A native of Paris, France, André Benhaïm received a Maîtrise de Lettres Modernes from the Université de Paris-7, and a Diplôme d’Etudes Avancées from the Université de Lille-3, before obtaining his Ph.D. from Emory University. He joined the Princeton faculty in 2001. Professor Benhaïm’s main areas of research and teaching are 20th-century French prose literature and culture and Francophone literature and culture from North Africa and the Mediterranean. Particularly interested in questions of identity and representation, and the relation between ethics and aesthetics, he also focuses on the relationship between “canonical” literature (Proust, Camus…), contemporary works (Chevillard, Modiano…), and “popular culture.” A Proust scholar, he is the author of Panim. Visages de Proust (2006), and of a collection of essays: The Strange M. Proust (2009). He has also co-edited Ecrivains de la Préhistoire(2004), and a special issue of the journal Revue des Sciences Humaines entitled “Petits coins. Lieux de Mémoire” (2001). Lately, his research has led him to study French and Francophone bandes dessinées (and graphic novels), from Hergé’s Tintin to Joann Sfar’s Le Chat du Rabbin. Professor Benhaïm's latest publication include a book on Albert Camus and the everyday, Albert Camus au Quotidien (co-edited with Aymeric Glacet, 2013).
Benhaïm also belongs to the international research team "Animots", devoted to the study of animals and animality in French literature, chaired by Dr. Anne Simon, hosted by the CNRS and EHESS. His latest publication is 1913: The Year of French Modernism, co-edited with Effie Rentzou (Manchester UP, 2020), and he recently finished the manuscript of Après Ulysse. Vers une poétique de l’hospitalité, an essay on the Mediterranean as a space of passages and transformations, from Homer to the present.
Professor Benhaïm regularly teaches graduate seminars and undergraduate courses on Marcel Proust, Albert Camus, and the Mediterranean. Some of his favorite courses include one on Paris in the 20th century (“Visions of Paris”), and one on hospitality (“Tales of Hospitality: France, North Africa, and the Mediterranean”), cross-listed with Comparative Literature. He recently offered courses entitled “The World in Bandes Dessinées" (cross-listed with African Studies), and "The Art of Insignificance" (sponsored by the Princeton Art Museum's Mellon Fund).
Après Ulysse. Vers une poétique de l’hospitalité en Méditerranée . Chapters include studies on Homer’s The Odyssey, Albert Camus, Tahar Ben Jelloun, Assia Djebar, Albert Cohen, and Childhood in the Mediterranean through film (The Battle of Algiers, Caché, Azur et Asmar), and graphic novels (from Carnets d’Orient to The Rabbi’s Cat).
Albert Camus au Quotidien
A. Benhaïm and A. Glacet, eds.
Villeneuve-d’Ascq: Presses Universitaires du Septentrion, 2013
The Strange M. Proust
A. Benhaïm ed. Oxford: Legenda, 2009
Panim. Visages de Proust
Villeneuve-d’Ascq: Presses Universitaires du Septentrion, 2006
Écrivains de la préhistoire
A. Benhaim and M. Lantelme eds. Toulouse: Presses Universitaires du Mirail, collection “Cribles”, 2004.