Paul Scott

Dr. Paul Scott
  • Professor of French
  • Honors Faculty Fellow
  • Undergraduate Director of French

Contact Info

Wescoe Hall, Room 2054
1445 Jayhawk Blvd
Lawrence, KS 66045-7594
Student drop-in hours for spring 2024:
Tuesdays 11am-1pm


Paul Scott is professor of French at the University of Kansas, where he has taught since 2004. He is also an affiliate faculty member of the Gunn Center for the Study of Science Fiction and an associate member of the Center for East Asian Studies. His research program focuses on subversion during the Ancien Régime and he also works on the radical potential of science fiction, with a particular focus on French literary speculative fiction and SF television shows from the USA, France, and South Korea. He is joint general editor of The Year’s Work in Modern Language Studies (published by Brill). He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (elected 2010), a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Linguists (elected 2019), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (elected 2020), and a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society (elected 2023). He is currently working on a book-length project tentatively entitled Cognitive Cadavers: The Evolution of the TV Zombie under contract with the Contributions to Zombie Studies series of McFarland. The book analyzes the phenomenon of the rational zombie in television shows from France, South Korea, the UK, the USA, and Australia.


Ph.D., Durham University, UK
M.A. in Seventeenth Century Studies, Durham University, UK
with Distinction
B.A. in Modern European Languages (French, German, Italian), Durham University, UK
with Honors


Research interests:

  • Early modern studies
  • Seventeenth-century France
  • Ancien Régime
  • Fairy tales
  • Twentieth-century science fiction
  •  SF television shows
  • Theater
  • Religion and Spirituality
  • Subversion
  • Zombies


Recent Graduate Courses Taught

Studies in French Science Fiction

Studies in the Seventeenth-Century (Molière, Mirth, and Modernity)

Seminar in French (Le spectacle dans le Grand Siècle)

Seminar in French (French Science Fiction, 17th-21st Centuries)


Recent Undergraduate Courses Taught

Zombies, Aliens, Monsters

Identity, Absolutism, and Power in France, 1589-1715

Introduction to French Literature

French  Science Fiction and Fantasy

Selected Publications

since 2020

Co-editor, with Christina Lord, of a special issue of European Comic Art themed on Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mézières’s Valérian et Laureline science-fiction comic series (vol 18.1, 2025).

“Neither Human nor Monster: The Rise of the K-Superzombie,” forthcoming in The Post Zombie: The Current and Future State of the Walking Dead, eds. Kyle William Bishop, C. Wylie Lenz, and Angela Tenga (McFarland, 2024).

“‘On n’est pas dans Black Mirror!’: Ambivalent Optimism in Osmosis,” French Screen Studies 24 (2024), 52-70.

Critical edition of Gaspard Olivier, Herménégilde, in Théâtre des provinces au XVIIe siècle, vol. I, eds. Bénédicte Louvat-Molozay and Pierre Pasquier (Paris: Garnier, 2024), 47-170.

“Décolletage Disputes in Early Modern France,” The Seventeenth Century 38 (2023), 853-83.

Blaise Pascal, Pensées, ed. Pierre Zoberman (Washington DC: Catholic University of America Press, 2023), translator of fragments 22, 29, 44, 54, 55, 57, 58, 60.

Co-editor, with Nicholas Hammond, of a special issue of Œuvres et Critiques (vol. 47.1, 2022), the first study devoted to French novelist Philippe Besson.

“D’un voile d’amitié j’ai couvert mon amour’: Homoerotic Subtexts in Racine’s Bérénice,” Racine’s Roman Tragedies: Essays on Britannicus and Bérénice,” eds. Nicholas Hammond and Paul Hammond (Leiden: Brill, 2022), 218-39.

“Heroism and Homoeroticism in Madame d’Aulnoy’s Belle Tales,” Early Modern French Studies 43 (2021), 186-99.

“Interplanetary Intimacy: Alien-Human Love in J.-H. Rosny aîné’s Martian Novels,” Neophilologus 105 (2021), 349-64.

“Aliens and Alienation in Pierre Boulle’s La Planète des singes,” Romance Studies 38 (2020), 26-37.

“Corneille’s Character Failure: The Problematic Portrayal of Sévère in Polyeucte,” Forum for Modern Language Studies 56 (2020), 177-96.

“From Contagion to Cogitation: The Evolving Television Zombie,” Science Fiction Studies 47 (2020), 93-110.