Manet van Montfrans studied Romance languages (French and Spanish) at the University of Amsterdam, where she obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degrees cum laude.From 1972-1976 she lived with her family in Kenia. From 1982 to 1986 she taught French Literature at COCMA, (Centrale Opleiding Middelbare Akten) in Utrecht, and from 1986 to 2009 she was associate professor of Modern European and French Literature and Culture at the Department of European Studies of the University of Amsterdam. Since 2009 she has worked as a researcher for the chair in Modern European Literature. From 1982 to 1998 she reviewed South-African and French Literature for NRC Handelsblad, and in 1999 obtained her doctorate degree cum laude with a literary dissertation, named Georges Perec. La Contrainte du réel.
As editor-in-chief of the French Library (Publ. G.A.van Oorschot) she supervised some 30 translations of contemporary French fiction.
Since 2002 she has been a board member of the Marcel Proust Society, coeditor of the bi-annual bilingual journal Marcel Proust aujourd’hui and of the Marcel Proust Bulletin. In addition, she was president and is now member of the board of SNRU (Stichting van Romanisten aan Nederlandse Universiteiten), the Foundation of Romanists at Dutch Universities.
- Marcel Proust Vereniging; www.facebook.com/marcelproustvereniging
- SRNU (Stichting van Romanisten aan de Nederlandse Universiteiten)
Manet van Montfrans has specialized in the work of Georges Perec – her doctorate dissertation dealt with autobiography and the constraint of form in the prose of Perec, while the focus of her present research is on other aspects of his work such as the intertextual dimension (Barthes, Calvino, Cayrol, Proust) and the part played by topography and space. Her publications on Patrick Modiano follow naturally from her Perec research since the two writers are thematically related.
French literature after 1980 is another area of special interest, and more particularly the so called ‘récits de filiation’ with their representation of the disappearance of traditional communities from the French countryside and the former industrial areas, largely as a result of demographic and technological developments after World Wars I and II (Bergounioux, Bon, Ferrari, Jourde, Lafon, Michon and Rouaud). A third area of research is the reflection on the wars of decolonization of the 50s and the 60s by writers such as Patrick Deville, Jérôme Ferrari et Laurent Mauvignier.
Current research projects:
- Film and Literature in the novels of Patrick Modiano
- Pierre Michon:1) Comité scientifique colloquium ‘Des arts visuels à l’écriture romanesque dans l’œuvre de Pierre Michon’, Université Babeş-Bolyai de Cluj-Napoca, 26-28 mei 2016, Cluj Napoca Roumanie. 2) Editor translation of Corps du roi of Pierre Michon: Koningslichamen (transl. Rokus Hofstede) (Publ. G.A. van Oorschot).
- Georges Perec and the City. Lectures et atelier d’écriture au Design Academy Eindhoven (Master, project ‘Observing the City’), February/March 2016.
- ‘Hollandsche Schouwburg: Lieu mémorial’, contribution à l’ Encyclopédie critique des mots de la mémoire et du témoignage, dir. par Philippe Mesnard (CELIS-UBP Clermont Ferrand) et Luba Jurgenson (Eur’ORBEM / Paris IV – CRAL.EHESS)
- ‘Forgotten literature’, about Françoise Frenkel, Rien ou poser la tête (article for the literary Journal Vooys, été 2016).
- ‘Jeux de mots, lieux de mémoire. Sur Parc Sauvage de Jacques Roubaud’, in Le jeu de mots/Puns, hommage à Sjef Houppermans, à paraitre aux éditions Brill/Rodopi, 2017.
- Lezingencyclus: ‘Spelen met taal. Vormvernieuwing in de moderne Franse literatuur’, 25 november 2016, UBA Amsterdam.
- Mathematics and Literature, Lecture, Nationale Wiskundedagen 2017.
- Georges Perec: Reading the City. Lezingen MA-opleiding Design Academy Eindhoven (project ‘Reading the City’, februari/maart 2017).