Your browser is unsupported

We recommend using the latest version of IE11, Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari.

Photo of Ireland, John

John Ireland, PhD

Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies

French and Francophone Studies


Building & Room:

1611 UH


601 S. Morgan St.

Office Phone:

(312) 996-4974


John Ireland is Associate Professor and Head of the Dept. of French and Francophone Studies at UIC. His primary teaching and research interests deal with existentialism, twentieth-century French literature and thought, and contemporary political French and Francophone theater. He is a former President of the North American Sartre Society and served as co-editor of Sartre Studies International from 2015-2021. After publishing Sartre, Un Art déloyal: théâtralité et engagement (Paris, Jean-Michel Place, 1994), he was invited in 1995 to join France's "Centre National de Recherche Scientifique” as a member of the “Equipe Sartre (ITEM-ENS)” where he is still active today. Among a host of research projects, he was part of the team that produced the first critical annotated edition of Sartre's Théâtre Complet in Gallimard’s Pléiade collection in 2005.

Over the last decade, John’s research has focused more on French and Francophone playwrights like Armand Gatti, Kateb Yacine, Noureddine Aba, Liliane Atlan, Jean-Claude Grumberg and Valère Novarina. John has just completed a book manuscript: Theater, War Memory and Contemporary France: Staging the Trauma of the Vichy Years and the Algerian War and is at work on another monograph: Existentialism and Empire: Decolonization and Literary Invention in Malraux, Camus, Sartre. Recent publications include a translation of Noureddine Aba’s play, La Récréation des Clowns/Clowns at Play, in an annotated bilingual edition (L’Harmattan, 2021).

Selected Publications


  • Sartre: Un Art déloyal – théâtralité et engagement. Paris: Editions Place (coll. “Surfaces”), 1994, 238 pages.

Edited books

  • Jean-Paul Sartre, Kean, « Le Pari », Bariona (with Michel Rybalka) in Théâtre complet. Ed. Michel Contat. Paris: Gallimard (Bibliothèque de la Pléiade). 2005, 1,602 pages.


  • Noureddine Aba. La Récréation des clowns (Clowns at Play). Paris: L’Harmattan. 2021, 260 pages.


  • “Biography Good, Autobiography Bad: A Fundamental Sartrean Paradox?” The Sartrean Mind, ed. Matt Eshleman and Constance Mui (London: Routledge, 2020), 450-460.
  • « Lettre de Chicago, 12 janvier 2017 » (On the Election of Donald Trump) Les Temps Modernes 692 (2017): 35-51.
  • « Noureddine Aba et Kateb Yacine: Pour un nouveau théâtre algérien dans l’esprit de Paul Vieille », Méditerranée, Mondialisation, Démocratisation : Hommage à Paul Vieille, sous la direction du Groupe d’initiative Paul Vieille, Paris : Geuthner, 2017, 401-415.
  • “Terreur et théologie : Paulhan, Scarry, Novarina.” Littérature, 176 (2014) : 97-107.
  • “Parler sur le théâtre : une conférence inédite de Sartre (1959).” Genesis, 39 (2014) : 101-132.
  • “Sartre’s America.” Sartre Studies International, 20.2 (2014): 76-89.
  • “Numance, Bataille et les fins de la violence théâtrale chez Sartre.” Etudes Françaises, 49.2 (2013) : 83-101.
  • “La Censure et la question du public théâtral de Sartre.” Europe, 1014 (2013): 271-287.
  • “Ouragan sur Les Mots: Sartre, Nizan et  “l’ami” Castro.” Revue des Sciences Humaines, 308 (2012): 47-60.
  • “”Ouragan sur le sucre;” : Sartre, Castro et la révolution cubaine.” Les Temps Modernes, 656(2009) 9-37.
  • “Le Kean de Sartre : personnage ou concept ?” Genesis, 25.5 (2005): 31-46.
  • “Jean-Paul Sartre,” Twentieth-Century French Dramatists, ed. Mary Anne O’Neill. Dictionary of Literary Biography, no.321 (2005): 334-352.
  • “Sartre and Scarry: Bodies and Phantom Pain.” In Revue Internationale de Philosophie, 231 (2005): 85-106.
  • “Poétique et engagement: l’écriture quantique d’Armand Gatti.” Europe. 877 (2002): 34-50.
  • “History, Utopia and the Concentration Camp in the Early Plays of Armand Gatti.” In Claude Schumacher, ed., Staging the Holocaust: The Shoah in Drama and Performance. Cambridge: Cambridge U.P., 1998, 184-202.
  • “A Speculum in the Text: Freud’s “Katharina” and Maupassant’s “Le Signe.”” MLN. 113.5 (1998): 1089-1110.
  • “Freedom as Passion: Sartre’s Mystery Plays.” Theatre Journal. 50.3 (1998): 335-348.
  • “Sartre’s Last Chance or What is Unfinished Literature?” Romanic Review 85.3 (1994): 419-436.
  • “Monstrous Writing: Serge Doubrovsky’s Autofiction.” Genre 26.1 (1993). Guest Editor and Contributor.

Notable Honors

2015, Silver Circle Teaching Award, UIC Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs

2007-2008, Fellowship, UIC Institute for the Humanities

2006, Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques, Ministry of National Education of the French Republic


Ph.D., New York University