebuilding the house: shifting spaces, shifting identities in Charif Majdalani’s novels, American Comparative Literature Association: Capitals, New York University, NY, 20-23 March 2014.
Wajdi Mouawad, Incendies ou le dire tragique de la guerreA juxtaposed reading of Wajdi Mouawad’s Incendies and Agrippa D’Aubigné’s Les Tragiques, Joint presentation with Professor Andrea Frisch, Circulating French in the Classroom: Reading Literature in Community, University of Notre Dame, South Bend, IN, 11-12 October 2013


Academic Student advisor
French club advisor