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Dr Emilia Wilton-Godberfforde

Profile summary

Professional biography

Emilia Wilton-Godberfforde (MA (Oxon) PhD, MPhil (Cantab))
I joined the Open University as a Lecturer in French in 2014 and have worked across various modules offered at the Open University (including L192, L211, L120 and L310 ). I have been module team chair for L211 and L310 and Course Director and tutor for the Residential School in Vernon. I have also worked on the team to write material for the new MA in Translation and produced material for OpenLearn. 
Before joining the Open University, I taught French literature, language, grammar and translation at the University of Cambridge where I was Research Fellow at Clare Hall College, Cambridge. I have also taught at Queen Mary, Paris VII and the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Lyon. I have over fifteen years' experience teaching and lecturing at university level.
I completed my Mphil and PhD at the University of Cambridge (Queens' college) and completed my undergraduate studies at the University of Oxford (Oriel College) in French and Italian. 

I am also qualified as a professional interpreter and translator (MA, University of Bath).

I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and have worked as a Research Associate at the IAS in Princeton. 


Research interests

I have specialised in French theatre in the early modern period. My book, 'Mendacity and the Figure of the Liar in Seventeenth-Century French Comedy' was published in 2017 by Routledge.

I have published articles on Molière, Racine, Rotrou, Tristan L'Hermite, Bernard Lamy and Pierre Nicole. Previous research has focused on dramatic theory, reception and audience response; theories of the comic, and translation studies.

In 2020 my translation book, English to French Translation: A Practical Manual, co-authored with Christophe Gagne was also published with Routledge.

My current research has focused on seventeenth-century surgery and politeness in Molière. I am also interested in language learning through drama pedagogy and the Digital Humanities. 

I am always keen to supervise PhD students.

In 2021, I co-ran a conference, with a grant I secured from the Language Acts and Worldmaking Project:

Teaching interests

Having studied, tutored and lectured at a range of institutions, my thinking and pedagogical approach have been enriched by different learning methods, course modules and class dynamics. I have taught language, literature, current affairs and history. My work at The Open University has also led me to focus on Second Language Acquisition and intercultural communication and I endeavour to integrate these different areas of research into my teaching.

My experience teaching and lecturing ranges the all years of undergraduate programmes and includes undergraduates, Masters’ students and agrégatifs in France. I have taught one-to-one sessions, class groups from four to thirty-five students and lectured to the whole student body undergraduates. I have also taught online language classes. My classes have been conducted both in French and in English.

In 2020, I worked with colleagues in LAL on a  multi-lingual creative writing project in response to the pandemic. We collated stories written by students and this was published as A Multilingual Decameron: Stories of a different world.

For the last two years I have liaised with the Ambassade de France so that The Open University is now an official partner of the Choix Goncourt. For this exciting venture, students can select the winning book from the short-listed titles in their reading groups.

I am also working with the School of Modern Languages and Cultures and The Centre for Foreign Language Study at Durham University to enroll students in a series of creative writing workshops in French and compete in a 'concours' launching in 2021.

Impact and engagement

For the last ten years I have been actively involved in outreach programmes teaching French for Villiers Park Educational trust, an organisation which helps young people reach their full academic potential. As of 2015, I have also given talks and featured in videos for the London Centre for Languages and Culture, partnered with Pembroke College Oxford and The Open University.

For the last five years I have worked for the Prince's Teaching Institute, presenting my research and teaching to MLF teachers around the country.

I have written online resources in French in conjunction with Villiers Park and The British Academy and produced material for the Cambridge University Language Centre.

In 2021, I developed a learning resource on Molière's Tartuffe for the Cambridge Collaborative A level Resources for Languages project (CCARL).

External collaborations

Research Associate for the Parisian Soundscapes Project

I was guest co-editor for a special edition of Early Modern French Studies ('Vile Beings, Bodies and Objects in Early Modern France').

I am currently working with different theatre directors in France and the US for an online resource on Molière.


[Book Review] L’Amour et l’amitié au Grand Siècle. By Delphine Calle, Astrid Van Assche (2023-10-12)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
French Studies

[Book Review] Rire et comédie: émergence d’un nouveau discours sur les effets du théâtre au xviie siècle. Par Coline Piot (2023)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
French Studies ((Early access))

[Book Review] Pierre Du Ryer, Théâtre complet. Sous la direction d’Hélène Baby. Tome ii, édition d’Hélène Baby, Catherine Dumas, Perry Gethner et Sandrine Berrégard (2023)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
French Studies ((Early access))

[Book review] Guilt and Extenuation in Tragedy: Variations on Racinian Excuses. By Edward Forman (2023)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
French Studies ((Early access))

Tartuffe in the Post-Truth Era (2022)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
L'Esprit Créateur, 62(2) (pp. 147-161)

[Book Review] La Pratique du spectateur: la médiation des regards dans le théâtre de Thomas Corneille by Par Gaël Le Chevalier (2019-04-30)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
French Studies, 73(2) (pp. 288-289)

Variations of Vileness: An Introduction (2017-11)
Patterson, Jonathan and Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
Early Modern French Studies, 39(2) (pp. 90-98)

Unmasking Falsehood: The Theatrical Pattern of Revelation in Nicole and Lamy (2017-01)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
Yale French Studies(130) (pp. 38-51)

English to French Translation: A Practical Manual (2020-12-30)
Gagne, Christophe and Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
ISBN : 9781138841956 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Abingdon

Mendacity and the Figure of the Liar in Seventeenth-Century French Comedy (2017-06-14)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
Routledge Studies in Renaissance Literature and Culture
ISBN : 9781472413581 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Abingdon

Mithridate and the temporal contradictions of heroism (2024)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
In: Hammond, Paul and Hammond, Nicholas eds. Tragedies of Tyranny: Essays on ‘Bajazet’ and ‘Mithridate’. Faux Titre
Publisher : Brill (In Press) | Published : Leiden

Parisian surgeons of the seventeenth century and the disciplinary emergence of modern medicine (2023)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
In: Chardin, Jean-Jacques; Corneanu, Sorana and Somerset, Richard eds. Ordering Knowledge: Disciplinarity and the Shaping of European Modernity (pp. 209-232)
Publisher : Presses universitaires de Strasbourg

Mendacity in Racine's Britannicus (2022-01-06)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
In: Hammond, Nicholas and Hammond, Paul eds. Racine's Roman Tragedies: Essays on Britannicus and Bérénice. Faux Titre (pp. 203-217)
ISBN : 9789004504806 | Publisher : Brill | Published : Leiden

Memories, Fantasies, and Realities of Death in Racine’s Andromaque (2019-12-24)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
In: Hammond, Nicholas and Harris, Joseph eds. Racine's Andromaque: Absences and Displacements. Faux Titre (pp. 61-78)
ISBN : 978-90-04-41506-5 | Publisher : Brill, Rodopi | Published : Leiden

Early Modern French Studies, Vol.39, No.2. Special Issue: Variations of Vileness (2017)
Patterson, Jonathan and Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia eds.
Publisher : Routledge

Jean-Baptiste Poquelin: Dom Juan, ou le festin de Pierre [Don Juan] (2017-01-25)
Wilton-Godberfforde, Emilia
The Literary Encylopedia