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Department ofModern Languages and Literatures

Jimia Boutouba

Jimia Boutouba

Associate Professor

Biographical Information

Jimia Boutouba is an associate professor of French and Francophone Studies, specializing in 20th and 21st century French & Francophone literature and cinema, and in 19th century colonial discourse.  She holds a BA and an MA in English from the University of Paris X, France, a certificate in Arabic from the Sorbonne University, and a Ph.D. in French Studies from the University of Southern California. Her scholarly work has arisen from her long-standing interests in cross-cultural encounters, minority discourses and in the intersections of political and cultural histories. Focusing on the intertwined histories of North Africa and France, she has explored works by Francophone women writers and filmmakers, examining the way their narratives address the violent legacies of the past and counteract the competitive discourses and practices of power to carve a new space of representation. The other major part of her research focuses on the articulation between race, gender and national representation in contemporary France. In particular, it explores how children born in France to immigrants redefine national belonging and enact new ways of relating to and imagining communities from within the French Republican tradition. She is committed to advocating this work in all her areas of teaching as a matter of social justice issue.


She has been the recipient of the Award for Excellence in Teaching (USC), the Ahmanson Foundation Fellowship, the Josephine De Karman Fellowship (USC), and the Tournées Film Festival Grant from the Cultural Services of the French Embassy.

Research Interests

  • Postcolonial cultures: literature and cinema in The Maghreb, Africa and the Caribbean
  • Postcolonial France: Minority discourses, National identity, the representation of the social Other (immigrants and their descendants) in modern French cinema
  • 20th/ / 21st century French literature and culture
  • Orientalism, 19th century travel literature
  • Postcolonial Theory, Feminist theory and Transnational Cinema


  • “Ancres invisibles,” Expressions Maghrébines. 13:1 (Summer 2014): 129-144.
  • “The Mudawana Syndrome: Gender Trouble in Contemporary Morocco,” Research in African Literatures. 45:1 (Winter 2014): 24-38.

  • “Rupturing Otherness, Fashioning the Self: The Aesthetics and Politics of Self- Transformation in Sakinna Boukhedenna’s Journal Nationalité: Immigré(e),” French Cultural Studies. 24:4 (November 2013): 441-448.

  • “Les Enfants de l’ombre: Dalila Kerchouche. Leila: Avoir dix-ans dans un camp de harkis,” Expressions Maghrébines. 12:2 (Winter 2013): 28-38.

  • “Femmes d’images et images de femmes: Parcours féminins et culture visuelle au Maghreb.” Nouvelles Etudes Francophones. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. 27:1 (Spring 2012): 145-162.

  • “Maux par mots: ou comment penser les blessures de l’Histoire,” Revue Etudes Francophones, University of Louisiana at Lafayette. V24: 1&2 (Fall 2009): 47-59.

  • “La République des Lettres: Ses écrivains, ses critiques, ses limites,” Revue du Gerflint: Synergies Monde Arabe, ISSN:1766-2796. V4 (2007). 149-159.