Photo of Catherine Khordoc

Catherine Khordoc


Phone:613-520-2600 x 7068
Office:421D Tory


When I joined Carleton’s French Department in 2003, I felt like I was coming home in more ways than one. While Ottawa is my hometown, I also obtained two of my degrees at Carleton. I was at Carleton in the late 80s, studying for a degree in Journalism with a minor in French. I went on to work at CBC Radio in Québec City for a few years before coming back to Carleton to study for a Master’s degree in French. My M.A. thesis examined how humour is created in the famous comic book series, Astérix le Gaulois . As a Ph.D. student in French at the University of Toronto, I wrote a dissertation on the tower of Babel myth in contemporary francophone literature. Since then, I spent a few years living in Switzerland and I taught French literature (sneaking in a few Québécois novels into my courses when possible!) at the University of Limerick in Ireland.

Shortly after coming back to Carleton, I founded the Centre for Transnational Cultural Analysis (CTCA) with two other colleagues, Sarah Casteel who is in the English Department, and Ming Tiampo in Art History. Together, we seek to create a network of scholars who share common interests and to stimulate research and debate on transnational objects of study.

My current research interests focus on transcultural writing in France and Québec as well as migrant writing in Québec and Canada.

Research Interests

  • contemporary Québécois literature with an emphasis on “écriture migrante” and transnational writing
  • the works of Monique Bosco
  • francophone literature
  • transcultural writing
  • plurilingualism
  • the Tower of Babel in contemporary literature
  • Literature and math in francophone literature

Recent Publications


Tours et detours: Le mythe de Babel dans la littérature contemporaine. Ottawa: Presses de l’Université d’Ottawa, 2012.

Marie Carrière et Catherine Khordoc, eds. Comparing Migration: The Literatures of Canada and Québec / Migrance comparée: Les Littératures du Canada et du Québec. Bern: Peter Lang, 2008.

Special Journal Issues

Co-editor of special issue of Nouvelles études francophones. « Les pratiques scripturales de la migrance littéraire. » (with Marianne Bessy) 27.2 (Printemps 2012).

Chapters in edited books

(with Marie Carrière) “For Better or for Worse: Revisiting écriture migrante in Québec. » The Oxford Handbook of Canadian Literature. Cynthia Sugars,New York : Oxford University Press, 2015. 621-638.

“Vers une reterritorialisation de la tour de Babel. Deux exemples tirés de la literature québécoise.” Déterritorialisation: Effet de mode ou concept pertinent? Christiane Albert et Abel Kouvouama, eds. Pau, France: Presses de l’Université de Pau et des pays de l’Adour, 2013. 97-106.

“Constructions américaines de la tour de Babel dans la littérature contemporaine.” La tour de Babel. Arras: Artois Presses Université, Collection “Graphè”, no 21, 163-175.

“Le camouflage autobiographique dans L’algarabie de Jorge Semprún.” Les  Réécrivains: Enjeux transtextuels dans la littérature moderne d’expression  française. Patrick Bergeron et Marie Carrière, eds. Bern: Peter Lang, 2011. 121-37.

“Looking Beyond the Elephant: The Mexican Connection in Francine Noël’s La Conjuration des bâtards”, Canada and Its Americas. Winfried Siemerling and Sarah Casteel, eds. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2010. 231-245.

with Marie Carrière, “Introduction.” Comparing Migration: The Literatures of Canada and Québec / Migrance comparée: Les Littératures du Canada et du Québec. Marie Carrière and Catherine Khordoc, eds. Bern: Peter Lang, 2008.1-16.

Articles in refereed journals

“From Migrant to Transnational: Contemporary Québécois Literature.” Québec Studies, 63 (Spring 2017): 77-96.

“Traversing Traversing the Borders of Écriture Migrante –Transnational Writing in Québec.” CLCWeb : Comparative Literature and Culture, 18.4, December 2016.

“Introduction: Plaidoyer pour l’analyse des pratiques scripturales de la migrance dans les littératures contemporaines en français. ” Nouvelles études francophones (Special issue edited by Marianne Bessy and Catherine Khordoc, « Les pratiques scripturales de la migrance littéraire ») vol 27 no 1 (2012): 1-18.

“The Anti-Tower of Babel: A Critique of Multiculturalism in Ainsi parle la tour CN by Hédi Bouraoui.” TransCanadiana: Polish Journal of Canadian Studies. Vol 2 (2009): 51-65.

“Oublier le passé ou inventer la vie : Autobiographie et fiction, mémoire et oubli dans l’œuvre de Monique Bosco.” Nouvelles études francophones. vol 24 no 2 (Automne 2009) : 145-155.

Recent Graduate Supervisions

  • Johnny Alam, Ph.D. dissertation in Cultural Mediations, Institute for Comparative Study in Literature, Art and Culture,“Making or Breaking Nations: Traveling Memory in Contemporary Art and Photography: History, Commemoration, Nostalgia, and Humanitarian Interventions,” defended April 2017.
  • Joana Pimentel, Ph.D. dissertation in Cultural Mediations, Institute for Comparative Study in Literature, Art and Culture, “Transcultural Bodies: a ‘Minor’ Approach to Postcolonial Female Writing,” (2011 – )
  • Mélanie Martin, “Artistes rebelles: La révolte de la danseuse dans trois roman contemporains,” (2011-13)
  • Anna Brousseau, “Le pouvoir du silence dans les romans de Marie-Célie Agnant,” (2010-12)
  • Emily Hazlett, School of Canadian Studies, “Redefining Excellence: ‘Canadian-ness,’ Cultural Values and Canada Reads,” (2010-11)
  • Morgan Faulkner. “Langue et mémoire: le plurilinguisme dans La femme aux pieds nus de Scholastique Mukasonga,” (2008-10)
  • Rebecca Hammond, School of Canadian Studies: “Canadian Fiction: A Forum in Which the Voiceless Begin to Speak” (2007-08)
  • Laura Grace Conlon, L’emprisonnement dans deux romans d’Andreï Makine (2005-06)