Skip to Main Content Skip to Main Navigation
search this website
search this website

Lehman College Logo Click Here to go back to Homepage

Department of Languages and Literatures at Lehman College

Faculty - Thomas C. Spear

Thomas C. SpearCampus Affiliation: Lehman College
Research Interests: Contemporary French and Francophone Literature, Autobiography.

Professor of French

Thomas C. Spear is Professor of French in the Department of Languages and Literatures at Lehman College and in the Ph.D. Program in French at The Graduate Center of CUNY. His interest in contemporary literature from Québec, the Indian Ocean and the Caribbean, particularly Haiti, can be seen in the courses he teaches, in the books of which he is editor or co-editor, and in over forty articles published in books and journals. As a specialist of autofiction, his critical eye ("I") is often in the first person and he has published short works of fiction. His novel, Les mascarades du Wisconsin, will be published in June 2023.

He is a frequent speaker at conferences, book fairs and literary programs, and occasionally appears on television and radio to address topics of literature, culture and current events. A pioneering presence on the Francophone Internet, most notably he is the principal editor of Île en île, an encyclopedic web site with an archive featuring over 400 authors from the world’s French-speaking islands and their diaspora.

Among his distinctions, he received the Trophée de la Diversité Culturelle from the French Minister of Culture (2005), the Trophée du Gardien du Livre at the Livres en Folie Book Fair in Haiti (2016), and one of the Grands Prix of the Académie Française (Le Prix du rayonnement de la langue et de la littérature françaises) in 2018. He received the Excellence in Research, Scholarship & Creative Works Award at Lehman College in 2007. Prof. Spear was inducted into the Ordre des Francophones d'Amérique in 2018.


  • Une soirée haïtienne. Sous la direction de Thomas C. Spear, Éditions du CIDIHCA, 2020.
  • Paroles et silences chez Marie-Célie Agnant; l’oublieuse mémoire d’Haïti. Sous la direction de Colette Boucher et Thomas C. Spear, Éditions Karthala, 2013.
  • Une journée haïtienne. Sous la direction de Thomas C. Spear, Mémoire d’encrier et Présence Africaine, 2007; Second edition: Éditions du CIDIHCA, 2020.
  • La Culture française vue d’ici et d’ailleurs. Sous la direction de Thomas C. Spear, Karthala, 2002.
  • Céline and the Politics of Difference. Edited by Rosemarie Scullion, Philip H. Solomon and Thomas C. Spear, University Press of New England, 1995.

Selected translations:

  • Faulkner, Mississippi, by Edouard Glissant, translated by Barbara Lewis and Thomas C. Spear, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1999; paperback: University of Chicago Press, 2000.
  • Brooklyn Bridge, by Leslie Kaplan, translated by Thomas C. Spear, Station Hill Press, 1992.

For a résumé of publications and a selection of audio and video recordings, see