OBE PhD HonFCIL Officier des Palmes Académiques, Chevalier des arts et des lettres
- Primary position:
- Head of Department
Mike Kelly is a specialist in modern French culture and society, especially the history of ideas and intellectuals, and on public policy in the area of languages and language education, in the UK and in Europe more broadly.
He studied French at Warwick University (BA and PhD), and lectured at University College Dublin, before being appointed Professor of French at Southampton. Mike is Director of LLAS Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies, Director of Routes into Languages, and Hon Secretary of the European Language Council. He has received honours from the French government for his work in promoting French studies, and was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2014 for his services to higher education and European cooperation.
The University of Southampton's electronic library (e-prints)
French culture and society
Mike works on French cultural history in the 20th century, especially the history of ideas and intellectuals. He has published widely on the cultural and intellectual reconstruction of France after the Second World War. He has also published several articles on relations between Britain and France in culture and ideas. He has recently published on intellectuals and religion in the 1930s, and is currently working on debates around atheism and secularism/laïcité in both countries. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the journal French Cultural Studies, which he helped to found, and Editor of Synergies Royaume Uni et Irlande which publishes work on language and culture.
Mike works on policy and practices relating to languages. Following an AHRC-funded project, Languages at War with Prof. Hilary Footitt (University of Reading) he has co-edited two books on the subject, and published a study of language issues during the UN and NATO peace-keeping operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina during the 1990s, with Dr Catherine Baker (University of Hull). He is co-editor with Prof. Footitt of a book series on Languages at War, with Palgrave Macmillan and is co-editing a Handbook on the subject.
Mike is particularly committed to strengthening the capability of people in the UK to communicate in languages other than English. He was a prime mover and member of the Nuffield Language Inquiry, which put languages on the public agenda in 2000. He is Director of the government-funded Routes into Languages programme, which aims to increase the take-up of languages in secondary and higher education, and Trustee of Speak to the future, the national campaign on languages, which aims to provoke a step change in the country's attitudes and achievements in language learning. He recently spent three weeks in Japan on a JSPS Fellowship, giving papers on issues of language policy and intercultural communication.
Beyond the UK, Mike is concerned to improve the ability of European citizens to live in a multilingual and multicultural world. He completed a substantial project for the European Commission to develop a Profile for language teacher training across Europe (2004) which several EU member states have used in appraising their programmes for training language teachers. He led the ERASMUS-funded LanQua project working with 61 European partners to develop a toolkit for quality assurance in languages across Europe. He is Secretary of the European Language Council, and Editor of the European Journal of Language Policy/ Revue européenne de politique linguistique.
Mike has supervised and examined doctoral theses in several areas of modern French cultural studies, and in aspects of applied linguistics, including language education, discourse analysis and intercultural communication.
Mike has taught in most areas of modern French studies, including French thought, bande dessinée and the politics and society of contemporary France. He has also taught European and transnational cultural studies, and intercultural communication.
From 2000-2011 he was Director of the Subject Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies, and was active in developing national strategies to increase the interest of students in studying these subjects, and at the same time working to encourage and disseminate more effective approaches to teaching and learning. Since then, he has directed LLAS Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies, which leads projects in the area of educational development at national and European levels, and offers a programme of professional development for staff in schools and universities.