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2010 Competition

Sandoz Family Foundation – Monique de Meuron Programme
for the Encouragement of Up-and-Coming Academics
2010 competition «Modern Literatures»

Press Release – 10 February 2011

Since 1999, the Sandoz Family Foundation, which is keen to encourage Up-and-Coming Academics in the universities in French-speaking Switzerland (Fribourg, Geneva, Lausanne, Neuchâtel and EPFL), has financed the posts of an assistant lecturer and a graduate or post-doc assistant every year, up to a maximum of four years, as well as the award of an establishment credit. The areas supported vary from year to year. The 2010 competition is entitled: «Modern Literatures».

This year it is awarded to the University of Neuchâtel. The university proposed Ms Nathalie Vuillemin, Doctor of French Arts and Literature, for the prize-winning post in the competition. This is the first time in the history of the programme that the University of Neuchâtel has been the winner.

Ms Nathalie Vuillemin is the author of a joint doctoral thesis from the Universities of Neuchâtel and of Paris III Sorbonne, entitled «Les Beautés de la nature à l’épreuve de l’analyse» (1744-1805) («The beauty of nature under the scrutiny of analysis» (1744-1805)). Her research falls within the domain of the history of ideas. She positions herself at the crossroads between literary and scientific discourse. The new project that Ms Nathalie Vuillemin will be leading focuses on the reports of travellers who explored South America between 1750 and 1830.


Once she has taken up her post, Ms Vuillemin intends to get to work on theoretical considerations of a series of interdisciplinary questions, such as literary theory, the history of ideas, the commonalities between literary and scientific texts and other contemporary topics, such as the relationship between literature and the internet. She will be attached to the Maison des littératures (MALIT) in the Faculty of Arts of the University of Neuchâtel.