Sam Coombes


Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

20th and 21st century political thought, postcolonialism (especially theory and the Caribbean), topics relating to immigrant and diasporic communities in Britain and France, existentialist philosophy (Sartre notably). In all these areas, British-French comparative perspectives are particularly welcome.

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Personal profile



Dr Sam Coombes is Senior Lecturer and member of the Department of European Languages and Cultures, having previously taught at Nanterre University (2001-7) whilst completing postgraduate studies at Oxford University. 

He has worked extensively on existentialist philosophy (Sartre in particular), and political philosophy both francophone, continental, and anglophone. Since completing The Early Sartre and Marxism (Lang, 2008, 340pp.), francophone postcolonial and comparative francophone-Commonwealth studies have been a focus of his research. He has published widely on these subjects in both French and anglophone refereed journals. His monograph Edouard Glissant A Poetics of Resistance (Bloomsbury, 2018) relates contemporary postcolonial theory to alter-globalization theory. 

Sam Coombes is on the editorial board of the online journal The Literary Encyclopedia.

Research Interests

Sam Coombes’ main research interests lie in the field of twentieth-century and contemporary political thought, postcolonial studies, globalization studies and sociology.

Research activity

Questions of universalism, ethics and cultural identity in contemporary theoretical and literary writing in the context of economic and cultural globalisation have been a key focus of his research in recent years.




  • 20th Century  Political Thought (Final-year Option course)
  • Francophone postcolonial (Final-year Option course)
  • Politics and Institutions of Contemporary France  
  • Teaching, dissertation supervision and examining for the MSc in European Studies, the MSc in Transatlanticism and the MSc in Translation Studies.
  • From September 2010: MSc in European Studies course coordinator.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

1 Sept 19991 Mar 2006

Award Date: 1 Mar 2006

Master of Arts, University of Oxford

1 Sept 19981 Jul 1999

Award Date: 1 Jul 1999

French and Philosophy, Bachelor of Arts, BA in French in Philosophy, University of Oxford

1 Sept 19941 Jul 1998

Award Date: 1 Jul 1998


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