Top of page
Skip to main content
Main content

Franck Andrianarivo RakotobePhD CandidateFrench


Franck H. Andrianarivo Rakotobe is a Laney Graduate School Dean’s Teaching Fellow and a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of French and Italian at Emory University, where he is finishing his dissertation “Textual Famadihana: Returning of Bones in Francophone Indian Ocean and Caribbean Narratives,” under the direction of Valérie Loichot. His dissertation investigates famadihana, an ancestral exhumation practice from Madagascar that he uses metaphorically as a framework to analyze different genres of insular narratives of Réunion, Tromelin, and Martinique, which he studies alongside Madagascar. Using a minor transnational approach to connect these islands with a shared history of transoceanic migration, he analyzes stories of unburials in contemporary fictions, poetry, bande dessinée, and films in which authors exhume the bodies of insurgents, revolutionaries, slaves, and maroons from the desecrated tombs of oblivion to transfer their remains into a new, textually constructed burial site.

Before coming to Emory, Franck taught a variety of lower division language classes as a Teaching Assistant in French in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at Harvard University. He received his B.A. from the Université de La Réunion, and earned an M.A. in English studies at the Université François Rabelais in Tours, France.


Licence (B.A.), English, Université de La Réunion, France, 2006.

M.A., English, Université François Rabelais, Tours, France, 2009.

Selected Presentations

 “Drawing the Unimaginable in Les esclaves oubliés de Tromelin.” Northeast MLA Conference, Boston, March 2020.

 “Famadihana Textuel dans Vali pour une reine morte de Boris Gamaleya.” Littératures de Madagascar: entre local et global?, Diego-Suarez, Madagascar, April 2019.

 “Vertical Migration in Jean-Joseph Rabearivelo’s Poetry.” Global and Postcolonial Studies, Emory University, October 2018.

 “Female Subversion in Djo Tunda wa Munga’s Viva Riva.” African Literature Association, Yale University, June 2017.

 “The Female Body as a Paradoxical Site of l’Immonde in Congolese Fictions.” Romance Languages and Literatures Graduate Students Conference, Harvard University, January 2017.


“Re-Gendering the Hold: Fabienne Kanor’s ‘Quarrel with History.”’ French Forum (Forthcoming, Fall 2021).

Research Interests

  • Indian Ocean Studies
  • Caribbean Studies
  • Colonial, Postcolonial, and Decolonial Studies
  • Francophone African Cinemas
  • Migration and Diaspora Studies
  • Gender Studies
  • Ecocriticism
  • Popular culture