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Theresa Varney Kennedy

Associate Professor of French

Interim Division Director of French and Italian


One Bear Place #97391
Waco, TX 76798
Office: Old Main 373
Phone: (254) 710-4425

Spring 2018 office hours:
MWF 3:30-5:30 and by appointment.


Ph.D. in Modern French Doctoral Studies, May 2007
University of Maryland, College Park
Dissertation Director: Dr. Hervé Thomas Campangne
Françoise Pascal’s ‘Agathonphile martyr, tragi-comédie’: An Annotated Critical Edition

M.A. in French, May 2001
University of Maryland, College Park

State University College at Buffalo, Jan 1997-May 1998
Fulfilled requirements and coursework for Certificate of Qualification

Cours de Civilisation Française de la Sorbonne, Sep 1996-Jan 1997
Study abroad through the State University at Oswego in Paris, France

B.A. in French, Jan 1997
State University at Buffalo, New York

B.A. in Music Performance, May 1996
State University at Buffalo, New York




Refereed Publications:


Critical Editions



Maintenon, Madame de. Proverbes dramatiques. Eds. Perry Gethner and Theresa Varney Kennedy. Paris: Classiques Garnier, 2014.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. Françoise Pascal’s ‘Agathonphile martyr, tragi-comédie’: An annotated critical edition. Tübingen: Gunter Narr, « Biblio 17 », 2008.

Published Refereed Articles and Book Chapters


Kennedy, Theresa. “From Stage to Cloister: Madame de Maintenon’s Classroom Drama.” Guilty Pleasures: Theater, Piety and Morality in 17th-Century France. Ed. Joseph Harris and Julia Prest. Yale French Studies No. 130 (2016): 110–122.


Kennedy, Theresa. “Cultivating Their Gardens: Women and the Art of Home Economics in Madame de Maintenon’s Dramatic Proverbs.” Papers on French Seventeenth-Century Literature XLIII, No. 85 (2016): 363–377.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “‘No Exit’ in Racine’s ‘Phèdre’: The Making of the Anti-Hero.” The French Review 88.1 (2014): 165–178.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “From mauvaise mère to bonne mère: The Making of Republican Mothers in Women’s Pedagogical Theater.” Dalhousie French Studies 102 (Summer 2014): 81–90.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “A Mind of Her Own: La Princesse de Clèves and the Making of the Female Hero in Seventeenth-Century Women’s Tragedy.” Papers on French Seventeenth-Century Literature XLI, No. 81 (2014): 365–378.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “Staging the Impossible femme forte in Maintenon’s Dramatic Conversations.” Women’s Voices: Critical Essays on Francophone Women’s Theater. Ed. Cecilia Beach and Joyce Johnston. Women in French Studies Journal 5 (2014): 62–75.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “Gender performance in 17th-Century Dramatic Dialogue: From the Salon to the Classroom.” Cahiers du Dix-Septième: An Interdisciplinary Journal 15.1 (2013): 1–18.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “Female Playwrights and their filles rebelles in 17th-century France.” Rebelles et criminelles chez les écrivaines d’expression française. Ed. Colette Trout and Frédérique Chevillot. Atlanta/Amsterdam: Rodopi, “Faux Titre,” (2013): 45-61.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “Madame de Maintenon’s Proverbes Inédits: Words to Live By.” Women in French Studies Journal 18 (2010): 29-42.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “Metatheatricality and Subversion in the Comtesse de Murat’sVoyage de Campagne. Neophilologus 94.4 (2010): 557-567.


Kennedy, Theresa Varney. “Tragic Irony in Catherine Durand’s Comédies en proverbes.”Papers on French Seventeenth-Century Literature XXXVII, No. 72 (2010): 117-128.



Published Book Reviews


Madame de Souza, Eugénie et Mathilde, ou Mémoires de la famille du Comte de Revel. Ed. Kirsty Carpenter. New Zealand Journal of French Studies 36.1 & 2 (2015): 161-162.


Legault, Marianne. Female Intimacies in Seventeenth-Century French Literature. The French Review 88.1 (2014): 234-35.


Enchanted Eloquence: Fairy Tales by Seventeenth-Century French Women Writers. Ed. and Trans. Lewis C. Seifert and Domna C. Stanton. Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal 7 (2012): 338-39.

Théâtre de femmes de l'Ancien Régime: XVIIe siècle. Ed. Aurore Evain, Perry Gethner, and Henriette Goldwyn. Papers on French Seventeenth-Century Literature 36.71 (2009): 300-03.


Published Conference Proceeding


Kennedy, Theresa. “La Comédie et la Tragédie à la cour de La Bruyère.” Francographies: Actes du sixième Colloque: Création et Réalité d’Expression Française, N° Spécial 4 Nouvelle Série (2002): 83-98.


Work in Progress:


Kennedy, Theresa. Deliberating the Heroine in Early Modern French Women’s Theater. (Under advance contract at Routledge).


Selected Conference Papers:

Women behaving badly in the théâtre de société of the early modern period. Women in French UK 14th Biennial Conference, Hinsley Hall, Leeds, United Kingdom (Will present May 19–21 2017).

Theater and Religion: The Case of Madame de Maintenon’s Dramatic Proverbs. Christian Association of World Languages, Houghton College, Houghton, New York, Apr 14–16 2015.

Deliberating the Violent Heroine in Seventeenth-Century Women’s Theater. Society for Interdisciplinary French Seventeenth-Century Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, Nov 5-7 2015.

The Good, The Bad, and the Thoughtful: The Emergence of the Deliberative Heroine in Seventeenth- and Eighteenth- Century French Women’s Theater. Rocky Mountain Modern Language Association, Sante Fe, New Mexico, Oct 8-10 2015.

Deliberating the Heroine in Seventeenth-Century French Women's Theater. Comparative Drama Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, Mar 26-29 2015.



French early modern women writers and playwrights, 17th century theater, gender stereotyping,representation of female characters, opera, the female hero .




Methods of teaching literature, early modern texts, French theater, female writer.






Panorama of French Theater, Intermediate French, Survey of French Literature I, Conversational French, Introduction to French Literature.


Click here to view the course trailer for Dr. Kennedy's FRE 3315.