Chris Tinker

BA MPhil PhD (Birmingham), Dr, Professor of French

  • EH14 4AS

    United Kingdom

1998 …2024

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Roles & Responsibilities

Teaching across a full range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Cultural Studies, French Language, and Translation and Interpreting Studies.

Supervision of PhD projects across a range of areas in Cultural Studies (media, cinema and music) and Translation and Interpreting Studies, and would be particularly interested in PhD proposals in French/Francophone and other national and transnational contexts.

Current Acting Head of the Intercultural Research Centre and Popular Culture and Inclusion theme lead. Other responsibilities at Heriot-Watt University (2000-) have included Head of Department of Languages & Intercultural Studies, Convenor of the Studies in European and International Cultures and Societies (SEICS) Research Group, School Director of Undergraduate Programmes, and Departmental Director of Undergraduate Teaching Programmes. 


Research interests

Media and popular music in France and Britain (1960s-), including representations, discourses and narratives of generation and ageing, gender and sexuality, celebrity, nostalgia, and charitable and community causes. Current work focuses on

(1) media coverage of nostalgia and popular music in contemporary France (forthcoming book with Liverpool University Press; 2019 Inaugural Lecture);

(2) consensus and division in media representations of posthumous celebrities in France (the singer-songwriter Serge Gainsbourg; the popular music star Johnny Hallyday; and the actor and humanitarian Coluche); and

(3) media representations of popular music artists and same-sex desire. 

Other projects include a BA/Leverhulme-funded study on the ways in which television, popular music and charity have combined in France over the last thirty years to produce the hugely successful annual benefit concerts Les Enfoirés in aid of the Restos du Coeur charity, drawing on archive research carried out at the French broadcasting archives (Inathèque, Paris).

Co-edited special journal issues on Contemporary French Civilization  on The broken mirror: Christine and the Queens, identities, queerness, Frenchness (with Martin Munro & Denis Provencher) (2023) and on Video Games (with Hugh Dauncey & Jonathan Ervine) (2019);  Modern and Contemporary France on Media, Memory & Nostalgia  (with Hugh Dauncey) (2015); and Volume! La revue des musiques populaires- The journal of popular music studies on Popular Music & Nostalgia (with Hugh Dauncey) (2014).

Co-organisation of French Media Research Group conferences (FMRG 22, 23 & 24) on Video Games (with Hugh Dauncey and Jonathan Ervine) and on Media, Memory & Nostalgia (with Hugh Dauncey).

Currently President of the Association for the Study of Modern & Contemporary France

Currently a member of the Contemporary French Civilization Editorial Board, and have served as a member of the French Studies Bulletin Editorial Committee (2014-17) and the Modern and Contemporary France Editorial Board (2011-16).  

Selected Publications 


TINKER, C. ‘(Re-)defining the Popular Music Gay Icon’. In Siham Bouamer, Denis M. Provencher and Ryan Schroth (eds.), Queer Realms of Memory, Liverpool University Press.


(2010) Mixed Messages: Youth Magazine Discourse and Sociocultural Shifts in Salut les copains (1962-76), Peter Lang, 193 pp.

(2005) Georges Brassens and Jacques Brel: Personal and Social Narratives in Postwar Chanson, Liverpool University Press, 240 pp.

Recent Journal Articles

(2023) TINKER, C. 'Defining queer in UK and French press coverage of Christine and the Queens', Contemporary French Civilization, 48:4, 389-401.

(2023) MUNRO, M, TINKER, C, and PROVENCHER, D.M. 'Introduction to the broken mirror: Christine and the Queens, identities, queerness, Frenchness’, Contemporary French Civilization, 48:4, 307-311.

(2022) TINKER, C. ‘Posthumous celebrity, persona and memorialisation: French newspaper coverage of the popular music artist Johnny Hallyday’, Celebrity Studies, 13:4, 557-572.

(2021) TINKER, C. Coming Out and Beyond: French Press Coverage of Popular Music Artists Emmanuel Moire and Eddy de Pretto, Contemporary French Civilization, 46:1, 75-102.

(2019) DAUNCEY, H, ERVINE, J, and TINKER C. ‘The Valency of the 10e Art: the Place of Videogames in French and Francophone Studies’, Contemporary French Civilization, 44:1, 1-19.

(2019) TINKER, C. ‘Coluche and Posthumous Celebrity: Competing and Consensual Media Discourses’, Modern and Contemporary France, 27:3, 323-341.


Recent Chapters in Edited Books

(2024) TINKER, C. ‘Contention and Consensus: Posthumous Press Coverage of Serge Gainsbourg in the UK’. In Bourderionnet, O and Julien, O. ‘Serge G.: An international Perspective on Serge Gainsbourg’, Bloomsbury, pp.43-51.

(2019) TINKER C. ‘Popular Music Nostalgia in Contemporary French Media Discourse’, in Demossier, M, Lees, D, Mondon, A and Parish, N, Routledge Handbook of French Politics and Culture, 225-235.

(2018) TINKER C. ‘“Young and Headstrong”: Nostalgia, Ageing and Later Life in French Press Coverage of Age tendre et têtes de bois’, in Lheureux, G & Cassel-Piccot, M, The Seventh Age of Man: Issues, Challenges, and Paradoxes, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 103-114.


I joined Heriot Watt in 2000 following undergraduate, MPhil and doctoral studies in French at the University of Birmingham and university teaching posts in Lyon and Birmingham.


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