Areas of Expertise
French language, French literature, French culture, medieval French literature
Ph.D., French Literature, Tulane University, 1994.
M.A., Romance Languages, University of New Orleans, 1989.
B.A., Magna Cum Laude (Judaic Studies), Newcomb College of Tulane University (including Junior Year Abroad at Hebrew University, Jerusalem,
Shira Schwam-Baird is a Professor of French in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. She acquired her Ph.D at Tulane University in 1994. Her specialty is medieval French literature, particularly of the late Middle Ages. She teaches French language and culture classes at all levels, and literature classes both in French and in English translation. She also leads and organizes the Strasbourg French Language and Culture Study Abroad program which has taken place annually since 1999.
Dr. Schwam-Baird is part of a team of fellow scholars who have been awarded an NEH Translation and Scholarly Editions grant of $200,000 for a translation and editing project. This three-year project (January 2014-December 2016) funds a digital edition and modern English translation of the last unedited Franco-Italian epic, Huon d’Auvergne, drawing on three manuscripts and one fragment, dating from 1341 to 1441. Dr. Schwam-Baird is translating the Berlin Huon d’Auvergne into English, and checking the Berlin transcription as she translates.
The list below includes development work:
2017-2018 Outstanding International Leadership Award
2013 winner of the Southeastern Medieval Association's research prize
Granted sabbatical for academic years 2010-2011 and 2018-2019.
Wrote successful applications to the UNF Transformational Learning Opportunities program to fund UNF students participating in the French Language Study Abroad Program in 2006 ($8000), 2008 and 2009 ($10,000), 2010, 2011 and 2012 ($11,000), 2013 and 2014 ($16,000), and 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 ($19,000)
Obtained donation from outside donors to award scholarships for the French Language Study Abroad Program for 2006 ($4000), 2007 ($9000), 2008 ($9000), 2009 ($6000), and 2012 ($2000)
Worked on successful proposals in 2007 to obtain major endowment donations to Department of World Language French Studies Program and Study Abroad: $100,000 Harriet LeMaster Scholarship Fund, $350,000 Cascone Family Foundation (shared with International Business program in CCOB)
Granted competitive full-pay sabbatical semester, fall 2002
Recipient of Academic Affairs summer research grant, 2002
Recipient of departmental summer research grant, 2001
Recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to participate in a Summer Seminar for College Teachers at Princeton University under the direction of Dr. Karl Uitti, 1994
Exchange fellow at Université de Strasbourg, 1991-1992. Graduate assistantship and tuition scholarship, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA, 1989-1994
Graduate assistantship, University of New Orleans, New Orleans, LA 1987 - 1989
French government scholarship to summer study program in La Rochelle, France, 1989
Inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, 1976
National Merit Scholar, 1972
Modern Language Association of America
American Association of Teachers of French
Medieval Academy of America
International Courtly Literature Society
Southeastern Medieval Association
Grants and Contracts Awarded
Part of a team awarded an NEH Translation and Scholarly Editions grant of $200,000 for a translation and editing project. This three-year project (January 2014-December 2016) funds a digital edition and modern English translation of the last unedited Franco-Italian epic, Huon d’Auvergne, drawing on three manuscripts and one fragment, dating from 1341 to 1441. The UNF part of the grant is $43,000.
Publications & Presentations
“To Be Emperor: The French-German Rivalry in the Franco-Italian Epic Huon d’Auvergne.” Medieval Perspectives 33 (2018), 19-29.
"La Résistance d'Ynide dans l'épopée franco-italienne Huon d'Auvergne : femme exceptionnelle / femme admirable?" 'Par deviers Rome m’en renvenrai errant': Atti del XXème Congrès International de la Société Rencesvals pour l’étude des épopées romanes. Eds. Maria Careri, Caterina Menichetti et Maria Teresa Rachetta. Rome: Viella, 2017. 637-646.
"La longue vie de Valentin et Orson." Pour un nouveau répertoire des 'mises en prose' roman, chanson de geste, autres genres. Eds. Maria Colombo Timelli, Barbara Ferrari et Anne Schoysman. Paris : Classiques Garnier, 2014. 297-306.
"Translation in the Late Fifteenth Century: Octovien de Saint-Gelais’s L’ystoire de Eurialus et Lucresse.” Medieval Perspectives 26 (2011 ), 77-88.
"The Letters of Lucretia and Euryalus in Text and Image: An Illuminated Manuscript of Aeneas Silvius Piccolomini's Story of Two Lovers." Medieval Perspectives 22 (2007 ), 126-144.
"The Romance Epic Hero, the Mercenary, and the Ottoman Turk Seen through the Lens of Valentin et Orson (1489)." Medievalia et Humanistica 34 (2008), 105-127.
"A Husband to Her Liking: The Wily Saracen Queen Rozemonde in the 1489 Valentin et Orson." Olifant 26.1 (2007), 45-66.
"Terror and Laughter in the Images of the Wild Man: The Case of the 1489 Valentin et Orson." Fifteenth Century Studies 27 (2002), 238-256.
"King Arthur in Hollywood: The Subversion of Tragedy in First Knight. Medieval Perspectives 14 (1999), 202-213.
"Would a Courtly Gentleman Belt a Lady? Chastity Belts (and Knots) in Marie de France's Guigemar. Mediaevalia 22.2 (1999), 323-342.
"The Crucified Heart of René d'Anjou in Text and Image." Fifteenth Century Studies 25 (2000), 228-252.
"Sweet Dreams: The Pursuit of Youthful Love in Jean Froissart's Joli Buisson de Jonece and René d'Anjou's Livre du Cuer d'Amours Espris. Le Moyen Français 38 (1996), 45-60.
Valentin et Orson: An Edition and Translation of the Fifteenth-Century Romance Epic. Tempe, AR: ACMRS (Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies), 2011. 543 pp.
Adam de la Halle: Le Jeu de Robin et Marion. New York: Garland Publishing Inc., 1994. 153 pp.