Renée Altergott

Graduate Student
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Renée Altergott is a PhD candidate in the Department of French and Italian at Princeton University. Her research interests include sound studies and soundscapes, media history, and ethnomusicology. Her dissertation will explore the impact of sound recording on the writing of sound in French-language literature of the 19th and 20th centuries. Before coming to Princeton, Renée spent five years working in France as a freelance translator, English teacher, and Academic Coordinator at NYU Paris.


  • M.A. French Literature, Princeton University (2016)
  • M.A. Language, Arts, and Contemporary Theory, University of Paris Diderot, France (2013)
  • M.A. French Language and Civilization, NYU Paris, France (2011)
  • B.A. French and Music Composition, Northwestern University (2008)

Fellowships and Research Grants

  • IKKM Princeton-Weimar Media Studies Program, “Challenges of Media Anthropology,” Weimar, Germany, June 2017.
  • Dean’s Fund for Scholarly Travel, 2016-2017
  • Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS) Pre-Dissertation research grant, Summer 2016. 
  • The Bayard Henry Class of 1876 Graduate Fellowship, Princeton University, 2014-2015
  • New York University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Fellowship, 2010-2011

Conference Papers

- “Acousmatic Voice in Villiers de l’Isle-Adam’s L’Eve future and Jules Verne’s Le Château des Carpathes.” Voix Acousmates, Université de Rennes 2, September 6-8, 2017

- “Barthes’ Ghost in the Machine: Italo Calvino’s fictional re-writing of Barthes in ‘A King Listens’.” 20th and 21st-Century French and Francophone Studies International Colloquium, Le Sens et les sens, Bloomington, IN, April 7, 2017

- “Musical Hospitality in the works of Assia Djebar and Béla Bartók.” NEMLA, Baltimore, MD, March 24, 2017

- “Musiques de terroir: Champfleury and the Chansons populaires des provinces de France.” NCFS, La Terre, Providence, RI, October 27, 2016

- “Emma Bovary and the dying echoes of the literary metaphor.” NCFS, Contamination, Princeton, NJ, November 5, 2015

- “The Voice as a Revolutionary Weapon: Opera and Revolt in Marie Chauvet’s Dance on the Volcano.” Yale Comparative Literature Graduate Student Conference, Singing the World, New Haven, CT, April 17, 2015


  • FRE 101 (Fall 2015), FRE 103 (Fall 2016)
  • VIS 336/MUS 302 Sonic Cinema: Music, Noise, and the Moving Image, Spring 2017 (Assistant Instructor)
  • English Lecturer, Ecole Supérieure de Commerce, Paris, France, 2011-2012
  • English Teaching Assistant, Strasbourg, France, 2008-2009.

Academic Service

  • Co-organizer, Princeton Graduate Student Conference, “Transparency and Opacity in French and Francophone Literature”, October 14, 2016.
  • Organizer, “Calligrammes: a song cycle of visual poetry” concert featuring Albert Behar and Ariadne Greif, Princeton University Art Museum, April 28, 2016.
  • Co-organizer, Princeton Graduate Student Conference, “Writing Out Loud: Orality and Aurality in Literature,” October 16, 2015.

Linguistic Proficiency

  • English (native speaker)
  • French (fluent)
  • Working proficiency in German (Intensive B2-level courses taken at the Goethe Institutes of Berlin and Freiburg, Summer 2015)
  • Intermediate Classical Arabic