Australian Journal of French Studies

Tyrannies of Distance, Perils of Proximity: Time, Space and Virtuality in the French and Francophone World

Australian Journal of French Studies (2016), 53, (1-2), 3–18.


Distance and proximity: two concepts which refer to the space, literal or metaphoric, between two things, two beings, two moments in time. The terms mean to stand apart and to be near; yet, the literal and ostensibly spatial nature of the terms quickly yields to their many figural uses. The easy slippage between the literal and metaphoric, the spatial and temporal, means that the two terms, however banal and transparent they may appear at first, belie a hidden complexity which invites us to see similarity in difference, and difference in similarity. This article explores how the two terms function across time in French and Francophone Studies in Australia and presents the complexities that arise in the articles gathered together in this special number of AJFS.

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Author details

Hardwick, Joe

Hubbell, Amy L.